Welcome to the final part of how to write your first business summary.
After the introduction (Part 1), we covered Market Opportunity/Problem, Our Solution and Business Model in Part 2; Markets & Channels, Competition, and Our Advantages in Part 3; and Risks, Key Metrics & Financial Projections, and Team Bio’s in Part 4. In wrapping up we’ll discuss Accomplishments to Date, Next Steps and the Intro and Closing sections. Read through to the end for an offer from me to you.
If you have been following along and have been working on the nine sections previously discussed, then you should find the last few sections easy by comparison. 😀
First up of the last four sections is Accomplishments to Date. This should be easy for you to compile – you do know what you’ve done so far don’t you? Focus on protection of intellectual property, creation of prototypes, early customer sales and attraction of key relationships (with team members, suppliers or large customers/channels). You’re trying to convey actions that provide the business good traction.
The next section is a little trickier. For Next Steps you have to take the time to understand what you need next, what actions are going to get you there, in what order you need to do them, and what resources you need to complete them. At this early stage of developing your business you probably can’t plan out more than 60 to 120 days. The required resource question is important, especially if you don’t current have those resources. Defining what you need and being able to clearly communicate that is the first step in asking your network to help you find the resources you need.
The Introduction paragraph should be just a few sentences that summarizes the business and set sthe stage for what follows. For many businesses this may just be a paraphrase of their Mission statement. Don’t worry if you don’t have a Mission statement yet – its just a short statement of the businesses major objective, couched in terms that are appropriate for an external audience (e.g., customers, potential investors, suppliers, etc.) – as opposed to your Vision statement which is written for an internal audience (e.g., employees, shareholders, etc.).
Finally I like to have a Conclusion, otherwise the summary just seems to abruptly end. So, wrap it up for the reader, maybe add a call to action.
Well, that’s it. I hope you’ve found this series helpful. Let me know if you have any questions or feed back.
Finally, I’m making a PDF of this template (including some brief instructions) available for download at Strategic Visualization summary template, so click on over there and get your copy.