11 Sep 5 Bookkeeping Questions Every Business Owner Must Be Able To Answer
Been in business longer than 15 minutes? Good – that means you’ve asked yourself bookkeeping questions.
But how good are your answers? Better yet – how good are your questions?
The stakes are high when your livelihood is on the line. And good bookkeeping helps keep your finger on the pulse.
5 Bookkeeping Questions
How well can you answer these 5 questions to evaluate your business?
1. How profitable was my company last month?
By profitability, we don’t mean how much cash you have in your bank account. What was your true profit last month? If it wasn’t where you want it to be, what do you need to change? A consistent P&L each month and an expertly managed balance sheet are your best friends here.
Not sure how to understand your profit and loss statement? Take a look at our blog all about them!
2. Where do we have money “falling between the couch cushions”?
What costs are you identifying each month that could decrease or go away? Where are my financials telling me to shore up my processes? Who’s watching our expenses each month to minimize waste and ensure employees don’t spend unnecessarily?
All of these bookkeeping questions can help you pinpoint where you’re losing money.
Have someone watch for things each month like paying for an old service you thought you canceled or a surprise increase in a vendor’s fees you didn’t know about.
In addition to not spending unnecessarily, it’s time to look at where you can actively save money in your business. We share three quick money-saving tips for small business owners in this post.
3. What’s MY hourly rate as the owner?
Understanding your hourly rate as the owner is key to staying in your highest and best use (doing the things that only you can do), even in the midst of sometimes just having to get the job done.
Where do you lose money by doing things that someone else could do (bookkeeping, perhaps)? Click here to read about the true cost of doing your bookkeeping in-house.
Your ability to stick to tasks worthy of your role and value defines whether you own a business or own your job. As a business owner, you should value your time above $100/hr and delegate roles that aren’t worth that.
4. What facts am I using today to improve this month?
You know your business better than anyone, so your intuition is valuable. But are you trusting a one-point-in-time, subjective feeling, or cold, hard facts to make decisions?
A few percentage points can be the difference between profitability or going out of business. (Read about “sunk cost fallacy”) Use your monthly financial statements to see what levers you can pull to increase sales or improve margins. You might be surprised how far a few tweaks can go.
5. What does the future look like?
Are long-term trends saying keep doing what you’re doing or take drastic steps towards change?
For small business owners, an unshakeable resolve is often why they’re successful. Given the sobering statistics on how many small businesses fail – that resolve could cut both ways.
In addition to these five bookkeeping questions, you need to ask and answer, take a look at the five fundamentals of a successful business strategy here.
Wanna know the future? Have really good bookkeeping.
How effectively could you answer these bookkeeping questions? If not as effective as you’d like, what’s your biggest obstacle?
Take one step today towards greater financial clarity and peace of mind. You’ll surely reap dividends from it.
Get your bookkeeping questions answered
When you work with Two Roads, all of your bookkeeping questions will be answered and you’ll finally have the financial clarity you deserve. Our bookkeeping services include the setup and maintenance of QuickBooks Online (QBO), reconciliation of your bank & credit card account, financial reports, payroll, and much more.
We’re pleased to provide friendly, responsive, and proactive financial support at a fixed rate. Like just about everything at Two Roads, we’ve taken a unique approach to an age-old industry.
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This article was originally published on April 19, 2017, and has since been updated.