‘Give light and people will find the way.’ – Ella Baker
As a business owner in building and property development, there will be many times when it feels like you’re on your own as you’re managing the entire business. This industry has many demands and challenges, and you need to cover many bases.
One of the single biggest mistakes business owners make is that they try and do everything themselves.
The reality is, you can’t. At the very least, you shouldn’t. For you to personally manage your accounting and finances takes up far too much of your time and effort, which means it is taking time away from what you do best and, ultimately, costing your business money. Every hour you spend on administration results in an hour lost on doing the things that actually generate dollars.
You can’t be all things to all people, all of the time. The reality is that there are not enough hours in the day and there is not enough expertise in any individual to be able to achieve that. So, what do you need?
You need the support of others to ensure that you don’t leave a roof tile out of alignment or miss the final coat of paint in the ensuite.
Similarly, while you have the expertise to manage the operational functions well, you will need some assistance with the financial management of your business.
Because that’s not where your expertise lies. Your knowledge and experience is in building and property development, not financial requirements and obligations. While you know the basics, there is always more to learn when it comes to making your business as successful as it can be. For this reason, you need to have the right people supporting you that do.
Who can help? Your own personal chief financial officer (CFO)
A CFO is the most senior executive of a business who is responsible for its financial control and planning. They are in charge of all of the accounting functions of the business, including preparing financial statements and budgets, credit control, monitoring expenditure, managing cash flow, coordinating finance and capital raising, managing investment, managing all taxation and other compliance requirements, and reporting financial performance and financial data to the chief executive officer (CEO). You are the CEO.
When it comes to finances, the CEO has oversight of the business’s financial decisions and makes decisions around key investments. However, the CFO is the one who does the bulk of the management.
What do you do if you don’t have a CFO? Employ one?
Not all businesses can afford the luxury of employing a full-time CFO, particularly, small- to medium-sized businesses. So, what then? The answer is simple. You employ a virtual CFO.
Now I hear you ask, ‘What is a virtual CFO?’
A virtual CFO is essentially the same as a CFO, but fills the role on a part-time basis for a fraction of the cost of a full-time CFO.
The virtual CFO is your personal financial adviser – someone who becomes the trusted source for financial perspective. Someone you can trust who works closely with you and your business to help you make the right decisions to improve the financial management of your business, and your business’s performance as a result. In these tough economic times, a virtual CFO will provide you with the valuable insight you need to navigate your way to success.
Your virtual CFO will enable you to take advantage of a level of expertise not previously available to you, which will now enable you to run your operation while knowing that all your financial matters are being taken care of by a highly qualified and experienced adviser.
Outsourcing this part of your business makes perfect sense. If you have a plumbing issue, you hire a plumber. If you need an electrician, you get one. If you want to get fit, you engage a personal trainer. If you want a financially healthy business, you get yourself a virtual CFO.
Doing so will resolve your financial management issues.
You will no longer have to base all your financial business decisions on gut feel. Instead, you will have sound, informed financial advice at your fingertips.
You will no longer have to worry about what the numbers mean in all those financial reports and tax returns. You will have them explained clearly so you understand what they all mean and why they are important.
You will no longer feel like your efforts are not being rewarded financially. You will have the required expertise alongside you to convert your effort into dollars.
Tony has 33 years’ experience as an accountant, and 13 years’ experience as a CPA. His first 18 years’ experience involved financial, management and operational accounting roles at a senior management level, in the security, transport, and forensic accounting industries