Now that the turkey is eaten and the dishes are done, it’s a great time for small business owners to take a minute to be thankful for the past fiscal year and prepare for the next one. You’re already digging into your books preparing for taxes, why not go one step further and prepare for the New Year?
Step 1. Get Your Books in Order
Small business owners often wear many hats. They’re responsible for creating a business, drumming up new business, and recording the business they’ve had. Add to this list everything that comes along with each of these steps.
You, as a business owner, are responsible for it all, but that does not mean YOU have to do it all. Consider hiring a bookkeeper and/or an accountant. Having clean and clear books can lead to better decision-making and more money in the end.
Step 2. Determine Your Position
- Examine your finances.
- Your Balance Sheet will take inventory of your business’s assets, liabilities and equity.
- Your Income Statement should give you a realistic picture of whether your company is profitable or not.
- Your Cash Flow Statement shows where the money’s gone. You can break this number down into operating activities, including revenue and expense numbers; investing activities for items like assets purchased and assets sold; and cash flow, including loans and loan repayments.
- Look at your goals from last year.
With your Balance Sheet, Income and Cash Flow Statements, you have a pretty clear picture where your company is but is that where you wanted to be? Put some thought into what is working and what isn’t. And if need be, adjust either your business model or your business goals so your heading in the right direction.
- Evaluate your tax strategies.
You know your business, but do you know taxes? Consider talking to an accountant and/or tax lawyer for advice on tax strategies. A little of advice could save you big.
Step 3. Envision Your Future
If you’ve done the previous steps, you’ve done the groundwork. You have a pretty clear picture of where you’ve been and where you are. But, do you know where you want to go? Spend some time answering this question. Then map out how to get there.
Step 4. Finally, Enjoy Your Success
We at Transition360 know that the work of a small business owner is never done. The days can be long and the demands great. With that being said, we encourage everyone to take some time during this holiday season to celebrate the successes of this past year, both professionally and personally.
Remember the quality of life is found in the delicate balance of working hard for what you want and being thankful for what you have.
Here’s to a successful 2018!