Tag: Write

How to write a perfect professional email in English in 5 steps – Global

#business emails

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How to write a perfect professional email in English in 5 steps

For most of us, email is the most common form of business communication so it s important to get it right. Although emails usually aren t as formal as letters, they still need to be professional to present a good image of you and your company.

How to write a formal email

Follow these five simple steps to make sure your English emails are perfectly professional.

  1. Begin with a greeting
  2. Thank the recipient
  3. State your purpose
  4. Add your closing remarks
  5. End with a closing

Download our free ebook: Everyday English Vocabulary 38 pages which points useful words and English phrases to help you have a better understanding of what’s going on around you.

Begin with a greeting

Always open your email with a greeting, such as Dear Lillian . If your relationship with the reader is formal, use their family name (eg. Dear Mrs. Price ). If the relationship is more casual, you can simply say, Hi Kelly . If you don t know the name of the person you are writing to, use: To whom it may concern or Dear Sir/Madam .

  • Thank the recipient

    If you are replying to a client s inquiry, you should begin with a line of thanks. For example, if someone has a question about your company, you can say, Thank you for contacting ABC Company . If someone has replied to one of your emails, be sure to say, Thank you for your prompt reply or Thanks for getting back to me . Thanking the reader puts him or her at ease, and it will make you appear more polite.

  • State your purpose

    If you are starting the email communication, it may be impossible to include a line of thanks. Instead, begin by stating your purpose. For example, I am writing to enquire about … or I am writing in reference to … .

    Make your purpose clear early on in the email, and then move into the main text of your email. Remember, people want to read emails quickly, so keep your sentences short and clear. You ll also need to pay careful attention to grammar, spelling and punctuation so that you present a professional image of yourself and your company.

  • Add your closing remarks

    Before you end your email, it s polite to thank your reader one more time and add some polite closing remarks. You might start with Thank you for your patience and cooperation or Thank you for your consideration and then follow up with, If you have any questions or concerns, don t hesitate to let me know and I look forward to hearing from you .

  • End with a closing

    The last step is to include an appropriate closing with your name. Best regards . Sincerely . and Thank you are all professional. Avoid closings such as Best wishes or Cheers unless you are good friends with the reader. Finally, before you hit the send button, review and spell check your email one more time to make sure it s truly perfect!

  • Aren t you an EF English Live student yet? See the general and business English course in action by requesting a one month for only one dollar* trial. Find more information about essential professional English tips here .

    Wil is a writer, teacher, learning technologist and keen language learner. He’s taught English in classrooms and online for nearly 10 years, trained teachers in using classroom and web technology, and written e-learning materials for several major websites. He speaks four languages and is currently looking for another one to start learning.

    Wil





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    How To Write a Business Plan #at #home #business #ideas

    #small business plan

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    How To Write a Business Plan

    Planning for Success

    You ve no doubt heard the expression, Failing to plan is planning to fail.

    Many entrepreneurs write a business plan only when they need to secure start-up financing. However, your plan is far more than a document for banks and investors to read; it s an invaluable roadmap for launching and growing your business.

    In order to put your business concept on paper, you need to think through and research the many factors that are needed to make sure your business is a success. With a plan, not only can you spot potential weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, your plan can help you make informed decisions about your venture before you commit yourself legally or financially.

    Here, we ve summarized the key sections that you ll find in a business plan.

    The Seven Key Sections of a Business Plan

    1. Executive summary

    Your executive summary should be 1–2 pages long, and provide an overview of your business concept, key objectives of your business and your plan, ownership structure, management team, your product or service offering, target market(s), competitive advantages, marketing strategy, and a summary of your financial projections. Your executive summary should be written last, after you ve written the rest of the plan; each paragraph should be a summary of the more detailed, related section of the plan.

    2. Business Overview

    In your overview, include details regarding your business’s history, vision and/or mission, objectives, and your ownership structure.

    3. Products and Services

    Expand upon your products and services, including features and benefits, competitive advantages, and, if marketing a product, how and where your products will be produced.

    4. Industry overview

    The industry overview is your opportunity to demonstrate the viability of your business by discussing the size and growth of your industry, the key markets within your industry, how your customers will buy your products or services, and which markets you’ll be targeting.

    5. Marketing Strategy

    Here you describe your target market segments, your competition, how you ll differentiate your products or services, and your products’ or services’ unique selling proposition (USP).

    • Discuss product or service pricing and promotion, including how your promotional programs will appeal to each of your target market segments.
    • Provide a plan of traditional and guerrilla marketing tactics, such as tradeshows, press-magnet events, social media marketing (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, etc.), networking, and print, media, or online advertising. Include the cost associated with each tactic.
    • Describe how your products or services will be sold (e.g. storefront, online, wholesalers), and your target markets’ buying cycle.

    6. Operations Plan

    Provide a profile of your management team, your human resources plan, your business location(s) and facilities, your production plan (if selling a product), and an overview of day-to-day operations.

