from INC magazine 9/10 enhansed by Peter/CXO Wiz4biz
When you’re trying to sell an idea to a potential investor, you’ll need to craft the pitch-perfect Executive Summary. Here’s how to write a summary that will get your Executive Summary & Business Plan read, and your foot in the door.
What is it? Whether you’ve put together a Business Plan or an Investment Proposal, you’re going to need an Executive Summary to preface your report. The summary should include the major details of your Biz Plan, but it’s important not to bore the reader with details at this stage. Save the analysis, charts, numbers & glowing reviews for the Plan itself. This is the time to grab your reader’s attention and let them know what it is you do and why they should read the rest of your Biz Plan or Proposal.
Best Foot Forward. The Executive Summary is also an important way for you, as the entrepreneur, to determine which aspects of your company have the clearest selling points, and which aspects may require a bit more explanation. The process of distilling the essence of your business down to a page or two, forces you to think hard, decide what’s important, & discard things that aren’t essential to the story line. By doing this, you develop a better Vision of what your business is all about, and you become better at telling your story.
Why Write It? Investors, lenders, executives, managers & CEOs are busy people – always. That means that the Executive Summary is an essential leadin for your Business Plan to get read. Think about it this way: if you had an endless list of things to do, and someone handed you an 80-page document and said “read this! you’d probably first want to know why. The most important reason to include an Executive Summary is that in many cases, it is the only thing the reader will read. Investors will read the Executive Summary first, to decide if they will even bother reading the rest of the Business Plan. It’s rare for an investor or lender to read an entire Business Plan, at least in the initial stages of analysis & consideration for funding, so having a strong executive summary is key.
Get your Foot in the Door is the initial Goal when you’re writing your Business Plan, in order to get face-time with the investor. Assuming that your business is a good fit for the investor, a strong Executive Summary will get you invited in for a meeting. A poor executive summary will leave you standing in the cold.
[ The First Paragraph, The Nuts & Bolts, Determining the Tone, The Content, The Length, What to Avoid (being a Noid er Nerd) and more in Premium Content ]