Have you ever thought, if I could just make more money then I wouldn't be living client payment to client payment... then I would be rich?? (ok, maybe you haven't actually used the word rich but you catch my drift).
Well, I believe it isn't your income which determines your "richness." It's your spending habits. If you have bad spending habits, an increase in income will only mean an increase in spending. You get an extra client project and think "woohoo, I'm going on vacation!"
Suddenly, the extra money is gone and you didn't even go vacation yet. You didn't have extra money that you thought you would. Where did it go?
That is why you must focus on your spending habits. Here are some bookkeeper approved spending habits:
Over 3 years in business I've learned a lot the hard way... You know the feeling I'm sure! Today I'm sharing my top business tips to save you a headache or two:
Small expenses add up quickly.
Benjamin Franklin said, “Beware of little expenses; a small leak will sink a great ship.” Are you aware of the little expenses in your business? Or do you wonder what happens to your income each month? Don’t dismiss even the smallest expenses because they all add up!
Clear the clutter.
Keep your workspace clean so you can focus on your projects without distraction. It is harder to focus with piles of paperwork and other messes on your desk.
Keep a planner and write everything down.
If you are a business owner, having a planner (digital or paper) is a lifesaver. It keeps you organized, on schedule, and sane. Often, stress comes not from having too much to do, but from worrying about forgetting something. Writing everything down frees your brain up to do what's important.
Remember that everyone struggles.
You are not alone. It is easy to think that everyone around us has success and we are the only one struggling with failure and doubts. But the reality is that behind each successful business is a lot of dedication, hard work, failure, disappointment, and (most importantly) persistence. So if you've fallen down the rabbit hole of looking at everyone else's success and comparing it to your failures and disappointments, stop. Get up. Dust yourself off. And remember that the highlight reel is all you’re seeing...
Don’t get caught up in busywork.
Do you ever get caught up doing things that aren't really moving your business forward? Me too. Make sure every task counts. Don't do things just because other people do them. Instead, focus on the work that will actually move your business in the direction of your goals.
Build a community.
Genuine community is essential for our businesses to thrive. You cannot hide behind your Instagram account hoping people will notice and buy your product or service. You need to build a community: genuinely comment on people's posts, DM people you want to get to know better, and reach out to set up virtual meetups. Remember that you are not reaching out to people with the goal of them becoming a client. Your goal is to build a supporting community.
In my life I've been trying to be more intentional about the things I keep around. You know those clothes in the back of the closet you haven't worn for a year? I've been learning to let those kind of things go. In my business, I've simplified my discovery call booking process by using Acuity. It holds all my appointment openings so people can schedule at their own convenience! (btw, if you want to simplify your bookkeeping process, schedule a free discovery call using my Acuity link!).
Does your desk ever get messy? Mine does quite often. One thing I've used to help cut the clutter is file boxes to keep near my desk. In them are pretty file folders to hold different categories of paperwork. I have one for each client, several for my personal business, and some for courses I am taking. I always have one folder in the front labeled "in progress." That way if I haven't finished a client's project by the end of the day I can clean off my desk and put the client's folder in there for easy access the next day.
Do the Thing you dread doing (or delegate it).
You know those things you dread doing and put off for months? Maybe it's cleaning out your desk drawer or filing your taxes or doing last month's (year’s!) bookkeeping. This week take the first step to accomplish it. You can also choose to delegate the task so you don't even have to worry about it anymore. Schedule a free discovery call today if you want to delegate your bookkeeping.
Instead the book Profit First recommends opening five checking accounts to operate your business. I personally like a modified approach using four accounts. Those four bank accounts are:
How do I use these accounts? Some tips for you:
First, how much to transfer? Start with sending 15% of income to the Tax account, 5% to the Profit account, and 30% to the Operating Expense account. For example, if $1,000 is deposited into the Income account you’ll distribute it as follows:
$150 to Tax
$50 to Profit
$300 to Operating Expense
You’ll also want to pay yourself 40% (so, $400 in our example) by transferring it to your personal bank account.
Second, when should you make the transfers? Twice a month is plenty. Pick two days a month to make all your transfers. The second and fourth Friday of the month will work or you can do the 10th and 25th of the month like Profit First recommends.
Finally, always allocate the money before spending any of it. Don’t pay your bills from the Income account then transfer the remaining money to the other accounts. You must get in the habit of making transfers first then paying bills from the money in the Operating Expense account and no where else.
Note: these percentages are only estimates. If you find yourself not having enough money each month either reevaluate your spending or increase/decrease the transfer percentages as needed.
Yep, it’s true. If you operate out of one checking account some of the money is for taxes, some is to pay yourself… and the remainder is to pay expenses. If you think that all of it is available to pay business expenses you’ll never pay yourself and have a real problem come tax time.