Business Plan II: Templates, Examples and More

In our last post, we talked about the importance of preparing a true business plan before embarking on entrepreneurship. Careful planning is a key to success, and a business plan is a big part of that.

But once the ideas for a plan are in order, wondering how to get started? We've compiled a list of free resources that will help organize your ideas and save you valuable time. Check it out!

Templates and Outlines

A great place to learn about the structure of a business plan and obtain helpful materials is through the SCORE website, which provides a wealth of information. More specifically, they have the Business Planning & Financial Statements Template Gallery, where you can find plenty of resources like a Financial Projections template and SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) Analysis worksheet – critical elements to your business plan. Through the SCORE website, you can also sign-up for a Business Planning workshop taught by successful business experts.

Business Plan Examples

An Arlington Public Library* card is a free resource that just keeps on giving. Access the Gale Virtual Reference Library (GVRL) to read and print sections from the latest edition of Business Plans Handbook: A Compilation of Actual Business Plans Developed by Small Businesses throughout North America. The handbook provides excellent examples of different business plans. Reviewing a few of these plans will give you some ideas on language and a better sense of how to structure your own business plan.

Books on Writing your Business Plan

Through the library you can also access many business planning books such as:

  • Book coverBusiness Model Generation: A Handbook for Visionaries, Game Changers by Alexander Osterwalder and Yves Pigneur, is a great book that walks you through the business planning process in a clear and illustrative manner.
  • Business Plans: Secrets and Strategies by Rhonda Abrams provides a well-organized and comprehensive explanation of the business plan and its components. It also includes an outline of a business plan and tips on presenting your plan to investors.

In-person Advising

Last but not least, if you need someone to walk you through the business plan writing process, motivate you and hold you accountable, consider speaking with someone who can monitor your progress and review your work – like a BizLaunch counselor or SCORE Mentor.

*In case you missed it, check out Do You Really Need a Business Plan? to learn about additional library resources that can assist you with developing your Business Plan.

Topic: BizLaunch
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