Call for help: 3 steps to take when you think your business is in financial trouble
There’s no doubt about it: being a business owner can be tough. But while we’re happy to celebrate the good times, when things get tough business owners can often put their heads in the sand rather than ask for help.
Do you lie awake worrying about your business’ cash flow or low bank balance, or whether you can afford to pay your staff’s wages? If you do, then it’s time to get help from experts you can trust.
Where do you start?
The best place to start is with your numbers. Look at your previous year’s budget. We’ve already talked about why it’s important for businesses to have a budget, but if you don’t have one for your business now’s the time to get it done. And while you’re at it, get a cash flow forecast to be sure you can fund your expenses and still have enough in the bank for reinvestment or any large one-off payments that come in.
Bring in the experts
When it comes to preparing your budget and cash flow forecast, make sure it’s done properly. Unless you have an accounting background don’t even think about doing it yourself. And don’t use any online programs to do it either. Use an accountant or adviser you trust, or at the very least a bookkeeper who has a clear grasp on your numbers.
Yes, it will take time and cost money. But this is your business we’re talking about. Believe me, it will be one of the best investments you’ll ever make.
Looking to the future
Sit down with your accountant/adviser/bookkeeper and look at your forecasts for the next month, quarter and year. Do the sales look realistic? What about the expenses—how do they look? Are there any large payments coming up that you’ll need to make provisions for so they don’t cripple your bank balance?
Map out these periods in your business, and make sure all your assumptions are accurate and conservative. Remember: when it comes to forecasts it’s always better to over-perform than under-perform.
Here are the three steps to getting your business back in financial shape (and keeping it there).
- Bring in your trusted experts early on—before any problems start.
- Look at the numbers, and create a budget and a cash flow forecast for the next 12 months.
- Work with your accountant/adviser/bookkeeper to create a roadmap for your business you can track and be held accountable to.
Of course, if you don’t have a trusted accountant, adviser or bookkeeper who can help prepare your budget and cash flow forecast, get in touch with the team here at Equus Partners so we can help you get your business back on track.