Running your own business may just be the dream, but it can be as hectic as any job. Being your own boss certainly has its own perks, but now you suddenly find that you have more skills to learn.
To keep yourself from falling into a financial disaster, there are a few skills and strategies that you have to learn to keep your business afloat. You have to learn the basic stuff, such as simple accounting, applying for a loan, and making financial statements.
There are also some habits and practices that you should keep in mind to keep your finances in top shape. The following are just some tips to help you manage your business finances more effectively:
1. Monitor Your Books
It’s important for you to have an understanding of how your accounting system works and for you to monitor your books. You should keep track of the expenditures and the ins and outs of finances in your business, even if you have an accountant. This keeps you safe and free from being a victim of financial crimes.
You should also look into outstanding invoices. This helps you keep track if there’s wasteful spending going on in your business or embezzlement. Having the best graphing calculators handy can help you analyze your financial state via looking at the numbers. Thus, you can protect yourself before everything is too far gone.
2. Have Control
A business is an investment of time and money. There should be a measure of control within your business, so everyone is performing at their maximum capacity and saving finite resources. For example, there should be timekeeping controls that monitor the attendance of employees, so they don’t waste too much time on breaks or doing unproductive work. There are certain technological controls you can impose, such as a time monitoring system or voicemail and communications system.
3. Give Yourself A Salary
Many business owners fail to realize that they should give themselves a salary since they’re part of the business team.
It’s common for business owners to think that everything should go to day to day operations and investment in equipment, manpower, and talent.
They forget that they’re also spending time and their own skills on the business and should be paid as an owner. Thus, Part of your revenue should go to you as a salary. If your business fails to work out in the long-term, at least you would’ve paid yourself.
4. Invest In The Future
Don’t be satisfied with what you have. Aim for scalability and growth. You have to invest in resources, such as talent and materials to expand your business, and help it move into the future. If you have to improve on new technology or modify some processes, do so.
Your employees will love that you’re a visionary and that you’re interested in their career advancement, as well. Help your employees improve with your business by giving them training or education.
Your customers will also love you because of the better and more satisfactory products and services and the increased level of options for them within your business.
5. Make Paying Bills Attractive
Don’t be a victim of cash flow problems just because your customer isn’t paying up. Customers who don’t pay immediately are a common problem of many businesses, and there really is no way of avoiding it.
Instead, you can devise a strategy that makes paying bills more attractive. For example, you can encourage payment by giving a certain discount if the customer pays within a certain time period. After that period expires, they’ll have to pay in full. Take note that many customers will look forward to saving money no matter how small the amount and pay up.
6. Pay Your Taxes Every Month
If one big payment of taxes overwhelm you, change the time frame when you pay your taxes. You can opt to pay your taxes monthly so you can control it, plan for it, and treat it just like any monthly expenditure.
7. Look At Expenditures and Profits
You should analyze investments that are giving you good returns and ones that aren’t. Doing this can give you a clear picture of your next strategy and knowing which investments to discontinue.
During the lifetime of your business, not every product or service is going to turn out a profit, and its best to look at results objectively and measure profits and losses so you can move on or go to the next level in your business. Thus, you have to cut back spending on ventures that are not turning out a profit or are failing entirely.
8. Have Enough Capital
Capital is one of the most important foundations of a business. You need capital to build your business; to get started running your business, getting and building capital has to be one of the hardest steps.
You should keep your strategy at this stage realistic and plan out your capital as if you’re not expecting any revenue. Consider the startup amount you need for a business to be worth at least several months of living expenses.
9. Don’t Spend on Unnecessary Items
You may be overexcited to spend on items that help you expand your business, such as gadgets, machinery, and advertising materials. However, you should understand that your business expansion will depend on your revenues. You cannot spend on expansion if you’re not yet getting profits and returns from your initial investments.
Early on in your business, keep it basic and spend only on essentials. That way, you wouldn’t have to deal with cash flow blockage and find that you’re short on cash.
10. Rent Instead of Buy
Buying the equipment you need is not always a good idea when you can rent. Renting frees up your responsibility for maintenance costs and upgrades of equipment. Renting is always cheaper, especially if you’re not going to use a piece of equipment frequently. The same goes for real estate.
Renting an office space is more feasible than buying because you can better use your money on other investments that’ll help your business grow. Final Thoughts Managing a business is a balancing act, and it requires making sound financial decisions from the business owner. The financial aspect of the business is the lifeblood of a business, and it should be monitored frequently to make sure that the business is on its proper course. A business owner should be closely involved in all aspects of the business, especially the financial aspect, to avoid risks and fraud.