The Basics of Writing a Business Plan

Course description:
This introductory course will provide the student with an overview needed to write a business plan. It is designed specifically for those who have not written a business plan before or to provide a refresher for those who have. Participants will learn the importance of a plan, the fundamental topics that must be addressed in any business plan, and a plan's organizational structure. Writing styles, formats, etc., will also be covered, and other tools or sources of assistance will be identified. The last portion of the class will be dedicated to questions and answers and general discussion.

Learning objectives:

  • Understand the key components of a simple business plan
  • Review guidelines for style and appearance of a business plan
  • Identify other resources to help write the plan

Length: Three hours, 6 - 9 pm all dates.

Course materials: Copies of the overheads, a sample business plan and student handouts will be provided.

Topics covered:

  • The importance of a business plan
  • The key elements of a business plan
    • Business description
    • Management and organizational plan
    • Marketing plan
    • Financial plan
    • Supporting documents
    • Executive summary
  • Writing styles
  • Tools and assistance

Instructional format: Lecture and discussion. Practical exercises allow the students to start their planning processes.

Upcoming dates:

  • November 22, 2016
  • January 19, 2017
  • February 23, 2017
  • April 27, 2017
  • May 25, 2017
  • June 15, 2017
  • August 17, 2017
  • September 28, 2017
  • November 2017 - to be scheduled

Cost: $35. Sign up for this class and Starting A Small Business: The First Steps, and your cost is $60. Payment is due at the first program to receive the discount. Registration preferred but not required.

Register by calling the Cole County Extension Center or email