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Certainly, time is money. This is what every successful business owner and professional knows and practices to make the most of their time. For start-up entrepreneurs, “Time Management” is the way you choose to use your time to maximize your productivity in achieving your certain business start-up goals.

In fact, just as bookkeeping is mandatory in making and maintaining financial records, effective time management is also crucial for entrepreneurs to achieve their business goals as they are ultimately responsible for each and every aspect of their company. They have to allocate the right amount of time to the right business tasks to keep their organization running smoothly. Here are fifteen great time management tips for start-up entrepreneurs.

1. Set Goals the Right Way

Begin with verifying your start-up goals and set them the right way. Setting your goals in the right way will help you stay focused on them and eliminate hindrances as much as possible. On the contrary, goal setting in the wrong way will lack the proper targets, eventually forcing you to fall off the track. Make the most of the SMART goal setting method. SMART is an acronym for S-Specific, M-Measurable, A-Attainable, R-Relevant, T-Time Bound. Make sure your goals are powerful and meaningful enough to push you to achieve them.

2. Prioritize and Delegate

Prioritizing your personal and professional goals as well as delegating your routine activities to a reliable and capable person are among the most important of all time management tips. This also ensures reduced stress and great productivity.  

3. Find a Great Time Management System

Depending on your choice, organizational culture, and start-up goals, find a good time management system that you can actually accomplish most effectively. Many entrepreneurial enthusiasts find that Covey’s quadrant time-management system is one of the most suitable and effective ones.  This identifies your goals into urgent, non-urgent, important, and not important categories.  

4. Audit your Time for a Week Straight

Spend an entire week consistently straight, to assess how you use your time that you have right now. Monitor your own activities, record them in a journal or on your cellphone app, split up the activities’ duration into blocks of one or half an hour, and analyze how you worked, used your time and wasted some of the time. At the end of your seventh day, tally up all the numbers. Thereby, you will know areas for improvement.

5. Work on MITs in the Morning

Always focus on your start-up goals and begin your day by working on your most important tasks (MITs) of the day. Achieving them will render you the biggest motivation and momentum to stick with your work.

6. Follow the 80-20 Rule

The 80-20 rule is another one of the most important time management tips that states that 80% of your efforts come from 20% of your results. When working on your sales start-up goals, it means that 80% of your sales come from 20% of your clients. Consequently, identifying that 20 % of your efforts will generate 80% of the results. With meticulous tracking and analysis, you can scale that out to work smartly.

7. Adopt Good Habits

All good habits, such as self-discipline, self-initiative, efficiency, accuracy, teamwork, and office etiquette serve as great time management tips to manifest your start-up goals. Thus, practice them and constantly improve on your areas of weakness.

8. Eliminate Bad Habits

Our bad habits are our biggest time-wasters. They can include procrastination, lying, negativity, tardiness, poor communication, social media addiction, bad body language, inattentiveness, inefficiency and temper tantrums. Thus, try eliminating them as much as you can.

9. Take Frequent Breaks

Breaks are essential to relax your body and recharge your mind. Keeping your physical, mental and emotional state at peak levels by taking at least 10 minutes of a break in an hour is one of the most essential time management tips. 

10.  Exercise and Meditate

Daily meditation and physical exercise are a great way to maintain physical and mental balance that render efficient performance. Thus, practice them in the morning or evening at your convenience.

11.  Make To-Do Lists

Making a to-do list every evening for the next day is a good way to stay effective and efficient throughout the day. In addition, it helps you stay consistent and closer to your start-up goal realization.

12. Seek Mentorship for Guidance

Find a mentor who has great expertise in time management tips, has been through the similar wringer you are in and can help you fulfill your start-up goals. Good mentorship helps you stay on track with your time and goals.

13.   Cut Down on Distractions

Clutter and disorder in your personal office or workplace will distract you, making you lose your time by focusing on unproductive activities. Thus, reduce such distractions by making things neat, clear and organized.  In addition, avoid checking your social media accounts during the work day.  That can wait.

14. Turn Off Unimportant Alerts

Promotional emails, subscription updates and app alerts simply distract you. Therefore, turn off social media app alerts and hire an assistant, if you can, to manage your emails and other less important tasks.  They can also update you about important emails that come through while you are working.

15.  Trust Yourself

By the day’s end, time management tips are not things that will be mastered overnight. You have to persevere. In addition, be confident about yourself. With consistent practice and patience, you will learn how to manage your time effectively and achieve your start-up goals.

