Every small business owner knows exactly how important it is to better understand their financial performance. But tracking expenses and profits can be a cumbersome, complex and time-consuming task; and most business owners are strapped for time. Unfortunately, many don't have very deep pockets, especially when they are starting out on their business ventures and don't have the ability to pay someone to handle this aspect of their business either.
Focus on automation
The key ingredient to the success of your business lies in your relationship with numbers. However, there are certain tools that can be leveraged to reduce the technical processes significantly. While it's crucial that you have the skilled team members to handle this task, automation is something you should focus on as well.
The sooner you do this, the more you will be able to go through your numbers without feeling the pain. It wasn't so long ago that getting the right information from your accounting software was no less than a nightmare. Inputting data used to be tedious and time-consuming or you would have to pay bookkeepers a hefty amount to handle the job for you.
However, the introduction of various effective cloud-based apps has made it extremely easy and convenient to automate financial functions. You'll utilise your time and money more efficiently, taking the technical tasks off of your plate and freeing up precious hours to work on other important aspects of your business.
The right team
Once you have a good accounting system in place, your next area of focus should be to build a core financial team that consists of your accountant, your trusted banker, your coach and your attorney. Not only will they help you make much smarter decisions, but will help protect your business, which is your biggest investment. Take a look at the roles these professionals play and how they can help:
Your accountant should support you right through the tax prep time. However, it's also a good idea to find an experienced tax advisor who is happy to answer the occasional query right through the year. Check with your peers and ask them to recommend an accountant, rather than just look online for one.
Today, most banking institutions encourage online-only services. Representatives at remote call centres are the ones you contact in case something goes wrong or you need some specific information. In this kind of a landscape, the banker is often an overlooked team member. But it's important to have a person with a direct line who can help you when something goes awry with your money. Business bankers are more than happy to learn more about your business and this relationship isn't something you have to pay for.
It's important to get referrals from individuals in your industry. When they have expertise in your business domain, the less time they spend trying to get in sync with your business workings; and the less you'll spend for their services. You would need an attorney for drafting contracts and agreements templates; this person should also be someone you can speed dial in case something goes wrong.
It's important to work with a credible business coach like the ones we at Max My Profit can provide. A coach will make sure that all actions you take to build your financial system supports your vision directly. They will help you with designing plans for all the work that's to be done, discuss trends, track sheets for metrics etc. Most importantly, they will ensure you leverage your financial team and that you don’t offload your financial responsibility to any one of these people.