James Laforte is the founder and of JLL Consulting a n international healthcare consulting firm with offices in the US and Europe. James is focused on identifying new value add acquisitions in healthcare, real estate and equity positions in distressed companies, with over three decades of experience overseeing acquisitions and consulting for his clients and government entities. With over 25 years experience James laforte was recognized for his leadership skills, helping CEO’s reach better profitability and modernization throughout the US and the Europe, James is passionate about facility modernization , government compliance, implementing new technology and system today’s modern workforce.
Mr. Laforte Co-Chairs the Association For Betterment of The Elderly GHT. James has a proven track record of making the impossible possible and has has been recognized as a gold achiever at 45 under 45 healthcare leadership awards entrepreneurs in Europe. Follow him on twitter at https://twitter.com/JamesLaforte
It’s always a tough economy for small business owners! The key to staying afloat and ahed of the competition is financial know-how otherwise known as cash flow. Yes, every entrepreneur must have a good grip or understanding on financial management to keep the business on full throttle and ready for the next level.
Financial Planning – Leading By Foresight
Knowing the basics of financial planning is the key to gaining the upper hand in your business. It’s not enough to have the title of a CEO, you have to put a face on the brand. A leader in the hierarchy of things. You need to be on top of the food chain to lead, coach, inspire, motivate, engage, and move people into action.
A business does not become successful overnight but there is more to it than just good leadership, a motivated workforce, and a robust strategy – you also have to be financially literate. Knowing the numbers and economics is important in developing an effective business strategy. You cannot shoot blanks. You have to be precise and clear with your business or financial goals – that is the key to nailing it!
You cannot just treat your business as a guesswork. You got to have a solid financial plan. Some people neglect this part of business planning and management but financial planning is important to allocating funds and ensuring that you have a steady cash flow to keep the business going.
Steps To Developing A Financial Plan For Your Business
Businesses that don’t plan are doomed to fail. In order to develop a solid financial plan, you should be able to think ahead or make assumptions of your cash flow. Here are actionable steps to take in developing a financial plan for your business:
- Projecting cash flow. You should understand that while there are predictable factors in running a business, there are factors that can be erratic or rather unstable – you have to work on this variables more than the latter. You cannot be complacent even if you are gaining profit in your business because there are certain periods wherein cash flow may fall short. This happens even to the biggest ballers, so don’t worry. For instance, you might have orders coming in this month, yet you would still be waiting for payments the next month. You should be realistic with projecting cash flow in a 12-month time frame.
- Make a financial forecast. Using your balance sheet, look into your assets, liabilities, and equity forecast for the next 12 months. This will help you get a realistic overview of your finances or whether your business is doing well or would need a financial overhaul at some points. Check into your break-even point.
- Prepare a contingency plan. As mentioned, even the biggest brands can crumble at some point, so you would need a contingency plan to serve as your buffer for your business plans. Look into your assets and inventory to see which ones should be liquidated so everything would be fluid. Look into your loan options as well if in case you would need some financial assistance.
- Monitor progress. Check whether your financial plans are going as projected or if needs are met. This will help you determine whether you’re right on target or would need some adjustment of financial strategies.
As an entrepreneur, you have vested time, money, and effort to watch your business venture soar and become successful from day one. Developing a financial plan is part of a healthy business practice to ensure that you are well-equipped to reach your goals and milestones. This becomes the blueprint or framework of your brand’s success. Having a financial plan allows you to become more confident in your decisions, because you have all points covered and contingencies in place.