    7. Financial plan

    Some believe this is the most important part of a plan – so much so, it’s worth dedicating up to 80% of your time to writing this section. You ll need to show three years’ worth of projected financial statements, including income statements, pro-forma balance sheets, and monthly cash flow and annual cash flow statements. Summarize each statement into a few easy-to-understand sentences and put these in a cover page for the statements. Be sure to document all of the assumptions you used in forecasting your revenues and expenses.

    Download the Small Business BC How to Write a Business Plan checklist and start planning for your business success.

    Business Plan Resources

    Here are some resources to help you with your business plan:

    Import / Export Business Registration Resources:

    Business Plan Review:

    Business Plan Guides:

    Upcoming Seminars





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    How to Write a Business Proposal #harvard #business #publishing

    #business proposal examples

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    How to Write a Business Proposal

    Hi there! It looks like you’re new here. Find out how to land more clients with this free guide: 16 Marketing Tactics to Get More Clients .

    Photo Credits: Jomphong / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

    A business proposal is perhaps one of the most critical documents you need to learn how to write. It is what spells the difference between success and failure, whether you re a freelancer or you have a company of your own.

    In today s cut-throat business world, entrepreneurs find themselves spending hours upon hours submitting business proposals to potential clients, and not get any results. On the other hand, there are those that are like snipers, able to get the contract after just submitting one business proposal.

    So how do they do it? Well, this article will teach you show you how to do just that.

    The Basics of a Business Proposal

    Before you even go and start writing that business proposal, you must first understand what it is and learn the basics.

    A business proposal is a written document that offers a particular product or service to a potential buyer or client. There are generally two kinds of business proposals: solicited business proposals (which are submitted in response to an advertisement published by the buyer or client) and unsolicited proposals (submitted or given out to potential buyers or clients even though they are not requesting for one).

    Business Proposal vs. Business Plan

    Quite often, the terms business proposal and business plan are used interchangeably, giving you the impression that they are one and the same. But they are not.

    A business proposal is created to offer a product or service to a buyer or client. On the other hand, a business plan is a formal statement of a set of business goals and how these would be achieved. The latter is only part of what is included in a business proposal.

    3 Ps of a Winning Business Proposal

    The secret behind writing a winning business proposal and one that will just be set aside is the presence of what I call the 3 Ps: problem statement. proposed solution. and pricing information .

    Problem Statement

    A successful business proposal must be one that is able to describe to the client what their needs are in a plain and simple manner. This is extremely vital because how can you expect the client to believe that you can help them solve their problems if you don t even know are these problems?

    Here s an example of a well-written problem statement of a business proposal:

    With the presence of social media in today’s advancing world, Puffin Media Inc. hesitated to make the leap from traditional marketing to social media marketing.

    Their marketing tactics seem to be losing effectiveness and the company feels as if they are missing out on a large segment of their market. In addition, their competition has began acquiring the majority of the business in the market and have brought Puffin Media’s growing revenues to a halt.

    Proposed Solution

    The main objective of submitting a business proposal is to offer a solution to a problem faced by a prospective client. This part should be as detailed as possible, and able to address each and every need you have discovered.

    Here s an example:

    The solution that is recommended for Puffin Media Inc. is to deploy their company on all of the major social media channels; however, there is a major difference in creating social media platforms versus creating a brand you can promote on those platforms.

    A marketing campaign must be created utilizing these media channels and creating immediate engagement with your audience. In order for this to be successful, you know how to make sales. Initially, acquire some fans, followers, subscribers, and connections and invite them to join you in particular discussion or attend a specific event.

    The purpose of this is not only to promote Puffin Media Inc, but also to solicit feedback from the target audience.

    Pricing Information

    For many clients, the pricing information is what will make them decide whether they would offer you the contract or not.

    How to write this part greatly depends on the solution or solutions you included in the previous segment. If the solution proposed will only entail a short period of time, a Fee Summary will suffice. For longer projects, segment these payments to specific milestones in a Fee Schedule list.

    Things to Remember When Writing a Business Proposal

    Now that you know the essentials of a winning business proposal, it s time to go ahead and start writing, right? Well, not exactly.

    The next part is to be able to find out what to put under the 3 Ps so that you can develop a business proposal that gets their attention and awards you that contract.

    Do Your Research

    Not all clients and buyers will give you the explicit details of their wants and needs, especially if you re submitting an unsolicited business proposal. Extend your research to include the competitors of your potential client, and their customers as well. This will ensure that your business proposal will be as comprehensive and as detailed as possible.

    Put Yourself in their Shoes

    Another thing to remember when writing a business proposal is to always put yourself in the shoes of your potential clients. Doing this will help you provide information on things that they would most likely ask, such as Why should we pay you this much amount for the solutions you re offering and How can these changes benefit me?

    Why You?

    If you determined that a company or client has certain needs, chances are others would have done the same. That means that there will be others that have submitted their respective proposals to the company or client.

