Lauren glanced up from her paper-strewn desk. Her forehead was furrowed, and her lips were pulled into a thin line. I’ve seen this look a lot on small business owners. Her digital marketing firm was six years old, and she had 12 employees. The company was doing well. But… It Was Time for Me to …Read more
If you’re like most small business owners, you’re so busy running your company that the lines between bookkeeper and chief financial officer get blurred. A lot of times that’s because you or one of your people are responsible for both roles. Business leaders often ask me why they need one or the other—or both. My …Read more
“We hate keeping track of time,” the business owner told me, shaking her head. “We really suck at it. But I want to how efficiently our employees are working. I’d also like to see how our billable hours stack up against our competitors. Isn’t there another way than tracking time and labor dollars?” What I …Read more
We’ve all been in situations where we thought we made a clear request. “How much did we have in sales last month?” “What did we spend in overtime on that project?” “How do our profits look so far this year compared with last year?” When the information comes back, we know it doesn’t look right—but …Read more
The owner of a marketing communications business—let’s call her Christine—was sitting across from me. She cradled her head in her left hand and sighed. Then she looked over at me with large, pleading eyes and said, “My people have never been busier. But in the 10 years I’ve led this company, never have I struggled …Read more
What Can I Learn Today to Improve Our Financial Performance?
You can hear when an engine is running smoothly—or racing or sputtering. The same is true for the financial drivers of your business.
You just need to know what to listen for. The good news is that your numbers are talking all the time!
Here are the best ideas we can find on how to ask your business for the information you need, to understand what it says, and take action on what you learn.
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What’s on Your Reading List?
- The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don't Work and What to Do About It, by Michael E. Gerber
- Profit First: A Simple System to Transform Any Business from a Cash-Eating Monster to a Money-Making Machine, by Mike Michalowicz
- Managing by the Numbers: A Commonsense Guide to Understanding and Using Your Company’s Financials, by Chuck Kremer, Ron Rizzuto and John Case