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Here are 16 ways to set yourself up for success in your new business!

Are you thinking of owning your own business?

Opening your own business is exciting and thrilling. Everything that comes after the excitement and thrill have worn off dictates whether a small business will make it. Although it's up to you to maintain and stretch out the "thrill and excitement" period forever, a methodical action plan is needed to fulfill your dream or goal of being your boss and running a successful business.

Success lies in the approach you choose to take and in avoiding some of the common pitfalls of a new business. Here are 16 things to include in your new business action plan!

1. An initial business plan to clarify your marketing, management, and financial goals.

2. Determine your start-up capital needs.

3. Identify sources of start-up capital and backup sources if needed.

4. Evaluate and quantify your borrowing power so you know how much money you can get your hands on if needed.

5. Select a business structure that best fits your needs by evaluating tax advantages, legal exposure, ease of operation, and portability should you relocate.

6. Select the right accounting software by evaluating your budget, needs, and hardware.

7. Prepare a Cash Flow Budget to know precisely how much money you need to keep the business alive each month for the first few years. Unplanned cash requirements are always emotionally painful.

8. Establish billing and collection procedures to maximize your cash flow.

9. Establish procedures to monitor and control costs.

10. Set up a home office to maximize your tax deductions.

11. Prepare and file all required state and local licenses and permits.

12. Prepare and file your application for your Federal Employer Identification Number.

13. Provide payroll and payroll tax filing when you bring on your first employee.

14. Comply with employment laws, so you don't get hit with fines and unhappy employees.

15. Identify your business insurance needs.

16. Develop a solid Business Agreement. This document is essential for all new businesses and will help prevent tremendous financial and emotional problems.

Although this list is not exhaustive, it is a great place to begin. It is also always advisable to work with an accountant or other small business specialist to ensure you get off to a great start! If you have questions, we are here to answer them! Call us at 806-676-2849 or come by the office today!

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Due to our constant media intake, from movies to news to social media, we are inundated daily with highly visible, highly successful people. Are these people more intelligent, talented, or better than we are? Or was their success due to mystical knowledge or plain old luck? Although none of those things hurt, it turns out the most significant indicator of success is something far less exciting. It turns out that it’s all about how consistent we are.

Have you seen the quote: "Hard Work Beats Talent When Talent Doesn't Work Hard.” This short piece of wisdom by Tim Notke speaks to our topic. Broken down into its most essential parts, consistency is the convergence of time and action. Achieving consistency relies on creating and maintaining a schedule for a particular activity or behavior, be it working out, making sales calls, learning a language, or even our bedtime, and then abiding by that schedule.

If you think back on most things you have accomplished in your life, did you see success in one day, or was it after many days, months, and sometimes years? Likely the latter. And why is that? In the interview, "Why Consistency Matters in Relationships and Leadership,” Simon Sinek points out that when you try to determine the one thing that pushed you over the edge to success, it can often be impossible to pinpoint. Instead, the daily practice, the monotonous, boring stuff accumulates and combines to create success.

If you make one call, you might get a sale, but your odds increase dramatically if you make 100 calls. If you lift weights one day, you will see no change in your physiology. You will see a difference if you lift weights every week for six months. It comes down to doing the same thing repeatedly.

How do you know if that same thing is the right thing? Consistency is also about measurement. Eric Holtzclaw of Inc., Magazine says that when he begins a new initiative or process, he gives it at least six months before deciding if it is a success or failure.

Measurement gives us a buffer between outcomes and expectations. Often, we begin a new program or process and expect to see results after our first or second effort. When we do not, we give it up, believing there must be a flaw in the plan or in the execution of it, when in fact, we did not give it enough time to work.

Rebecca Patterson of Forbes Magazine sums it up nicely, “It’s an absolute fact that if you can learn to do something consistently, you will discover much greater strengths and opportunities within yourself than you could ever imagine.”

Small, targeted behaviors, measurement, and patience are essential when building consistency in your work or business life. What are your best examples of how consistency has worked for you, or where can you begin to build consistency to create the success you are looking for?

Simon Sinek - Why Consistency Matters in Relationships and Leadership:

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3 Steps to Be Successful with Your Accountant

Wouldn’t it be nice if you had a successful relationship guide? Here you go! Here are three ways to be more successful with your accountant, get your money’s worth, and meet your accounting needs!

Be on the same wavelength.

Do you know what your goals are? Is it to buy a house in the next year, retire in 5 or pay down your tax debt? What are you trying to accomplish? Or are you just getting your taxes prepared?

Accountants can help with all that and more, but they need to be clear about what you are trying to do. Come with goals, and they can get them sorted out!

Tell them...everything.

Sometimes people are unsure what documents they should bring and what information they should share. Bring everything you might think is essential or related and tell your accountant about everything to do with the money situation that brought you to their office.

Know the limitations of the relationship.

Communicating your goals and sharing vital information is critical to having a successful relationship with your accountant; however, so is understanding the limitations of the relationship.

An accountant’s job is not to make sure you don’t pay taxes. Instead, it is their job to help you pay the least amount of tax required. Healthy, profitable businesses will pay some taxes.

Accountants help guide you and provide up-to-date information about financial and tax laws. They know their job well and are ready to help you; help yourself!

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