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Keep track of the original plan and manage changes

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Unformatted text preview: each chapter, so make sure to include all the important points that you need to make, even for browsers who don’t read every word. One of the best tactics in preparing a business plan is to write your chapter summaries well enough to use them by themselves as the core of a Summary Memo document. In seeking investment, for example, you will need to have a Summary Memo that describes the complete plan in just a few pages. You should be able to pick out your summary paragraphs and use them to create the Summary Memo. The Executive Summary is the most important of your chapter summaries. It is the doorway to the rest of the plan. Get it right or your target readers will go no further. The best length is a single page. Emphasize the main points of your plan and keep it brief. Long-term Plan While you’re involved with summaries, consider adding a discussion of long-term plans. How do you expect your company to change over the next five, 10, or 20 years? What are the important drivers of change? What is your company doing to position itself to manage and even thrive on future growth? I don’t recommend including financial details beyond three years in a business plan. At the most, a brief summary of a five-year plan in text is sufficient. However, this is not because I don’t believe in long-term planning. Far from it. Businesses should indeed plan for longer than three years, but the long-term plans running five years, 10 years, or more are much less dependent on specific information, and specific business numbers. CHAPTER 20: PLANNING FOR IMPLEMENTATION Some plans are more likely to be implemented than others. Successful implementation starts with a good plan, one that is full of specific information on milestones, managers, responsibilities, dates and budgets. Beyond the plan itself, however, there are other factors also critical to implementation. Are you going to track results, comparing the planned results to the actual results? Are you going to follow up with your management team, making revis...
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