Screen shot 2011-05-16 at 2.23.09 PM.pngFor this assignment you are to write a formal proposal letter seeking my approval to begin a  project that will lead to the completion of a formal Business Plan. The proposal is the first document in a sequence that will lead up to the final report or plan. This sequence includes the proposal,  branding project, business correspondence,  a progress report, and a formal business plan. When writing the proposal, think of me as someone who wants to be sure that you are choosing a project that you are qualified to do and one that you might actually want to do in the near future.

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While I am willing to consider a wide range of business plans. In reading your proposal letter, I will be looking for answers to the following questions:


  • What business will your report address? Have you clearly defined your business?
  • Who are potential investors? Who will read the report? What is your position relative to your readers?
  • Why is this business attractive for these readers? What's at stake?
  • Do you have a handle on what needs your business will serve? Have you established a feasible plan? Have you thought about competition?
  • What makes you qualified to carry out the project? How is the topic related to your major? Your career plans? I prefer projects that give you practice writing the kind of document that you may have to prepare on the job.
  • What will it take to gather the necessary information and complete your business plan? Can you complete your report in the time left in this semester, using resources readily available to you?
  • Do you have a work plan for your project , a plan that shows specifically when certain activities must be completed this semester if you are to finish the project on time?



Proposal Format


The format of this assignment should be that of a formal business letter. Protocols for business letter composition are provided below. Select your information and organize it in such a way that it is persuasive and accessible. Include the following items:


  • An introduction that tells me why you are writing.
  • A section on the business, including an explicit well-developed business plan statement. 
  • A section describing your plans for researching the industry and developing a new business. Convince me that you know what kind of information you'll need and where to find it. Include an analysis of your investors and what information they'll need in order to finance your plan.
  • A discussion of your credentials. Convince me that you have the background and resources necessary to conduct your research.
  • A schedule. Convince me that you know what activities your research will require and that you can get them done on time.
  • A conclusion that formally requests permission to proceed.


You should probably begin your letter by convincing me that a significant need exists that calls for the business you propose. In short, how will your business prosper? Sometimes convincing the reader will be relatively easy, but other times it will be difficult to get your reader to acknowledge that a significant problem exists.

After you have convinced your reader of a need for your work, include a detailed description of your work plan. Will you go to the library and research the latest techniques in your field? Will you write a computer program? Will you investigate the cost of new equipment? Will you talk to people who have run similar businesses? Some combination of these? Convince me that this plan for research is the right path leading to a profitable business and that the time exists in this semester to do the work well. This work plan must also be plotted with time; you must indicate what work you will be doing during each of the weeks left in the semester. Sections of your proposal should also detail the resources you have to start this business and your qualifications to do this work.


Format as a letter: 

  • Use block style.  
  • Employ headings and lists to render your information readily accessible.

Further Resources


Explore the following Web sites for further information on this lesson's topic:

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