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4. Business Plans

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A business plan is a document used to start a new business or get funding for a business that is changing in some significant way. Business plans are important documents for business partners who need to agree upon their plans, government officials who need to approve that plan, and of course potential investors such as banks or private individuals who may fund the business. A business plan is very much like a proposal, except for at least one big difference. The business plan seeks to start a new business or significantly expand an existing business. A proposal, on the other hand, seeks approval to do a specific project. For example, a business plan might seek funding to start a software company to create computer games. A proposal, on the other hand, might bid to do the development work for some specific computer game. Caution: In a technical writing course, treat a business-plan project as a writing project, not as a real-world business plan. This chapter should not be viewed as a definitive guide for writing a real-world business plan.

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