One new business is started every minute in the United States. Some economists predict that more than 40% of Americans will be self-employed by 2020.
Eighty-eight percent of the Fortune 500 companies that existed in 1955 no longer exist today. Fifty percent of new businesses close within 4 years. Only a third of those new businesses survive 10 years or more. Forbes contributor Eric Wagner says 8 out of 10 new businesses fail within the first 18 months of initiation.
A recent Entrepeneur.com article lists decision-making as one of the 8 biggest challenges for new entrepreneurs, stating "new entrepreneurs are forced to make hundreds of decisions a day, from big, company-impacting decisions, to tiny, hour-affecting ones."
This list of 41 resources is designed to make some of the decision-making a little less stressful. Used as a starting point, this list might inform new entrepreneurs of a few resources they never even knew they needed.
A business plan is necessary if an entrepreneur plans to borrow money from a financial institution. Funders want to know you have a solid business strategy that includes an exit plan. But, business planning is important for other reasons as well.
Business plans also help entrepreneurs decide if and when they will need funding. The plan will help establish key objectives, set priorities, and plan future expansions.
#1. Entrepreneur.com: This business plan template gallery is powered by SeamlessDocs. It includes an executive summary, a non-disclosure agreement, a marketing plan, and a business plan overview.
#2. SCORE: The SCORE business plan walks entrepreneurs through writing their plan with a series of 150 questions, all divided into sections. Entrepreneurs can work through sections in any order and skip sections that do not apply to them.