    That being said, it is important to make sure to highlight your talents, experience and other qualifications to convince the client why they should choose you or your company.

    Writing that Business Proposal

    When you got all of these, then you re finally able to start writing your business proposal. One of the best ways on how to write a persuasive business proposal is to use a business proposal software.

    Business proposal software programs helps you write your business proposal without having to worry about how they should be put together and the content that you need to include. These programs contain two kinds of proposal templates that you can use and re-use, depending on which one you need to write.

    In addition to the stored templates, you can create your own proposal templates through these programs based on previous proposals you ve created, making it even more convenient for you and your business.

    A Final Word…

    Although business proposals present the same information and have the same layout, it s important to take time and make each one unique. Each project is different, even if it s with the same company. Remember, a business proposal must show how you or your company can help a potential client.

    About Ruben

    Free Guide: 16 Simple Marketing Tactics
    to Get More Clients





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    How to Write a One Page Business Plan #free #business #websites

    #simple business plan

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    How to Write a One-Page Business Plan

    If you ve been putting off writing your business plan, you re not alone. Writing a business plan can seem like a daunting task, and it s an easy one to avoid.

    But it doesn t have to be. An easy way to start your business plan is with just one page.

    There s really not a lot of differences between a one-page business plan and a good executive summary. The only real possible difference is the that the one-page plan must absolutely fit on one page in a font that most people can still read, while a traditional executive summary can extend to two or three pages.

    Investors don t have lots of time to read and one page can get the idea of your business across quickly and succinctly. It s actually a very good exercise to trim down your business plan to the absolute minimum —it forces you to trim needless words and communicate your business idea clearly, with minimal clutter.

    Here at Bplans, we ve developed a formula for the one-page business plan that we call the pitch . The pitch format gets all of the critical information that you need to define the strategy for your business. Some people like to call this your business model, but it s really the same thing.

    Whether you want to call it a one-page business plan, an executive summary, or a pitch, it should contain the following:

    1. A description of the problem your customers have
    2. Your solution (your product or service)
    3. Business model (how you make money)
    4. Target market (who is your customer and how many of them are there)
    5. Competitive advantage
    6. Management team
    7. Financial summary
    8. Funding required

    If you feel like you have writer s block, or you don t know where to start, I have a couple of suggestions.

    Second, you can download our free one-page business plan template and use that as a starting point.

    Third, you can try out LivePlan s pitch feature. Just answer the questions it asks and click Publish , and you ll have a professionally-designed, one-page business plan that is easy to share and covers everything an investor wants to know. Another good option is to follow my colleague Caroline Cummings advice and write your business plan like it s a series of tweets (seriously, it works).

    The content of your plan (or pitch) is by far the most important thing don t stress about the design. Think carefully about what you are trying to communicate. Too many companies spend time focusing on presentation and graphical display of their plans when what they are saying and how they are saying it is really the most critical aspect of it all.

    Don t get me wrong—you don t want to have an ugly presentation. But focus on the content, because it s more important than anything else.

    Remember: The executive summary (or pitch, or one-page business plan) is usually your introductory communication with investors, so it will be your first impression. Investors will use this document to get an understanding of your communication skills as well as your ability to think critically about your business. You should spend more time on this part of your plan than on any other section.

    Your one-page business plan will be an extremely useful tool to help you refine your business strategy quickly and easily. It might even be all the business plan that you need.

    But, if you do need to expand your one-page business plan into a more full-fledged plan that includes more details on your company and your target market, you can follow our step-by-step guide for writing a detailed business plan. download our free business plan template. or review any of our over 500 complete sample business plans. It s all free and if you have questions, please post them in the comments.

    How LivePlan makes your business more successful

    If you re writing a business plan you’re in luck. Online business planning software makes it easier than ever before to put together a business plan for your business.

    As you ll see in a moment LivePlan is more than just business plan software though. It s a knowledgable guide combined with a professional designer coupled with a financial wizard. It ll help you get over the three most common business hurdles with ease.

    Let s take a look at those common hurdles and see how producing a top notch business plan sets your business up for success.





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    How to Write a Business Report for English Learners #home #business #ideas

    #business report

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    How to Write a Business Report for English Learners

    By Kenneth Beare. English as 2nd Language Expert

    Kenneth is an ESL teacher, trainer, and content developer. He provides consulting services for English language learning projects through Englishfeed. You can follow Kenneth on Twitter. on his Google profile: Kenneth Beare. or on Facebook to stay up to date on his latest English learning materials.

    Updated July 28, 2015.

    If you would like to learn how to write a business report in English follow these tips and use the example report as a template on which to base your own business report. First of all, business reports provide important information for management that is timely and factual. English learners writing business reports need to make sure that the language is precise and concise. The writing style used for business reports should present information without strong opinions, but rather as direct and accurately as possible.

