I don’t know about you, but my Facebook newsfeed is FILLED with so-called experts slinging around big revenue numbers in their business to grab my attention, and get me to sign up for their stuff.

But, see … I’m an accountant.

And I know the truth: Revenue means nothing unless there is profit attached.

And there are two parts to that equation: top line … and bottom line. When your business starts NETTING, that’s when I’ll pay attention.

Otherwise, we’re talking hobbies here.

So, let’s help you net a little more this month, shall we?

Three Overlooked Ways To Control Costs In Your Chicago Business

“Never spend your money before you have it.” -Thomas Jefferson

Profitable revenue is the only thing that will grow your Chicago business.

Are there other elements that fuel that process? Absolutely. But you must control costs so that you can forecast and attain PROFIT for the good of your business.

Some people will see this as greedy or profiteering, but a lot of those people just don’t know what it takes to run a business. For the rest of us, it’s important to keep one another in check with various systems in place to control costs and maintain profitability.

Here are three ideas that often go overlooked — and if you have questions about any item, please reach out and let me know. I’m available to discuss ways to help you save (and therefore gain).

Annual Renegotiation

Depending on your business model, setting a yearly meeting with vendors to renegotiate terms and payment can be a great first step to controlling costs for your business.

Before setting meetings in stone, you should probably follow a guiding principle in business: whenever possible don’t set a contract any longer than a year. This might seem obvious, but many businesses think this longer-term strategy will help them lower costs. That is not the case.

When you set a contract limit at a year (max), you can then come back together after a year’s time working together to assess what’s working well and how you could shave off costs for financial gain in the near/distant future.

Have the Conversations

Ideally, conversation with your customers and your primary vendors is happening more frequently than on an annual basis. But, again, that year mark should be the max you go without truly sitting down with a customer — asking them important questions:

  • What’s working well in our contractual agreement?
  • Is there something you’d like to see change?
  • Are there unnecessary funds being spent on either end of the agreement?

Again, the key is communication. And you might find, at these (monthly, quarterly or annual) meetings that there is some serious cash you could be saving in the process. Don’t let silence be the enemy of revenue. It happens all the time in business, and I’d hate for it to happen to you.

Beware of Maximum Occupancy

This is a delicate one, because you’re dealing with real humans with real feelings and emotions. But, you also have a business to run.

Sometimes businesses get so focused on revenue, they mistake headcount for growth. (I.e. if our number of employees is growing, then we’re growing as a business.) That would be a fallacy at the expense of your business and employees.

Imagine this: replacing your bottom 10% of employees with employees who, in terms of caliber and performance, will match the top 10%. In other words, an alternative method for growth. Don’t just push past capacity because you assume More People –> More Productivity –> More Revenue. When in actuality…

Better People –> Better Productivity –> Better Revenue (and Controlled Costs)

Let’s do this. In the end, everyone will win if you start making moves today.

I’m grateful for our chance to serve you and your business — and we are dedicated to its success. Which means that we are looking at the “unsexy” numbers so that your business can sing.

Feel free to share this post with a business associate or client you know who could benefit from our assistance. While these particular articles usually relate to business strategy, as you know, we specialize in tax preparation and planning for families and business owners.

Warmly,

 

Ayton Taylor

(773) 995-2990

A.L. Taylor and Associates, PC