I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the idea of financial freedom and what it takes to create a business that can give us that.
And I know that for the vast majority of small businesses, financial freedom is a pipe dream for many reasons.
And this IS the reason I get up every day, to try and change that reality for as many people as possible, because I know that it CAN be easier.
If only people knew what to do.
It’s not quite a blueprint but there are simple predictable things you can do that will increase your chances of reaching that day of freedom!
Like building physical fitness
You may know that I had a serious lower disc injury 4 years ago, one that took me over 3 years to recover from. During that time I was very restricted in terms of what I could do exercise-wise. So from being something of a gym bunny, it was hugely frustrating to be on a low intensity rehab program all that time and it massively affected my energy and mood.
And in my frustration to get back to the fitness I had, I’ve been reflecting on how similar the two things are. Creating long lasting physical strength and fitness, and long term financial freedom both require long term consistency – doing the right things on a frequent basis.
It’s not a complicated process, just one that needs constant work.
And like there’s absolutely no shortcut to getting your strength and fitness back, you just have to put the time in doing the right things, exactly the same applies to your finances.
The turning point – knowing what the “right things” even are
For the first 3 years of my back injury I trotted off to physio at least twice a week. This stopped me seizing up, but wasn’t getting me any better. Then I saw a back consultant who gave me the magic beans – he told me to get a certain book and to do what it said.
That was it, my back started recovering immediately and as long as I still do those exercises every day, I’m getting stronger every week and am finally back to some decent weight training.
Liken this to a business who has habitual financial problems – cash flow is often tight, the level of profit isn’t what it should be, the owners aren’t earning enough and the value of the business isn’t growing. Something about the business model just isn’t working.
You can keep taking short term survival advice, put your head in the sand, OR you can find out what it takes to break the circle and start moving towards a secure financial future.
And taking the next step – WHO knows what I need to know?
After a year back training in the gym on my own, I realised that nothing was really getting any better, nothing was changing. And it was REALLY annoying! I was working hard, putting in the hours, but I just couldn’t see any difference.
I needed the next step of expert help. I needed to find someone who knew how to help me rebuild my strength, whilst continuing the rehab work and not damaging my back again. So I found a personal trainer who I see twice a week who knows exactly what to do, and after 8 weeks I’m already feeling less depressed when I look in the mirror!
So what are the right financial things?
- Firstly you have to know where you are right now – and that means really good financial information
2. Then you need to know where you want to go – what are you trying to achieve? And I don’t mean a random mad turnover figure, but a well thought-out financial strategy to give you the retained profits and future you want
3. You need solid and regular financial reporting – every week, every month. Not crappy reports from Sage or Xero, but information that is tailored to tell you exactly what you need to know, so you know if you’re on track or not
4. CONSISTENCY – there are no short cuts here (sorry). Your finances must be kept under scrutiny all the time IF you’re serious about creating something for the future. If I want long term fitness and strength then I have to train several times every week – I can’t just do it for a couple of months and think it’s all sorted.
5. And lastly, you can’t abdicate this stuff to anyone else, any more than I get someone to go to my PT sessions for me! By all means delegate where you need to, but you can’t abdicate from your own financial future and expect it to turn out well!
Yes, there are some technicalities involved but getting some expert help to make sure you have the right tools and the right plan will save you years of pain and frustration and greatly increase your chances of your getting the financial security and success you dream of.
And on the subject of expert help…
You know I don’t like the whole salesy thing, but sometimes I just do feel the need to spell out that this is stuff we might be able to help you with. Because helping business owners get what they deserve from their business IS my passion, it’s what I love doing the most! (And I’m pretty good at it!!)
So don’t be shy if your business isn’t giving you want you need. You deserve better. You deserve a business that IS going to give you the future you want