    Continue Reading Below

    Linking language should be used to connect ideas and sections of the business report. This example business report presents the four essentials that every business report should include:

    Terms of reference refer to the terms on which the business report is written.

    The procedure describe the method that was used to collect data for the report.

    The findings describe the data or other important information the report produced.

    Conclusions are drawn on the findings which provide reasons for recommendations.

    The recommendations are specific suggestions made based on the conclusions of the report.

    Read the short example business report and follow the tips below. Teachers can print this examples for use in class in lessons using sound teaching writing strategies .

    Reports: Example Report

    Margaret Anderson, Director of Personnel has requested this report on employee benefits satisfaction. The report was to be submitted to her by 28 June.

    A representative selection of 15% of all employees were interviewed in the period between April 1st and April 15th concerning:

    Continue Reading Below

    1. Overall satisfaction with our current benefits package
    2. Problems encountered when dealing with the personnel department
    3. Suggestions for the improvement of communication policies
    4. Problems encountered when dealing with our HMO
    1. Employees were generally satisfied with the current benefits package.
    2. Some problems were encountered when requesting vacation due to what is perceived as long approval waiting periods.
    3. Older employees repeatedly had problems with HMO prescription drugs procedures.
    4. Employees between the ages of 22 and 30 report few problems with HMO.
    5. Most employees complain about the lack of dental insurance in our benefits package.
    6. The most common suggestion for improvement was for the ability to process benefits requests online.
    1. Older employees, those over 50, are having serious problems with our HMO s ability to provide prescription drugs.
    2. Our benefits request system needs to be revised as most complaints concerning in-house processing.
    3. Improvements need to take place in personnel department response time.
    4. Information technology improvements should be considered as employees become more technologically savvy.
    1. Meet with HMO representatives to discuss the serious nature of complaints concerning prescription drug benefits for older employees.
    2. Give priority to vacation request response time as employees need faster approval in order to be able to plan their vacations.
    3. Take no special actions for the benefits package of younger employees.
    4. Discuss the possibility of adding an online benefits requests system to our company Intranet.

    Important Points to Remember

    • A report is divided into four areas:
      • Terms of Reference – This section gives background information on the reason for the report. It usually includes the person requesting the report.
      • Procedure – The procedure provides the exact steps taken and methods used for the report.
      • Findings – The findings point out discoveries made during the course of the report investigation.
      • Conclusions – The conclusions provide logical conclusions based on the findings.
      • Recommendations – The recommendations state actions that the writer of the report feels need to be taken based on the findings and conclusions.
    • Reports should be concise and factual. Opinions are given in the conclusions section. However, these opinions should be based on facts presented in the findings .
    • Use simple tenses (usually the present simple) to express facts.
    • Use the imperative form (Discuss the possibility. Give priority. etc.) in the recommendations section as these apply to the company as a whole.

    Continue learning about other types of business documents using these resources:





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    How to Write a Business Contract #local #business

    #business contract

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    How to Write a Business Contract

    Entering into a contractual business relationship with another party is a serious task and should only be entered into after giving real thought about the relationship you want. Don’t fall into the trap of entering into agreements haphazardly or with complete trust of the other party. Even if it’s a family member (some would argue especially if it’s a family member), the business contract should protect your own business interests first and to do so you’ll need to familiarize yourself with some guidelines on how to write a business contract.

    Generally, you will want to keep two things in mind when entering or writing a business contract:

    • Does the agreement address all of the possible situations which may arise. It’s also good to have contingency plans.
    • Do the provisions leave too much room for ambiguity? Contract disputes often arise over unclear terms or provisions.

    Read below for tips on writing business contracts for your small business.

    1. Get it in Writing

    Anytime you enter into a business contract, you want written proof of the agreement as well as specific terms by which each party is bound. Oral agreements do occur in the small business context, but such agreements are difficult to enforce and people’s memories can be faulty and terms easily misremembered or misinterpreted. The first lesson in How to Write a Business Contract 101 is to always get it in writing .

    2. Use Language You Can Understand

    There’s no need to be intimidated by a false sense that a business contract has to be written in legalese. The best contracts, particularly in the small business context, are written in plain English where both parties know exactly what they’re signing and what the provisions mean. Just be sure that the terms you write are specific as to each party’s obligations and the specific remedies that you have in the event that the other party violates the agreement. Also, keep in mind that certain terms have specific meaning in the law .

    The easiest way to write a contract is to number and label each paragraph and only include that topic in the paragraph. By segmenting the contract into individual units, it will be more easily understood by the parties (and by a court should it come to that).

    The rights and obligations of each party should be laid out in specific language that leaves little room for interpretation. If you want delivery on the 15th of each month, use the specific number instead of writing, mid-month . If you and the other party agree to a new term or decide to change an existing term in the agreement, be sure to add a written amendment to the contract rather than relying on an oral agreement. A court may or may not accept the oral agreement as part of the contract.

