A student writing down notes

What Is The Objective of My Summary?

When creating a solid business plan, the executive summary is far more critical than you may think. Just like in all relationships, a proper introduction is important.

First impressions are everything

The executive summary objective is to give the possible future investor a brief glimpse into your main business plan. This is a window into what your reader can expect from your intentions, and an intro into why your idea is so attractive.

A busy investor will briefly glance at your executive summary to decide if it is even worth their time to continue on to read your entire plan. So, this overview summary must be clear and concise, and it must immediately catch their interest.

How Do I Write an Executive Summary For My Business Plan?

According to Nerd Wallet, there are 6 basic steps to writing a winning executive summary. These steps are summed up below:

  1. The Hook: Attention! That’s the point of the hook – grabbing your reader’s attention in just a sentence or two.
  2. Company Description: The “who, what, where, when and how” of your future business plan. 
  3. Your Market Analysis: What is your market, your competition, and what is the need for your business.
  4. Highlight your Product or Service: Bragging rights to highlight your awesome product or service. Show sales, potential, and more.
  5. Intro to Financial Details: Discuss your sales, profit, projections, past loans and funding.
  6. Your Plans for the Future: A summary of main points and what you see in your future. Explain what you will do with the funding.

How Long Should My Business Summary Be?

In general, less is more, and short is sweet. 

Investors say that an effective executive summary should be approximately 2-3 pages. Think of it as a business plan “cover page”. 

There are many startup executive summary examples of well crafted summaries that you can find online and peruse, as well as numerous templates that are easy to follow. However, don’t fall into the trap of losing your own voice.

How Can I Test Drive My Summary and Plan?

A founder in their house

At Startup Wars, students engage in interactive simulations to find their footing in this critical stage of business development.

Professors at universities like Temple University, Drexel, Hofstra, Florida State, and Ohio State are utilizing Startup Wars as a real-life tool to redefine business education. 

Their goal is to empower students with simulated learning. 

The Startup Wars immersive programs generate digital reports for future business creators that help them track their progress, and “gain an understanding of core financial principles, such as profit, revenue, income, and more.”

In Summary, Your Planning and Purpose

Always remember your target audience.  Be careful not to water down your summary  with too many unnecessary details. Try to utilize a similar written spirit and style throughout. 

Be careful not to be too repetitive in your executive summary, and do not include any information in your summary that isn’t in your actual plan. 

With some insightful education – like the training experiences through Startup Wars, and careful strategic planning and research, you can consolidate your principal points in one clearly drafted executive summary. 

This polished summary will open doors to investors and help you to see the dreams of your future business come true.

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Charlotte Kane
Charlotte Kane Undergraduate Student, The Ohio State University

Startup Wars allowed me to understand everything that goes into starting a business in 90 days.

Darshita Bajoria
Darshita Bajoria Undergraduate Student, The Ohio State University

Startup Wars is an interactive way to learn and hone entrepreneurial skills while being a no-risk outlet. Great tool for those pursuing entrepreneurship.