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Writing Your Business Plan
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The Importance of Your Company History

The ‘company history’ section is where you write a historical summary of your business. In other words, in this section you describe your company’s past. Even if you're a brand-new startup, documenting your company’s "past" is vital to your success!

If you’re just getting started in your business, you may feel that you don’t have a history. Not true! If you think about it, the background and experience of the speaker are some of the most important aspects of a professional speaker’s business.

Since your experience and background are important, your Company History should contain your relevant personal history. Notice that I stress “relevant” history. Your company history should contain those items that are important to the success of your speaking business, but other items — regardless of how proud you may be of them — should be omitted.

For instance, if your educational background is important to your ability to speak on your topic, it should be listed. But if your studies were in a completely different area than the field in which you speak, don’t bother listing your educational accomplishments. You’re understandably proud of them, but they’re really not an asset to your business.

Similarly, awards and recognitions should be listed, but they should be limited to those that are relevant to your speaking topic. That you were your high school’s Spelling Bee champion is unimportant and shouldn’t be listed as a historical asset… unless, of course, your program topic involves spelling skills in some way.

In many ways, your Company History may resemble a resume. And that’s fine. Just keep in mind that, unlike a resume, you’re not trying to impress anyone. Your Company History should be a realistic assessment of your “historical assets.”

Of course, “where you’re going is a lot more important than where you’ve been.” So don’t spend a lot of time on this section. A page or two of relevant historical information is generally quite sufficient.

Once written, this section probably will not require much updating. (After all, your history isn’t likely to change.) Of course, if your business focus changes significantly, the relevance of your past activities will also change. But for the most part, once you’ve written this section, you probably won’t need to change it much.

Here are Insights # 11 - 20 (of 28 total Insights)
in the focus Writing Your Business Plan....
11: The Importance of Your Company History — The ‘company history’ section is where you write a historical summary of your business. In other words, in this section you describe your company’s...
12: Forming Your Business — Even if you're going to be a one-person business (which most pro speakers are), you need to define your business — what sort of business structure...
13: Choosing the Right Business Structure — Let’s tackle the business structure first. Are you (or will you be) a sole proprietorship, a ‘standard’ corporation, an ‘S’ corporation, a...
14: Choosing Your Business Name — If you’re a sole proprietorship, then your personal name is also the name of your business. Or putting it another way, you are your business, so your...
15: Your Personnel Plan — The ‘Personnel’ section of your business plan describes your personnel assets, your human resources.... in other words, the people who make your...
16: Your Product Plan — The next section of your business plan is a description of your products and services. Products are, obviously, your books, CDs, DVDs, and other...
17: Your Marketing Plan — Your Marketing Plan For example, you need to define who you are marketing to. Who is your Target Market? Do you have more than one Target Market? Is...
18: Your Financial Plans — Your Financial Plans are the parts of a business plan that tend to be least considered by speakers. And that’s a shame, because your financial plan...
19: Developing Your (Yuck!) Budget — Quite simply, your budget should address two questions — First, what are your primary sources of income? And second, what are your major expenditures...
20: Your Detailed (Double Yuck!) Budget — The previous session shows the importance of having a budget. But there are many questions that this simple budget cannot answer. For instance, how...

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