Over the years I’ve been learning from all the companies I’ve worked with –the ones that are fantastically successful, the ones that scrape by and the ones that didn’t make it, and I’ve noticed that successful business owners have common traits.
- Firstly they have enough cash to get through difficult times. Every business will have bad times as well as good, there are always business cycles and the ones that will survive these are the ones with enough cash behind them. Strong companies have a cash buffer set aside. If you set up your business without enough cash you’ll be playing catch up for years.
- They have real grit. Every business has to fight to get established and then to survive and the obstacles are never ending (sorry, we did say we’d tell the truth) and the ones who get through that are able to keep the faith and keep going even when it looks impossible.
- They understand finance. They’ve learnt the language of finance, they know how to control their profitability and their cashflow. They know their figures every month and can see where they’re heading.
- They know where they’re going and what they want their business to be for them. This doesn’t mean you need a detailed 5 year business plan, but be really clear on your ambition for the business and how you want your life to look. There is an overwhelming amount of advice out there and if you’re not clear on what you want and where you want to go, you’ll get distracted by endless shiny things, new ways to do things and end up going round in circles that could take your business down.
- They tend to get advice when they need it, rather than making it up as they go along. The best companies we see have coaches; people who have already done it and can help them take the fast track.
We’ve created our “Guides and How To’s” section to help you fill in those finance knowledge gaps and hopefully explain the finance fundamentals without all the accountants jargon. We’ll keep adding to this resource centre to build up a library of financial know-how to give your business the edge.