I had a conversation with a client before the holidays about what he should be doing as the president of his company. I asked him how he wanted to spend his time at work every day. He said he wanted to be out running his crews and working in the field, but that he didn't think that was what he should be doing as the president.
I told him that as the president and owner, he could do whatever he wanted. It's his company. But the things he should be doing are those that he does best and where he can add the most value. For most people, what they do best coincides with what they most enjoy doing. It’s human nature – people tend to like to do what they're good at. For my client, the thing he enjoyed doing the most was working with and supervising his crew.
I shared with him the best piece of advice I’ve ever received as a business owner – you can’t do everything yourself. Or as Clint Eastwood said, “a man has got to know his limitations.”
Most business owners are either great technicians or great salespeople, but not both. Some are great managers and team builders. A small number are great visionaries with world-changing ideas.
An even smaller number of business owners are good at accounting. The skill set it takes to grow a business – the ability to build a team, negotiate deals or manage logistics, for example – is just not the same as those it takes to be a great accountant.
This is why many growing businesses have accounting departments and financial statements that could be best described as a dumpster fire. The owner doesn't understand it and the person left in charge of it is often overwhelmed. This is why it makes good business sense to bring in someone who does accounting for a living.
Outsourcing accounting responsibilities also offers the added benefit of freeing the owner’s mind to focus on ways to generate sales and grow the business. I tell all of my clients to not worry about the minute details of cash management and accounting because that's what they pay my team to do.
It's a downward spiral for business owners who have cash flow struggles to focus on the cash issue only. Doing so saps energy they could be using to go out and generate more revenue, which is the only way they will be able to get out of the trouble they are in. That’s another reason why outsourcing accounting makes sense, and if you surveyed our clients they would say that taking that burden off of their shoulders is the most valuable thing we do for them.
Robert J. Rickert CPA, PC focuses on giving its clients timely, accurate and relevant financial information to help them make informed decisions about their businesses. The firm provides customized solutions to meet the specific needs of its clients. Services offered by the firm include CFO and controller services, crisis management, interim financial management, acquisitions and business buying, divestitures and business selling, litigation support, business tax services, and tax dispute assistance for individuals. For more information, visit rickertcpa.com, call 910-319-9127 or email [email protected].
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