    4. Include Payment Details

    It’s important to specify how payments are to be made. If you want to pay half up front and the other half in equal installments during the life of the contract, state that, as well as the terms under which you will release payment. For example if you contract with someone to paint your business offices, you might want a provision stating that your regular payments are contingent upon a certain number of rooms being painted to your satisfaction. Whenever possible, list dates, requirements and methods of payment (cash, check, credit). Contract disputes often center on money, so you’ll want to be as specific as possible.

    5. Consider Confidentiality

    Often when entering a business contract, the other party will gain access and insight into your business practices and possible trade secrets. If you do not want the other party sharing this information, you should include a clause that binds the other party from disclosing your business information or information included in the contract to other parties.

    6. Include Language on How to Terminate the Contract

    Contracts aren’t meant to last forever. If one party continually misses payments or fails to perform their duties, you want to have a mechanism in place so that you can (relatively) easily terminate the contract. It could be a mutual termination agreement (when the objectives of each side have been met through the contract) or more likely an agreement that either side can terminate if the other side violates a major term of the contract, after giving proper notice of its intent to terminate.

    7. Consider State Laws Governing the Contract

    Contracts can stipulate which state’s laws will govern in the event there’s a dispute. If the other party is located in another state, you should include a clause that states which state laws will govern. If you don’t, and there’s a dispute, there may be a whole other legal argument (which costs more money) about which state’s laws should be applied to the contract. Avoid this headache and agree to it at the inception of the contract, when both parties are agreeable.

    8. Include Remedies and Attorneys’ Fees

    Especially if you believe that it’s more likely that you’ll sue over the contract (as opposed to the other party suing you), you might want to include a clause that awards attorneys’ fees to the winning party. Without this clause, each party will have to pay for their own attorneys.

    9. Consider a Mediation and Arbitration Clause

    In the event of a dispute, it may be advantageous to include a provision that requires the parties enter either mediation or arbitration. or both. Mediation is a voluntary process where both parties try to work out their issues directly, with the help of a neutral third party mediator. Any settlement must be approved by both parties. Arbitration is a more adversarial process where the arbitrator hears both sides’ arguments and makes a decision that both parties must abide by. It’s akin to a trial setting, but the arbitration process is much quicker and cheaper than litigating in court.

    10. Consider the Help of a Legal Professional

    Writing a business contract that protects your interests while balancing your business objectives is critical to your business’ success. Learning how to write a business contract is the first step on the road to success. But while you should get acquainted with the legal terms and processes for writing a contract, sometimes it’s best to have an attorney review your contract before it takes on the force of law. Find a business and commercial law attorney near you for assistance.





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    How To Write a Business Plan #business #idea

    #small business plan

    #

    How To Write a Business Plan

    Planning for Success

    You ve no doubt heard the expression, Failing to plan is planning to fail.

    Many entrepreneurs write a business plan only when they need to secure start-up financing. However, your plan is far more than a document for banks and investors to read; it s an invaluable roadmap for launching and growing your business.

    In order to put your business concept on paper, you need to think through and research the many factors that are needed to make sure your business is a success. With a plan, not only can you spot potential weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, your plan can help you make informed decisions about your venture before you commit yourself legally or financially.

    Here, we ve summarized the key sections that you ll find in a business plan.

    The Seven Key Sections of a Business Plan

    1. Executive summary

    Your executive summary should be 1–2 pages long, and provide an overview of your business concept, key objectives of your business and your plan, ownership structure, management team, your product or service offering, target market(s), competitive advantages, marketing strategy, and a summary of your financial projections. Your executive summary should be written last, after you ve written the rest of the plan; each paragraph should be a summary of the more detailed, related section of the plan.

    2. Business Overview

    In your overview, include details regarding your business’s history, vision and/or mission, objectives, and your ownership structure.

    3. Products and Services

    Expand upon your products and services, including features and benefits, competitive advantages, and, if marketing a product, how and where your products will be produced.

    4. Industry overview

    The industry overview is your opportunity to demonstrate the viability of your business by discussing the size and growth of your industry, the key markets within your industry, how your customers will buy your products or services, and which markets you’ll be targeting.

    5. Marketing Strategy

    Here you describe your target market segments, your competition, how you ll differentiate your products or services, and your products’ or services’ unique selling proposition (USP).

    • Discuss product or service pricing and promotion, including how your promotional programs will appeal to each of your target market segments.
    • Provide a plan of traditional and guerrilla marketing tactics, such as tradeshows, press-magnet events, social media marketing (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, etc.), networking, and print, media, or online advertising. Include the cost associated with each tactic.
    • Describe how your products or services will be sold (e.g. storefront, online, wholesalers), and your target markets’ buying cycle.

    6. Operations Plan

    Provide a profile of your management team, your human resources plan, your business location(s) and facilities, your production plan (if selling a product), and an overview of day-to-day operations.

