If you’re looking to catch that October 29th deadline for submissions to The QEC 2017, it’s probably too late to create a business plan from scratch (consider this a friendly challenge and DM me if you end up writing and submitting a business plan in 3 days). However, for those of you casually strolling towards the finish line, here are some tips to help you polish up your business plans and make sure you are putting your best foot forward.
- Make sure that your business plan includes the following items. This will keep your business plan organized and help judges better understand the key aspects of your business.
- The official QEC title page
- A table of contents
- A 1-page executive summary describing your business clearly and concisely
- Numbered, well-formatted pages containing all relevant sections with subheadings
- Be realistic in financial estimations and projections. It may be impressive to gain 50% market share by the end of the year, but make sure you have the data and facts to back it up. It may be better to be conservative with your numbers than risk being challenged by the judges. If you can’t find any data or facts, state your assumptions as to how you reached your final numbers
- Know your audience. You can expect judges in the preliminary round to be industry professionals, while judges in the second and third round are senior executives or seasoned entrepreneurs. Make sure that your writing is tailored to the appropriate audience and that you clearly explain any technical terms and concepts.
- Focus on the opportunity. What about your business will compel someone to invest $50,000 into it? You need to clearly convey why investing in your business is better than investing in other startups in the pool or leaving it in the bank to collect interest.
- Execution matters a lot. Remember to talk about yourself and your founding team. Judges want to see your complementary skill sets and how you are the right group to bring this product or service to the market.
- Be attentive to detail. Make sure you triple-edit your submission for formatting, grammatical mistakes, etc.
- Have fun! This 10-page business plan is a celebration of your hard work and accomplishments thus far, so be sure to have fun!
We are very excited to receive your submissions and can’t wait to learn about your business ideas. If you have any questions about the submission process, feel free to email Kirsten, our Director of Competitors, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Otherwise, if you’ve been inspired to write a 10-page business plan in 3 days, you can reach me at email@example.com.