While some of you may be in your busy time for others the post Christmas period is a quiet time to be used to get ready for the year ahead.
Either way, here are five things businesses should be doing to help the cash register ring (or the EFTPOS payment facility beeping) for the rest of the year.
- Review business basics and cashflow
Get the key elements to managing your cashflow under control: your stock, creditors and debtors. Chase up any late paying debtors and get rid of excess stock. Do you need to change your systems to make monitoring these items easier?
- Get everyone on same page
Does everyone understand your business vision and goals for the year? Make sure each staff member is clear on what they have to do to meet these goals and has the skills and procedures to do the job.
- Tidy up
If you didn’t get to this before Christmas, clean, maintain and tidy the shop, factory, work car or ute. A well-presented business looks more professional, engenders staff pride and gives customers confidence in the quality of your business. First impressions count. Maintaining your assets will also prolong their life.
- Review 2014 accounts
If you don’t have the accounts from your accountant, get them. Your accounts are tools for managing your business, not just something you need for the Tax Office. Look at last year’s figures and your business plan to work out what’s working and what’s not working. Ask yourself what’s changed this year and what opportunities and risks lay ahead? You don’t have to do this alone. Your staff, customers, accountant, business banker and coach can all offer feedback and advice. Pick three priority areas to change.
- Forecast cash flow
Do a forecast for the year and make a diary entry to update it monthly. This is one of the best ways to spot issues before they become problems. It also helps you make sure you have the necessary funds in place when you need them.
Adam Shearer is a business banking specialist with the Hunter-based Greater Building Society. Adam has more than 23 years experience in the financial services industry as a business banker, loan broker and financial adviser. He has diplomas in business (accounting) and financial planning.