An executive summary of any business plan provides a detailed overview of what is contained in the plan. Its purpose is to summarize the key points of a document for its readers and have them saved in an accessible format. An executive summary is more of an advanced organizer for the reader. It must be clear and concise and also entice the reader to get engaged with the rest of the business plan.
This proves the point that an executive summary is the most important part of any business plan. If it doesn’t capture the reader’s attention, the plan will be set aside and become unread. It can be a disaster if you write a business plan to get funding but it happens no one is ready to read your plan. Note the getting money from investors should not only be the motivating factor behind writing a business plan. A business plan should also act as a guide to see you through the life of your business.
What to write in the executive summary
The information that goes into the executive summary varies depending on the type of business you want to establish. For startups, one of the main goals of a business plan is to convince financing institutions to invest in your business by providing the much-required business capital, which normally comes in the form of debt or equity financing. To do so, you will need to provide a solid case for your business, and this is what makes executive summary a very important part of your business plan.
A typical executive plan will have many parts including;
- A description of the business opportunities
- Explanation of how your business will serve the market
- A description of your customer base and target market.
- Description of your business model, including the products and services you intend to sell.
- A brief outline of your marketing and sales strategy
- A brief description of the market and competition and your strategy for getting market share. This includes your competitive edge and the difference you intend to make upon your entry to the market.
For Established Businesses
For established businesses, the executive summary will typically include information about the achievements and growth plans. A typical executive summary will include information such as;
- The mission statement articulates the purpose of your business. In a few sentences, you should describe what your company does and the core values and philosophies for your business.
- Company information gives a brief history of your company by describing the products and services and when as well as where they are formed, the owners of the company, and other statistics such as the number of employees and business locations.
- Business highlights are a description of the evolution of your business, how the business has grown, year over year revenues, profitability increase in market share, and stats about your customers.
- Financial summary whose purpose is to update the business plan and seek additional financing for expansion and give a brief financial summary.
- Future goals of the business. This is particularly important if you are seeking financing. It will explain how additional funding will be used to expand your business and otherwise increase profits.