A long term forecast is not a necessary part of a basic business plan. However, it is an excellent tool to help you open up your thinking about the company's future. Furthermore, venture capitalists will almost always want a long term forecast to get a feel for growth prospects.

Forecasting sales of your product or service is the starting point for the financial projections. The sales forecast is the key to the whole financial plan, so it is important to use realistic estimates.

The Cash Flow Projection is the best way to forecast working capital needs. Begin with the amount of Cash on Hand you expect to have. Project all the Receipts and Paid Outs for the year. If CASH POSITION gets dangerously low or negative, you will need to pump in more cash to keep the operation afloat. Many profitable businesses have gone under because they could not pay the bills while waiting for money to flow in.

Cash is the financial lifeblood of your business. Your creditors do not care about profit; they want to be paid with cash. You must predict when you will actually collect from customers.


Throughout this guide, you’ll find case studies, examples, and expert guidance on every aspect of small business finances. You’ll see that our goal is the same as yours—to make your business financially successful.

This new, expanded edition of our initial guidebook represents the second phase of an initiative by SCORE and The Office Depot Foundation to assist nonprofit organizations in building their capacity to serve their communities.

Workbook, How to Start or Grow Your Business in Tennessee can be downloaded.

Selection of Resources, including workbooks, presentations, contact information and more.

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Helpful Guide to help you learn about Marketing for Search Engines - while boosting your website.

Generic plan format that fits most businesses.

Leads you through the process of creating a business plan for your new business.

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