How To Maintain A Healthy Cash Flow
Omage of a desk with a clock on its back and pencil on a curriculum vitae with the text underneath saying: How can a neurodiverse individual effectively prepare for a jon interview/meetig

Managing cash flow is essential for any business, but it is especially important for smaller businesses. Without the safety net of extra resources to stay afloat in slower times, smaller businesses need to keep a close eye on their finances.

Why is cash flow so important?

Cash flow is the movement of money flowing both in and out of your business – in an ideal world, the flow of your income should exceed your expenses. The key to cash flow is the movement of money – problems usually arise when you have a steady flow of expenses going out, but your flow of revenue has run dry.

Cash flow is what keeps your business living and growing. Without it, your business is likely to take a nosedive.

Maintaining healthy cash flow ensures that you can reinvest back into your business and keep things moving. Keeping on top of your finances is never easy, even less so when you’re a smaller business. As someone who has been there, I have some advice!

Back to blogHow To Maintain Healthy Cash FlowPosted on 7th December 2021 at 14:06

Managing cash flow is essential for any business, but it is especially important for smaller businesses. Without the safety net of extra resources to stay afloat in slower times, smaller businesses need to keep a close eye on their finances.

Why is cash flow so important?

Cash flow is the movement of money flowing both in and out of your business – in an ideal world, the flow of your income should exceed your expenses. The key to cash flow is the movement of money – problems usually arise when you have a steady flow of expenses going out, but your flow of revenue has run dry.

Cash flow is what keeps your business living and growing. Without it, your business is likely to take a nosedive.

Maintaining healthy cash flow ensures that you can reinvest back into your business and keep things moving. Keeping on top of your finances is never easy, even less so when you’re a smaller business. As someone who has been there, I have some advice!

 

Send off your invoices in a timely manner and as soon as you are able – this way you won’t end up waiting longer for customers to pay you. Make sure you update your records with your incoming payments so that you can check them against your expenses!

It’s also a good idea to send invoices for recurring clients at roughly the same time each month – this way you’ll get into a routine and be less likely to put it off! Streamline the process by creating templates for invoices before you need them. You could also create a follow-up email process to use in the case of outstanding payments.

Sending invoices at regular intervals will also make it easier to see if there are payments that need to be chased. This will encourage a healthy (and hopefully steady) movement of cash through your business.

At least in the beginning, take steps wherever you can to minimize your expenses. Some subscription services offer hefty discounts if you purchase for a full year, while others will allow you to have bundle discounts on multiple services.

It’s always worth asking to see if you can get a discount for being a repeat customer – if you don’t ask, you’ll never know!

As important as it is to get new clients on board, it’s just as important (if not more so) to check in regularly with existing clients and ensure that they are happy. Perhaps discuss where you could help them further or see if there is anything else they need. Getting repeat business from clients is an effective way of making sure your business is sustainable in the long term.

Taking good care of your clients may also potentially lead to more business. If they have a good relationship with you, they may recommend you to others. Which brings us to…

If keeping existing clients happy is great for the sustainability of your business, then getting new clients is great for the growth of your business.

One of the best ways of maintaining healthy cash flow is by utilizing the clients you already have to gain new ones.

Ask your existing clients if you could have feedback or a testimonial for your website. These testimonials will hopefully make you look both appealing and trustworthy to potential clients. Most people will be happy to provide you with a few sentences about your work and it will prove invaluable in expanding your horizons to reach new people.

Be wary of offering large discounts – while this may attract customers in the short term, it may end up costing you more than it earns you.

You don’t have to offer the lowest price out there – you don’t even need to offer lower prices than your direct competitors! Just ensure that your product or service is quality, and don’t do yourself a disservice of offering rock-bottom pricing.

Carefully consider how you price your product or service. Price your product too high and you’ll turn off customers from the start. Price your product too low and not only will you impact your positive cash flow, but customers may assume your product is poor quality.

This will be your financial business partner who will help make sure that your company is on track – so choose wisely. A good accountant will also ensure that your self-assessments are sent off on time and keep you within your budget.

