Every year when the clock strikes midnight and January 1st hits, most of us commit to New Year’s resolutions – believing in our ability to turn a new leaf and hit the reset button. While many make promises to hit the gym more, quit smoking or spend more time with family, there is one commitment most ignore: the financial health of their business.
1. “Identify 5 or 6 key drivers that affect your business. Create monthly reporting on those drivers and meet with key management on a monthly basis to discuss those drivers and how to improve them.”
2. “For those in real estate, 2013 should be the year of diversification. Focus on diversifying your holdings, partners, capital and debt sources and other areas you feel are important to the fundamentals of your organization. Protect what you’ve worked hard to build to ensure future growth.”
3. “Prepare a realistic budget and regularly monitor against it. Update it as circumstances change, but always keep your eye on the overall financial plan.”
4. “Be proactive rather than reactive. Planning and communication should be a key component in 2013.”
5. “For 2013, promise to review your entire financial and estate plan so that by the end of this year you can find comfort in having addressed those areas that are keeping you up at night.”
6. “In the current economic climate, I suggest taking steps to reduce your personal debt. You will always be better off with less debt, especially during trying times. Another reason to do so involves new tax laws taking effect which are reducing the amount of tax deductions you can take in certain areas, such as, mortgage interest.”
7. “For not-for-profit organizations, fundraising will continue to be challenging in 2013 as many donors are being solicited by a growing number of organizations in need of funding. A good resolution would be to increase communications and market success stories to your existing donor base and other prospective donors. By doing so, you’ll help existing and prospective donors see why your cause is important and meaningful – resulting in a more loyal donor base.”
8. “Organize your records. With the need for more transparency and back-up documentation during the normal course of business, take time at the beginning of this New Year to tighten up your record keeping – it will help you and others who assist with your finances stay efficient.”
Whether it’s understanding your key business drivers, taking a fresh new look at your budget or even getting educated on what to look at when doing an annual review of your estate plan, we are here to help make your New Year’s resolution a personal and financial success. All of us at GellerRagans wish you a healthy and happy New Year!