Norms Surrounding Business Plans and Their Effect on Entrepreneurial Behavior

Babson College Entrepreneurship Research Conference (BCERC) 2007

Frontiers of Entrepreneurship Research 2007

11 Pages Posted: 6 Dec 2007

See all articles by Tomas Karlsson

Tomas Karlsson

Jönköping International Business School

Benson Honig

McMaster University


Business plans are important management tools for new ventures. One indication of their importance is that about 10 million business plans are written each year, world-wide (Gumpert, 2002). Others are that business plans quite frequently surface in entrepreneurship education, governmental promotion of entrepreneurship as well as in the external financing of new ventures. Universities conduct or endorse business plan competitions, including Harvard, Stanford, Wharton and MIT (Honig, 2004). Banks, venture capitalists, angel investors, incubator managers and assistance agencies are other potential promoters of business plans. There are a plethora of books dedicated to explaining how to write business plans, typically suggesting that business planning is valuable and important to the new firm (Poon, 1996; Stevenson, et al., 1999; Timmons, 1999; Lambing and Kuehl, 2000; Wickham, 2001; Kuratko and Hodgetts, 2001). It is fair to say that the entrepreneurship field abounds with advice about how to write business plans.

Keywords: Entrepreneurship

JEL Classification: M13

Suggested Citation

Karlsson, Tomas and Honig, Benson, Norms Surrounding Business Plans and Their Effect on Entrepreneurial Behavior. Babson College Entrepreneurship Research Conference (BCERC) 2007, Frontiers of Entrepreneurship Research 2007, Available at SSRN:

Tomas Karlsson (Contact Author)

Jönköping International Business School ( email )

Jönköping, 55111

Benson Honig

McMaster University ( email )

1280 Main Street West
Hamilton, Ontario L8S 4M4

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