Putting it All Together
So now you've written the plan, put together your financials, mulled it over and over in your head until you just can't mull anymore! You next job is to get the plan put into a visually appealing and easy to read format. It sounds like a no-brainer, but you'd be surprised how many plans don't get selected just because they aren't laid out very well and don't make the information easy to find. (Or, how many get tubed because there isn't a phone number on the front to call the business!)
Rule number one: Make it visually attractive and easy to read!
Rule number two: Don't make your readers have to work to find something or understand what you're saying.
OK. I know there should now be rules number three through whatever, but from here on we just have some simple guidelines for you. First off is your Cover Sheet. Make sure you include at a minimum the company name and the title of the document (yes, actually call it a "business plan"), include the addresses and telephone numbers of the business or the principals, and include the name of the person who wrote the plan (in other words, you!). Include a Table of Contents that is detailed enough to allow the reader to find specific information easily, but not so long that it becomes confusing. Sure, that's easy for us to say! Just include your headers, sub-headers and appendix information.