    7. Financial plan

    Some believe this is the most important part of a plan – so much so, it’s worth dedicating up to 80% of your time to writing this section. You ll need to show three years’ worth of projected financial statements, including income statements, pro-forma balance sheets, and monthly cash flow and annual cash flow statements. Summarize each statement into a few easy-to-understand sentences and put these in a cover page for the statements. Be sure to document all of the assumptions you used in forecasting your revenues and expenses.

    Download the Small Business BC How to Write a Business Plan checklist and start planning for your business success.

    Business Plan Resources

    Here are some resources to help you with your business plan:

    Import / Export Business Registration Resources:

    Business Plan Review:

    Business Plan Guides:

    Upcoming Seminars





    Tags : , , , , ,

    How to Write a Bakery Business Plan #business #school

    #bakery business plan

    #

    Sugar and spice and everything nice that’s what bakeries are made of, right? The model looks easy enough when it seems like a new cupcake bakery opens every week.

    Private research firm AnythingResearch.com listed bakeries and baked goods as its eighth fastest-growing industry hospitable to small business this year, saying “growth may be the result of people cutting back on larger entertainment expenses (e.g. vacations) and choosing instead to spend more on daily indulgences.”

    Without the right recipe, however, dreams of getting a bakery off the ground could crumble like a cookie. This guide will show you how to perfect your recipe for success.

    How to Write a Bakery Business Plan: Conduct a Market Study

    There’s little doubt that bakeries are big. Bakeries, pastry shops, and bagel sellers are growing at a rate of 5 percent, according to AnythingResearch.com. To figure out if a bakery can provide you with a sweet payoff, however, you’ve got to have a plan.

    Start with an in-depth market study that profiles the target customer base, current sales in the market area for the product category, pricing and product features of competitors, plans for differentiation in the proposed products and expected sales, recommends Kirk O’Donnell, vice president/education at the American Institute of Baking .

    Next, after determining a research-based sales estimate, look at cost structure, which O’Donnell says starts with building and equipment. He suggests the following questions:

    How much building space is needed?
    What is the cost of the building space?
    Do you need flexibility for expansion?
    What is the specific equipment needed?
    What is the cost of installation of equipment?
    Will you need vehicles for transportation?

    Once these costs are known, then costs of ingredients and packaging can be determined from sales projections and current commodity costs, O’Donnell said. But don’t forget staffing needs, transportation and distribution. Determine the number of people needed for production, sales, and their projected salary and benefits.

    Finally, estimate all overhead costs and sources of income to help determine your required financing.

    Sound like too much work? Maybe you can follow the route taken by Paul Sapienza, owner of Sapienza Bake Shop in upstate New York.

    “I took over from my dad who didn’t ask for one,” he says, laughing.

    How to Write a Bakery Business Plan: Software or Business Professional?

    No need to worry about your lack of business school credentials. Online resources can assist in formulating your bakery business plan such as this sample on Bplans.com. The “Cupcakes Take the Cake” blog had an active discussion about a year ago featuring a video log of Cincinnati’s Funky Brick Bakery efforts to launch its business. And there’s software, such as Business Plan Pro, to help you along.

    Neither O’Donnell nor Sapienza is completely sold on the software, however.

    “The software that I have seen for bakery management normally focuses on inventory management, scheduling and record-keeping,” O’Donnell says. “In other words, (it’s) a help in managing a business, but not in writing a business plan.”

    Sapienza, vice president of operations for the Retail Bakers of America. recommends paying a professional to write the plan or asking a b-school professor for advice.

    Kevin VanDeraa, owner of Cupcake in Minneapolis, opted for a hybrid approach when developing his plan. He used software and took advantage of the local chapter of SCORE. which prides itself on being “counselors to America’s small businesses.”

    “Partner with a small business association. There are a lot of free resources,” VanDeraa says. Most importantly, he suggests viewing the plan as an evolving document, not something to be filed away once the business gets going. “Go back to it and compare your estimates to your actuals,” he says, “and you’ll have a more realistic sense of how to move the company forward.”

    Dig Deeper: How to Write a Great Business Plan

    How to Write a Bakery Business Plan: What’s in a Name?

    Never underestimate the pull of a good name.

    When Adriano Lucas opened a New York City bakery called The Best Chocolate Cake in the World, the press, well, ate it up. The mini-chain, which only has one U.S. location, got mentions in both The New York Times and New York magazine before its grand opening in June. Hoards of hungry choco-holics consumed 400 cakes during opening weekend alone.

    The key to a good name, according to BabyCakes NYC owner Erin McKenna, is one that strikes a good mix between “warmth and comfort.”

    “The name needs to be short and immediately identifiable to the product, not trying to sound too girly or precious,” she said.

    For VanDeraa, picking out the name was the hardest part.

    “I wanted the name to convey both coffee shop and bakery, to imply you’re going to get both here,” he says. “I had to give it up for a while. I was just calling it ‘Minneapolis coffee shop.'”

