Many small business owners show skill earning money. But still fall short when it comes to managing it. Sure, they may have built a successful company. But too many still live paycheck to paycheck.
On this week’s Small Business Radio Show, I talked with Avery Breyer. Breyer has written multiple best-selling books in the Smart Money Blueprint series about breaking this never ending stressful financial cycle. She says what initially prevents people from fixing their financial problems is fear. They are scared to look at the actual information to find out what is really going on. However, as Avery explains, knowledge is power and it will end the confusion surrounding your finances. It can provide the much-needed clarity on what to do next and help set the financial goals that can end this cycle. Avery believes that once owners get past this fear, they will see that there are many options to end this pattern.
With actual financial information, Avery explains that the next step is determining if you have an income or a spending problem. When most people look at what they are spending on a monthly basis, they are shocked; Avery calls this a form of self-sabotage as they get used to living over their financial means.
Once they understand their issues, small business owners need to think about their specific financial goals. Avery suggests asking “how much money do you need next month or when you retire?” “What do you want to change to facilitate that goal?”
Avery explains that a key part of the plan must be a monthly budget. She believes that this can be empowering, not limiting. She recommends picking a start date. Save your personal income stubs and your expense receipts and put them in an electronic folder or a physical basket. Every week, enter them into a notebook or Excel spreadsheet. At the end of the month, compare the two columns of income and expense to see which is greater.
If expenses exceed income, Avery recommends cutting out optional purchases or figuring out how your company can pay you more money every month. She stresses that these solutions do not happen overnight since this problem did start yesterday. Instead, give yourself time to make changes and celebrate each small positive step as it happens.