What Are the Components of a Business Plan?

When you're writing a business plan, you don't want to leave anything out. it's important to include all the details, so that potential investors or loan officers are sure that you've "done your homework." A good business plan has an executive summary, a mission statement, a company description, a description of products, services, marketing, operations, management, and financial statements. Your business plan should be reviewed and updated annually to ensure that you're keeping in line with your goals.

Executive Summary

Generally, this is to be written last. It summarizes everything in the business plan and is often the first thing a prospective investor or loan officer will look at. Make it impressive, optimistic and realistic.

Mission Statement & Company Description

A mission statement sums up the company's objectives in 1-3 sentences. A company description is a lengthier document that outlines the history and future of the company, usually no more than two pages.

Description of Products & Services

Describe the products you sell, or your services. List your suppliers and your criteria for selecting the inventory you keep. if you're a service business, describe the services you offer.


Detail your marketing plan. You must know your target market, your competition and how your business will stand out.

Operations & Management

Describe in detail how the business will be operated. Include a tree-chart of responsibilities, and include the resume or history of key players.

Financial Statements

In your business plan, include your personal financial statement. Investors and loan officers will want to see that you find the project worthy enough to put your "money where your mouth is" and that you're a person of means, who stands something to lose if the business should fail.


About the Author

Lisa Russell has been a writer since 1998. She's been published in Rethinking Everything Magazine, Playdate, AERO and Home Educator's Family Times. She has a Bachelor of Science in business marketing management and a professional background in marketing, education, cosmetology and hospitality.