5 Ways To Count Your Money

Imagine going into your bank - the bricks and mortar or online version - and asking for your current balance

‘At the end of the 1st quarter your balance was $5,238.93. We expect to close the current quarter within the next couple of weeks. Though one of our bookkeepers is on holiday so it might be a bit longer. By Labor Day we’ll have a pretty good idea what your balance was on June 30th.

If this sounds in any way familiar, you need to change how your business is tracking its financial performance.

Here are five things every business needs regardless of its size. It takes between 3 hours and 2 days to put this package together the first time, depending on the size of your company and the skill of your financial staff. Thereafter, it takes a few minutes a week. It's due on the 10th of every month.

1. A revenue and cost projection for the current fiscal year. Updated to the end of the previous month with a comparison of forecast versus actual numbers.

2. A profit and loss statement accurate to the end of the previous month.

3. A list of receivables more than 90 days old. Doing business with people who aren’t paying should generate a conversation, at least internally.

4. A list of your 5 largest creditors and the amounts you owe. In this economy, loyalty and quantity is a platform for better terms.

5. A cash flow projection for the next 90 days. Knowing where you're planning to spend money, makes sure that's where you should spend it.

Managing a business is about getting ahead of the curve. And seeing it coming.

Otherwise, you’re just Wile E. Coyote.