Check out America's Best Bookkeepers
About Complete Controller® – America’s Bookkeeping Experts Complete Controller is the Nation’s Leader in virtual accounting, providing services to businesses and households alike. Utilizing Complete Controller’s technology, clients gain access to a cloud-hosted desktop where their entire team and tax accountant may access the QuickBooks file and critical financial documents in an efficient and secure environment. Complete Controller’s team of  US based accounting professionals are certified QuickBooksTMProAdvisor’s providing bookkeeping and controller services including training, full or partial-service bookkeeping, cash-flow management, budgeting and forecasting, vendor and receivables management, process and controls advisement, and customized reporting. Offering flat rate pricing, Complete Controller is the most cost effective expert accounting solution for business, family office, trusts, and households of any size or complexity.

 

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Start-ups have been the hyped-up success story of the former decade, with a few new companies not just hitting it big, but changing the face of business development. But for every successful start-up, countless others fail, sometimes mysteriously and often unobserved. No one goes into business expecting to fail, yet a good number of new start-ups do. In an effort to understand what causes failures, listed below are the top five reasons for why start-ups tend to fail.

1.  Market Problems

A major reason why new businesses fail is that they run into the problem of there being little or no market for the product that they have built. Here are some common indications:

1.  There is not a convincing enough value proposition to cause the buyer to actually commit to procuring. Good sales reps will tell you that to get an order in today’s tough circumstances, you have to find buyers that have their “hair on fire” or are “in thrilling pain”.  

2.  The market timing is not right. You could be ahead of your market by a few years and the public may not be ready for your specific resolution at this step.

3.  Luckily you may have had the funding to last through the early stages, but the market size of people that need your services and have funds to come to you is simply not large enough.


2.  Business Model Failure

One of the most common causes of failure in the start-up world is that entrepreneurs are too optimistic about how easy it will be to acquire customers. They assume that, because they will build an interesting web site, product, or service, that clienteles will beat a path to their door. That may happen with the first few customers but, after that, it quickly becomes an expensive task to attract and win customers if you do not have a proper business model in place.

The Capital Efficiency “Rule”

 If you would like to have a capital efficient business, it is believed to be important to recover the cost of acquiring your customers in less than 12 months. Wireless carriers and banks break this rule, but they have the luxury of access to cheap capital.


3.  Poor Management Team

An incredibly common problem that causes start-ups to fail is a weak management team. A good management team will be smart enough to avoid Reasons 2, 4, and 5 in the business.  Weak administration teams make errors in multiple regions:

1.    They are frequently weak on strategy, building a product that no one wants to buy as they failed to do enough work to validate the ideas before and during development.

2.    They are usually poor at execution which leads to issues with the product not getting built correctly or on time. The go-to-market execution will be poorly instigated.

4.  Running out of Cash

A fourth major reason that start-ups fail is that they run out of cash. A key job of the CEO is to understand how much cash is left and whether that will carry the company to a milestone that can lead to successful financing or to cash flow positive.

5.  Product Problems

Another reason that new businesses fail is that they miss the mark in developing a product that meets the market’s need. This can either be due to simple execution or it can be a far more strategic problem, which is a failure to achieve Product/Market fit. Most of the time, the first product that a start-up brings to market won’t meet the market need. In the best cases, it will take a few revisions to get the product/market fit right. In the worst cases, the product will be way off base and a complete re-think is obligatory.

Conclusion

Some start-ups prosper, yet so many fail. And, it is failure that teaches us the best lessons. There are many other reasons start-ups fail, but these five came up as most common when inquiring the founders and team members involved in the start-up ecosystem. Should your start-up fail, it’s worth spending some time to understand what went wrong and learn from your mistakes to make it the next time.

Check out America's Best Bookkeepers
About Complete Controller® – America’s Bookkeeping Experts Complete Controller is the Nation’s Leader in virtual accounting, providing services to businesses and households alike. Utilizing Complete Controller’s technology, clients gain access to a cloud-hosted desktop where their entire team and tax accountant may access the QuickBooks file and critical financial documents in an efficient and secure environment. Complete Controller’s team of  US based accounting professionals are certified QuickBooksTMProAdvisor’s providing bookkeeping and controller services including training, full or partial-service bookkeeping, cash-flow management, budgeting and forecasting, vendor and receivables management, process and controls advisement, and customized reporting. Offering flat rate pricing, Complete Controller is the most cost effective expert accounting solution for business, family office, trusts, and households of any size or complexity.

