Three Questions for Every Business Owner
1. How important is your business?
If your business provides your only source of income, then your business is extremely important to you. If your business fails, it’s worse than losing a job because not only do you lose your investment, there is no Severance Pay, nor is there any Employment Insurance.
Many small businesses are ‘Mom and Pop’ stores. In this case, the business is even more important because each partner will lose their respective source of income simultaneously. In addition, neither partner will receive any Severance Pay, nor will they get any Employment Insurance.
Even if the business is part-time or a hobby-business that provides a supplemental income, the chances are good that you have already adjusted your lifestyle to match that extra income. In which case, with the loss of your business, you may find that you are now spending more than you are earning.
2. How resilient is your business?
Today’s mentality is to sell – sell – sell, but there is more to running a business than selling. If you’re not making a profit, then more sales will only make things worse.
On the flip side, some business owners, amazingly, are more obsessed with spending money.
To quote a line from the musical ‘Evita’ –
“Accountants only slow things down – figures get in the way.”
Income and expenses are a balance, and they should be foremost and centre on every business owner’s mind.
Sadly, far too many businesses are riding on the brink of failure simply because their owners have no idea of the state of their business. The irony is, it costs virtually nothing to make a business resilient enough to weather the inevitable economic ups and downs, along with the occasional storms that lie ahead.
All it takes is a small investment of time.
3. How would you handle a disaster?
One day you may get to your place of business only to discover it has been burnt to the ground. One day you may discover that your Tax Agency has ‘frozen’ your bank accounts. One day you may find that your landlord has changed the locks on all the doors to your business. One day you may get a notice that your biggest customer has filed for bankruptcy, and your generous line of credit is now worthless.
And as we have experienced lately, a pandemic may come along and your business is ordered to shut down.
Many disasters can be covered by insurance, some can be foreseen, others can be prevented, and some can blind-side you. Regardless of the cause, when disaster strikes, emotions are ready, willing and able to take charge, and when they do, that is when matters usually go from bad to worse.
The Really Important Question
Before you think this won’t happen to your business, first take into account – many businesses fail in the first year, most are gone by year 5, and the rest usually start to stagnate at year 7. All these businesses are owned by people – like you – who thought this could not, or would not, happen to them.
Ask yourself why you think your business is immune?
People start businesses for all kinds of reasons, but they all have one thing in common – they all want a certain level of independence and freedom from the traditional workplace. This means they tend to go it alone.
Consequently, these business owners often feel that asking for help is a sign of weakness, but nothing could be further from the truth. For example – if you had a toothache, you could remove the tooth yourself. All you need is good pair of pliers and a mirror. But you know better. Instead, you would go to a dentist. Is that a sign of weakness? Of course not. In fact, you would most likely go for regular checkups to make sure that your teeth would not get to the state where they needed to be extracted in the first place.
So instead of risking your business – why not turn to us?
Helping small businesses is our business, and we do it very well!