How to Write an Executive Summary
The most important facet of a business plan is the executive summary. An executive summary is a summarization of all the major details of your business plan. In other words, it is a one page summarized business plan. The executive summary should include key points from these sections of the business plan:
- Mission Statement
- Company Description
- S.W.O.T. Analysis
- Market Research & Industry Analysis
- Marketing Plan
- Management Summary
- Financial Projections
The executive summary includes the first section of content that any reader will come across. As a result, the executive summary must grab the reader’s attention. If you are seeking funding from an investor, tailor the summary to that investor. This will determine if the investor will continue to read the executive summary. Omit needless words and get straight to business. It is important to take these guidelines into consideration and execute them on paper when writing the executive summary. Consider this. If someone hands you a sixty-five page business plan it is likely that you will not read pass the first or second page for several reasons such as time constraints, unnecessary information, etc. Essentially, this is why it is crucial to understand your reader and provide a clear and concise executive summary.
Although not necessary, including a mission statement in the executive summary can be useful. A mission statement identifies the organization’s purpose. For instance, Facebook’s mission statement is “Founded in 2004, Facebook’s mission is to give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together. People use Facebook to stay connected with friends and family, to discover what’s going on in the world, and to share and express what matters to them.” Notice that Facebook’s mission statement is clear, concise, and easy to follow. Remember, you are not writing a report for your creative writing class. Do not complicate yourself and avoid jargon.
Follow the guidelines provided above to write a successful executive summary that can help business owners and others understand the fundamentals of the business.