    Inspiration struck while he was having margaritas with friends. Cupcake was an immediate hit. “I was really lucky,” VanDeraa says. “It was before the trend.”

    How to Write a Bakery Business Plan: Let Them Eat (cup)Cake?

    Of course, VanDeraa is referring to the cupcakery explosion.

    The much-hyped “Sex and the City” movie sequel helped to put cupcakes in the news again. Hello Cupcake in Washington, D.C. even had a cupcake/movie tie-in with specialty treats inspired by each character.

    The popularity of cupcakes is good news for owners like McKenna, who opened her second vegan bakery, BabyCakes LA, in January. But even good news has its limits, she said.

    “I don’t think cupcakes are the problem. The press swooning over them so much that people want to by nature reject them is the problem,” McKenna says. “If someone’s going to open up a cupcake bakery, I don’t think they should play up the adorability of it. Just have more a focus on the food.”

    Van Deraa found in his market research that a standalone bakery concept didn’t appeal much to his target audience. They wanted soups and sandwiches, too, he said.

    He adjusted his model. In addition to baked goods, Cupcake also serves breakfast all day, quiche, paninis, salads and soups. And six different categories of cupcakes simple, gourmet, premium, party line, baby and celebration.

    The diverse offerings drive the business year-round, he says. In winter, customers come for the soup. Many come in daily for their morning coffee. Some have never even tasted the cupcakes, he said.

    “It’s helped us as a business to have more offerings especially if there’s a diet fad,” he says, with a laugh. “That was a big stroke of luck.”

    The bakery-and-restaurant model like Panera Bread and Dunkin Donuts is the more profitable model for most owners, Sapienza says.

    “I’m aware that Mrs. Fields and Famous Amos started in the kitchen, but very few make the leap (to a successful business),” he says, adding that “cupcakes might be the exception to the rule.”

    Whatever model you choose, don’t forget to add the following to your recipe: two cups of passion, an extra serving of hard work and an ounce of luck.





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    How to write a perfect professional email in English in 5 steps – Global

    #business emails

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    How to write a perfect professional email in English in 5 steps

    For most of us, email is the most common form of business communication so it s important to get it right. Although emails usually aren t as formal as letters, they still need to be professional to present a good image of you and your company.

    How to write a formal email

    Follow these five simple steps to make sure your English emails are perfectly professional.

    1. Begin with a greeting
    2. Thank the recipient
    3. State your purpose
    4. Add your closing remarks
    5. End with a closing

    Download our free ebook: Everyday English Vocabulary 38 pages which points useful words and English phrases to help you have a better understanding of what’s going on around you.

    Begin with a greeting

    Always open your email with a greeting, such as Dear Lillian . If your relationship with the reader is formal, use their family name (eg. Dear Mrs. Price ). If the relationship is more casual, you can simply say, Hi Kelly . If you don t know the name of the person you are writing to, use: To whom it may concern or Dear Sir/Madam .

  • Thank the recipient

    If you are replying to a client s inquiry, you should begin with a line of thanks. For example, if someone has a question about your company, you can say, Thank you for contacting ABC Company . If someone has replied to one of your emails, be sure to say, Thank you for your prompt reply or Thanks for getting back to me . Thanking the reader puts him or her at ease, and it will make you appear more polite.

  • State your purpose

    If you are starting the email communication, it may be impossible to include a line of thanks. Instead, begin by stating your purpose. For example, I am writing to enquire about … or I am writing in reference to … .

    Make your purpose clear early on in the email, and then move into the main text of your email. Remember, people want to read emails quickly, so keep your sentences short and clear. You ll also need to pay careful attention to grammar, spelling and punctuation so that you present a professional image of yourself and your company.

  • Add your closing remarks

    Before you end your email, it s polite to thank your reader one more time and add some polite closing remarks. You might start with Thank you for your patience and cooperation or Thank you for your consideration and then follow up with, If you have any questions or concerns, don t hesitate to let me know and I look forward to hearing from you .

  • End with a closing

    The last step is to include an appropriate closing with your name. Best regards . Sincerely . and Thank you are all professional. Avoid closings such as Best wishes or Cheers unless you are good friends with the reader. Finally, before you hit the send button, review and spell check your email one more time to make sure it s truly perfect!

  • Aren t you an EF English Live student yet? See the general and business English course in action by requesting a one month for only one dollar* trial. Find more information about essential professional English tips here .

    Wil is a writer, teacher, learning technologist and keen language learner. He’s taught English in classrooms and online for nearly 10 years, trained teachers in using classroom and web technology, and written e-learning materials for several major websites. He speaks four languages and is currently looking for another one to start learning.

    Wil





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    Write Your Way to a Win: Business Proposal 101 #buying #a #business

    #business proposal examples

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    Write Your Way to a Win: Business Proposal 101

    It’s a tough world these days, especially for entrepreneurs who have stiff competition in their business niches. Keeping current clients and adding to your client portfolio is the only way you both stay afloat and grow, and no matter how good your products and/or services may be, there are always competitors who want your current business and will go after the same potential clients you do.

