You can skip the executive summary (or greatly reduce it in scope) if you are writing an internal business plan that`s purely a strategic guide for your company. In that case, you can dispense with details about the management team, funding requirements, and traction, and instead treat the executive summary as an overview of the strategic direction of the company, to ensure that all team members are on the same page.
Because your executive summary is such a critical component of your business plan, you`ll want to make sure that it`s as clear and concise as possible. Cover the key highlights of your business, but don`t into too much detail. Ideally, your executive summary will be one to two pages at most, designed to be a quick read that sparks interest and makes your investors feel eager to hear more.
And you don`t have to start with the full, detailed business plan that I`m going to describe here. In fact, it can be much easier to start with a simple, one-page business plan—what we call a Lean Plan—and then come back and build a slightly longer, more detailed business plan later.
Later, as the investment process proceeds (if it does), the latest regularly-revised plan will serve as a companion piece to the pitch and a key document for due diligence.
Whether you are in the beginning stages of starting your own business or planning on taking it to the next level, you will need a clear and informative business plan. `What is a business plan?` you may ask. In short, it is a comprehensive guide wherein answers to the questions and problems you will face in each stage of growth are laid out in detail.
The executive summary of your business plan introduces your company, explains what you do, and lays out what you`re looking for from your readers. Structurally, it is the first chapter of your business plan. And while it`s the first thing that people will read, I generally advise that you write it last.