 

Interior Of Busy Design Office With Staff
Starting a business is often exciting – yet scary at the same time! It is a bit like moving through immense fog where you can only see a few feet in front of the windshield. Hence, you have no knowledge of what is awaiting you until it is actually upon you. However, the more experienced you are when it comes to entrepreneurship, the better you are able to navigate through that fog. From bookkeeping to business management, your knowledge and expertise will enable you to make the right decisions. Here are 9 critical factors or vital decisions at start-up which can go a long way.

1. A good sense of timing

You need to understand this in two ways:

1.  Picking the best moment to begin your startup: The ideal moment to start your company is typically a balancing act which is determined by several great factors including: the availability of necessary startup funds, the success or failure of competitors, the ebb and flow of your industry, and your personal and family circumstances. For instance, you may delay the plan as you are expecting a baby in the next few couple months.

2.  Immediate action to grab the opportunity:
Since entrepreneurship is all about taking calculated risks, you must leverage an opportunity as soon as it appears. You can achieve this by completing your business plan and making decisive moves to get your company off the ground promptly. But, always avoid a rush attitude. In fact, you must show diligence in the plan development. However, many startups fail simply because they are too sluggish and wallow to complete any task timely.


2. Avoid giving heed to statistics

Many people use statistics like ‘95 percent of businesses fail’ simply as an excuse to make themselves comfortable about giving up. Even if that number is correct, it is because most of them do not commit to their goals, follow through to the end, or have money management skills.

3. Do something you love

Do not begin something you will not want to do in the next five years. Making your passion your business means you will still be enjoying and earning in the next five years. It could be anything like painting, singing, engineering, teaching, marketing, auditing or bookkeeping. 

4. Assess if you have to raise funds to launch your start-up

It is often rare if an entrepreneur has enough savings and funds in his bank account to seamlessly begin their business. On the other hand, most startup enthusiasts have to raise finances to turn their idea into a reality. Therefore, you might need to use bank loans, leverage assistance from family and friends, or put properties on mortgage to arrange money to invest in your startup. Hence, assess your business goals to know how much you need to begin.

5. Know your team members before brining them on board

The people behind your business are the most critical factor, particularly for startups. As recordkeeping is essential for bookkeeping and as products or services have to be iterated many times until they find their market place; similarly, it is all about having the right people doing the right job. Their direction is more important than the pace of their performance. Here you should focus on their background story, such as precious experience, companies and qualification, and what nature of value they bring to the table.

6. Invest wisely

Warren Buffet says, “Instead of putting all your eggs in the same basket, make multiple investments.” Following this inspiration, you should also diversify your investments that help increase your chances of success and reduce the risk involved. Since these investments are for the long run, always show patience.

7. Avoid over , or under, investment

Starting a business can significantly affect you and your family financially. You must learn where and when to spend what amount. You should neither waste your precious dollars nor fail or delay to invest adequately where necessary, simultaneously. In fact, you often need to spend funds to earn money in any business.  Hence, never skimp out or underestimate things your company needs.

8. Set up your cash flow tracking

Since you will be required to submit a self-employed tax return, you will need to have a good track record of all business transactions. Though opening up a separate business account is not necessary when you are setting up as a sole-trader, it could be helpful to keep track. There are several online tools that not only help small businesses to manage bookkeeping and maintain other accounts, but also enable large organizations to prepare audit reports and complex financial reports. 

9. Start selling

You must know how to promote your product or service and who to target. Though you have already mentioned it in your business plan, it is time to put the matter into execution. In fact, much of your early budget will be on advertisement and marketing, whether that is SEO, networking, telemarketing or targeting retailers. Your first few sales will boost your confidence to show more commitment and dedication towards the business goals.

Check out America's Best Bookkeepers
About Complete Controller® – America’s Bookkeeping Experts Complete Controller is the Nation’s Leader in virtual accounting, providing services to businesses and households alike. Utilizing Complete Controller’s technology, clients gain access to a cloud-hosted desktop where their entire team and tax accountant may access the QuickBooks file and critical financial documents in an efficient and secure environment. Complete Controller’s team of  US based accounting professionals are certified QuickBooksTMProAdvisor’s providing bookkeeping and controller services including training, full or partial-service bookkeeping, cash-flow management, budgeting and forecasting, vendor and receivables management, process and controls advisement, and customized reporting. Offering flat rate pricing, Complete Controller is the most cost effective expert accounting solution for business, family office, trusts, and households of any size or complexity.