    Many calls for business proposals are pretty impersonal – governments and public agencies may advertise for bids on projects, products, or other services, give a bid deadline date, and publish the details of their needs. They do this because, by law, they are required to.

    For example, a public school district looking to build a new school will publish a “call for bids” for the project. Local and regional contract management firms will then put their proverbial “hats” in the ring and present their proposals. The local school board will receive the bids and make a decision on the contract award, and they are accountable to the public for this decision.

    Not so in the private sector. A company is free to make contract decisions as it wishes, having only minimal accountability to their Boards for poor performance and/or cost overrides. Still, business owners seeking new clients and customers must perform well if they intend to keep those clients.

    Before You Put Pencil to Paper

    Writing business proposals involves a lot of initial legwork. Once you become aware that a potential client is looking for proposals in your business niche, you know you will want to develop a sound, clear, and precise business proposal, and there are many pre-panning activities you will want to conduct.

    • Do Your Research: If you don’t know much about the potential client, you need to study up! Go to the website and read everything! You will get names of decision-makers, get an idea of its business model, how long it been in business, its goals, and it financial picture – all good information to have!
    • Arrange a Meeting with Management: You may not get into see the CEO, but you should make an appointment with as high level a manager as possible. During this meeting you want the client to clarify goals and needs, so be a good listener and take notes! You really want to get clear budget parameters too, so you have a financial framework for your proposal. While the focus of this meeting must be on the client, try to tout yourself a bit – talk about your successes with similar organizations/industries.
    • Develop Your Solutions: Once understand the goals and needs, you are prepared to brainstorm and to develop the most effective and cost-effective ways to serve the client’s needs. For example, if you are in the property management business, and you have become aware that a large apartment complex owner is looking for a new outside property management firm, you meet with that owner or his rep. You ask about his issues and problems and what made him unhappy with the previous management. These will be critical points in your solution proposal.

    Writing the Proposal

    Writing a business proposal is a lengthy and time-consuming process, so plan enough time to do it right! And if you don’t know how to write a business proposal, you need to be a quick learner. There are templates and samples online that you can study; visit a fellow entrepreneur who has experience and ask for his/her help. Generally, though, your sections will be as follows:

    1. Describe the client’s current situation: In the case of the apartment owner, repair and maintenance have not been acceptable; perhaps screenings of tenants has not be thorough enough; perhaps the management company has not been responsive to tenant issues. These make up the current situation.
    2. State your goals, objectives, and methodologies for meeting the needs of the client and remedying the current situation. Perhaps more resident maintenance staff are required; perhaps the office is under staffed; perhaps there are not clear and consistent policies and practices to respond to repair calls and to conduct those tenant screenings – systems and accountability need to be put into place!
    3. Time and cost: Here is where you get to the heart of the matter. How long, and along what timeline, will you implement the changes, install the equipment, etc. And, critically important, the costs must be carefully and clearly broken down, so that each facet of your solution methodology has a specific cost. In this way, if the client has to cut back on something, he can make informed decisions.
    4. Your conclusion: Do not be afraid to praise yourself. What are the benefits of choosing your company? Point out your successes with similar projects and provide references.
    5. Binding: Make certain that your proposal is bound in a professional manner and submit several copies so that decision-makers can all have their own.

    A Word About the Prose

    If you are not a good writer, get someone who is. You never know who will be reading your proposal, so make sure there are no grammatical, punctuation or spelling errors. And above all, keep it simple. No one wants to struggle through long and complex sentences with academic-level vocabulary.

    How to Write a Business Proposal Letter

    A business proposal letter is really a formal and much more dignified “cold call.” You are trying to drum up business by introducing yourself to potential clients who may or may not have heard of you before. The format of the letter should, of course, be business formal and should be impeccable in grammar and style. Here are some pointers:

    1. Find out who the decision-maker is before you write the letter. It should be addressed to that individual.
    2. Your opening paragraph should catch their attention quickly. Using saving money will do the trick, so tell them that you can save them money and/or make their operations more cost-efficient.
    3. The next paragraph should provide more detail about your product or service and describe how it saves money or is more efficient.
    4. The third paragraph should speak to your qualifications. How long have you been doing this? Name past and current clients who have experienced cost savings and greater efficiency with your help. Be certain that you have the approval of these clients to use their names, for they may be contacted.
    5. Closing paragraph should be short and give some call to action. Either ask them to call you or tell them you will call in a few days for an appointment.

    Happy proposal writing!

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    Andy Preisler is a blogger at Grabmyessay where he came just after he finished his second bachelor. He is very passionate about helping those that are new to the professional aspects of writing, whether it is business related or academic. He is very experienced writer as his field of interests includes education content marketing and business etiquette. If you have any questions please feel free to contact Andy via social profiles.

    Posts by Andy Preisler





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