How often should I look at my financial information?

Hi there. Welcome to Better Business Insights. My name's Liz Jarvis and today we're going to be talking about how often should I look at my financial information? Now as a business owner, it's a big question because sometimes we're scared of it. Sometimes we think we don't understand it, anyway. And it's somebody else's job, we’ve abdicated that to the Bookkeeper, the Accountant, whatever.
But I'm here to encourage you to take a bigger interest in what's happening, because I believe that accounting is kind of broken. We've all been doing it ourselves for a while and we haven't been getting the input that we need from other professionals. But I think it's really important that business owners re-imagine how they engage with their numbers.
So how often should you look at your financial statements? Well, I would encourage you to do it as often as you can. You might at least want to do it monthly. In the old days, accounting systems didn't have as much computer space as they have now. You had to print everything off every month and that encouraged the business owner to look at it all and to get a good feel for what was going on.
And then those printouts were stored away. They might have had your scribble on them from last month about what didn't seem right. What customers hadn't paid you and why they weren't paying you yet, some notes to follow things up.
Now that we've got everything inside the black box, behind the screen, we can drill into whatever we like, but we're not sure what we're doing. Unfortunately, business owners have stepped back. And they look at those things less and less because they're kind of under control. Somebody else is doing it. You know, they must be right. I go to the Accountant, he didn't say anything, I guess it's okay. It's not good enough. You can do so much better in your business, if you do look at those financials regularly. One of the things we do is help you to understand what they mean. As the story of your business, it's not actually that frightening. It's actually very empowering.
So how often should you look at your financial statements? At least once a quarter with the BAS, if that's how often you're doing your BAS. Preferably once a month, but if you're a really small business, you might be wanting to do your own work at least once a week.
When you stay on top of things then you can interpret data that's coming together about your business and you can make better decisions.
I heard a great story from someone that now runs a bookkeeping business that back in the seventies as a, school kid, he was so good at numbers that he used to do his grandpa's books and he could get them done really fast.
But the value in the grandson doing that work fast, wasn't just about paying less for that work to get done, it was about the advantage that his grandfather had. The next day, each month after the bank statements arrived, those figures were ready and that meant Grandpa in his manufacturing business, could make decisions quickly.
He could get to the suppliers of meat products and so on, ahead of his competitors. He knew what he needed straight away. There are so many insights in your figures. I really encourage you to look at them more often. And if you want help with that, reach out to us, we'd be more than happy to help you. No judgment. Just curiosity.
See you next time.

Your financial information tells the story of your business! When you apply your curious mind to it regularly you can really improve your business. This video gives some insight as to why engaging with your numbers regularly will get you ahead in the game, improve your decisions and ultimately lead to a more profitable business.

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