Small business is beautiful, but only if it provides full life benefits for its owner. I don’t know who else uses the full life benefits term or if it is something that I coined while working with my small business clients, but let me share my own definition of that term:
Full life benefits include:
- A growing livable income for your family
- Ability to establish an emergency reserve
- Ability to fund a retirement account
- Ability to work reasonable hours
- Ability to take time off
This is accomplished by:
- Having a good accounting system including budgets
- Having and using a strategic focus business plan on a daily basis
- Having and using a marketing plan on a daily basis
- Having systemized your internal and external processes
- Trusting someone (other than yourself or a family member) to hold you accountable and to share and help you develop and implement your ideas and dreams.
Owning a small business and averaging less than $50,000 in gross receipts a year and at the same time facing great survival odds (less than 50% of all businesses survive) is not running a beautiful small business. Two key words, trust and self-discipline, are a requirement to turn your business into a full life benefit business, trusting in someone to walk your business life with you, and the self-discipline to do the difficult things necessary for sustained growth. One very important thing to remember is that increased profitability does not come by increasing your overhead or by adding staff or space.
We are each endowed by our Creator to be whatever we set our minds and hearts to become, provided we include the appropriate action.
I believe that 2016 will see a lot of twists and turns in our economy. Now is the time to prepare yourself for the opportunities as well as the pitfalls.
Nick J. Petra CFP