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Starting an Online Business All-in-One For Dummies®, 3rd Edition by Joel Elad, Shannon Belew

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Getting Help to Write the Plan

Even though you will probably feel better about writing a business plan after you read the rest of this chapter, more options can help make writing one easier. When creating a plan feels like more than you can handle alone, the solution is to hire a professional to write it for you or purchase business plan software that walks you through the process.

Don't think that a business plan template or other software package is cheating. Your goal is to get your business off the ground — don't close any doors or turn away any help. The money you spend on your business plan is an investment that has the potential to pay back many times; the time you spend on your business plan can likewise shorten the time you must spend later in preparing your business for success.

Determining when to hire a professional

Not everyone needs outside help to construct a solid business plan. If you're starting the business part-time or you plan to be a one-person company for a while, the plan doesn't necessarily have to be lengthy and complicated.

images As a sole proprietor (one-person company), part-time operator, or homebased business owner, you might write a condensed version of the business plan, with the same sections but less detail. Rather than use a 20-page document, you might be able to achieve the same objective in only 8 pages.

Alternatively, if you need to secure a large ...

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