The challenge that many female entrepreneurs face is managing funds; monthly bills, expenses, and then throw in the many unexpected costs of raising a family. But then add that to that your own entrepreneurial ventures – and it can really get complicated. You now have to add keeping a business afloat, and potentially even paying employees to your daily expenditures – all while trying to make a profit to go back to your family.
So, how can you shoulder such added responsibility? A detailed money management plan.
Here are a few tips to get you started:
Get rid of all toxic influences
Toxic influences are the kind of people who tell you that business is hard for women and that you should spend your time taking care of kids. There is no need to hang around people who constantly criticise your efforts of building a successful startup.
Set up a strong invoicing system
If you want to get paid – you need to have a secure billing and invoice system. Just accepting cheques or keeping a spreadsheet isn’t going to cut it. You don’t want to be wasting valuable productivity time chasing down payments and trying to track receipts. Find something automatic and secure like Xero and your life will get a whole lot easier, particularly when it comes to tax time and paperwork.
Have a separate bank account
Whatever type of small business you are running, you must have a separate bank account to your personal one. It can be a real pain if you run your business out of your personal account, you’ll need to keep a super close eye on everything and be a keep very good records. Contact your bank or multiple banks to get the best deal for your business circumstances.
Keep good records
When it comes to tax time, you’ll thank yourself a million times over for keeping good records of your income and expenses. Just thinking about it may seem overwhelming but, if you equip yourself with a good accounting program and utilise handy receipt managing apps that can take instant photographs of your receipts, you’re on your way to being a bookkeeping queen.
Manage your debtors
It’s a great feeling when you’ve delivered the work to your client and you can generate a nice shiny invoice. But do you have a process to make sure you receive that payment on time? This is an essential part of your business and managing your cash flow.
To ensure your clients are paying you on time and you aren’t spending your valuable time chasing payment, consider putting in place client contracts, late fees and even having the client paying up front.
Don’t learn the hard way. It may seem a little too much at first and you’ll want to trust everyone, but you’ll be glad you put these things in place.
When setting your rates, make sure you don’t undersell yourself. Yes, you may have received $35 an hour when you were employed but remember, you also received things like holiday pay, superannuation and sick leave as part of that wage or salary. Remember too, you didn’t have to pay for electricity, internet or things like computer software. Factor every business expense plus what profit you’d like to make, into your fee.
Consider a Line of Credit
If you’re a sole entrepreneur or even just a super small team – you may not have considered business financing options. But having a line of credit is not just for large corporations. There are actually quite a few different funding options to fit your specific needs as a female entrepreneur. If your business is expanding- that is a good thing! You should embrace that and not be afraid to find the capital you need.
Time is Money!
It may be a cliche – but it’s true. You need to focus your time on the activities that bring in the most earnings. For example, let’s say you discuss sales on Facebook groups and also send out emails to your subscriber list. But after doing this for a few months, you realize that the emails get a lot more responses and sales. This doesn’t mean you stop posting on Facebook altogether, it just means you focus more of your valuable time on what’s working.
Don’t stress about having a perfect money management plan overnight. The truth is, while it’s exciting to be a new entrepreneur, there’s also a lot of change and evolution in the beginning – and that’s okay. Putting strong systems in place, saving for a rainy day, and using your time wisely will set you up for success, no matter what that looks like.
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