Owner/Founder: Staci Dennett
Website: Pennywise Budgets.com
Facebook | Twitter: @LifeOfStaci
Staci was our first guest on the new Small Businesses Better Show (watch at Ovaleye.tv), discussing small business budgets and how to plan on taking the plunge from quitting your day job and starting your own small business. Here are some highlights:
Q. We have many clients who, for many years, leverage a day job while starting their own business from a home office. What advice do you have to those who are planning on taking the plunge, quitting their day job and working for themselves?
Make sure you really are financially set. Many business owners struggle and fail because of being unprepared. I recommend six to 12 months of capital before getting started. Also be aware that clients aren’t going to just come to you, it takes time to build up the business you will need to pay all of the bills.
Q. In your experience, what is the number one budgeting struggle that the majority of businesses run into?
Most businesses do not have a plan. Don’t just have a partial plan, create an actual plan. Take some time to set a budget that will work for the first year or so. By not having a plan you will be wasting time and money in trying to figure things out as you go.
Q. What advice do you give to businesses to work through this common struggle?
Make a plan – and take the time to make a good plan. If you are not a planner then ask for help or find resources to create a solid plan. Things will pop-up a few months down the road and you’ll get stuck. Figuring this out in advance you will be prepared and handle it quickly and easily when something does come up.
Q. Where have you found that businesses are overspending on that could be better allocated?
Marketing was my downfall, which I also see a lot of. There are a lot of appealing opportunities that present themselves, such as trade shows, advertisements, coaching services, etc, that need to be budgeted for. Money can be wasted quickly by not having a set budget with specific expenses allocated.
Q. What small tasks, steps or tools do you advise business owners to implement on a daily or weekly basis which make their long term goals more obtainable?
Break down your goals into simple steps to follow. I recommend goal chart (download here), broken down to each day and month. By tracking your goals each day and week you can see where you are and be able to quickly make up any tasks you have not completed. If you wait any longer than this, the milestones will be tougher to make up.