A good accountant will not only ensure that you are maintaining a positive flow of cash through your business but also save you the time and stress of rushing to finish your self-assessment before the deadline!

It’s a good idea to keep a good flow of communication between you and your accountant – set up regularly meetings to keep on track and dedicate time to troubleshoot any potential issues.

Maintaining a healthy cash flow is one of the most difficult parts of running a business, but with careful planning, you can avoid running into the red zone! Preparation is key – have solutions and back-up plans before you need them. Once you get into the habit of closely monitoring your finances, you’ll find it easier and easier to maintain a positive cash flow.

I always knew I wanted to be my own boss one day, but the right time never seemed to present itself.

On a camping weekend, I hurt my ankle badly and I simply couldn’t drive, the mega Corp I worked for as an Executive Assistant were surprisingly sympathetic and rather than just be off work sick, they arranged remote access to work from home, happy days, no commuting. Eureka!! I could do this on a permanent basis if I took “The Risk.”

I handed in my notice and started building my business, sourcing associate work to tide me over until I had my own clients.

One unremarkable day I had a query from a potential client who literally changed my life, she explained that she was Neurodivergent, (something that I’d had a little bit of experience with within my former corporate life) and could really do with a VA that could cope with her particular way of working. I finally realised it wasn’t just the commuting I struggled with, it was the whole corporate world that I didn’t want to engage with, my passion has always been to try and help/assist wherever I can.

Neurodivergent clients are simply the best, no one client is the same as the next and the feeling of accomplishment when I know I’ve actually made a positive difference can’t be beaten.

So if you’re a Neurodivergent business owner, take that “risk”, arrange a call with me, join my Facebook group or take out a membership and see how me and my marvellous team could give any assistance needed.

Taking a risk could mean leaving that job you’ve hated for years. Maybe you’re dreaming of starting your own business or thinking about going back to school because the degree you got the first time just wasn’t the right fit. Or perhaps, it’s about finally saying NO MORE to always trying to make everyone else happy.

To really grow—both personally and in business—you’ve got to step out of your comfort zone and try something new.

Do you have the courage to take a risk?

What’s holding you back?

Are you stuck in the “what ifs”?

Are you just surviving or feeling stuck in your comfort zone, struggling to break free?

If you’ve been thinking about making a change but fear of failure is stopping you, it’s time to ask yourself: What part of myself am I losing because I’m afraid to take a risk?

Only you know what needs to shift for you to move forward.

When I started my own business in 2018, I had those same doubts and fears. Leaving a secure, full-time job with no clients lined up was a huge risk. But looking back, I have no regrets. It was the right move for me, and it’s paid off in ways I couldn’t have imagined.

Now, I wouldn’t tell everyone to just quit their job. It was a decision that took a lot of planning and careful consideration. I was lucky to have a backup plan and the support of my husband. Without that, I couldn’t have made the leap.

Back then, I was stretched thin, working over 70 hours a week at a demanding full-time job. I realised I couldn’t give my all to both my job and my personal aspirations. The thought of continuing on that path, neglecting my own dreams, was fast becoming a non-option.

Leaving a steady salary behind was scary, especially with no clients lined up. But staying in my comfort zone wouldn’t bring the fulfilment and success I wanted. So, I decided to take the risk.

My boss thought I was crazy and even offered to let me stay on part-time, working 20 hours a week. For some, that might have been a good compromise. But for me, it wasn’t just about the money. I pride myself on giving 100% to whatever I do, and I knew that splitting my time would mean I couldn’t give my best to either role.

So, despite the uncertainty and scepticism from others, I chose to just DO IT and take my own path. By no means was it an easy decision and on my last day at work I felt physically sick!  As I walked out of the office for the last time and got in my car, for the 1000th time, that day I had doubts and what if’s running through my head!  What the bloody hell had I done?  And more importantly, now I was on my own, where do I start?  There was no one to tell me what to do and I was seriously thinking of going back and asking for my job back!

Now 5 years on, I can confidently say it was the right decision. It hasn’t been easy, and there have been moments of doubt, but the freedom to pursue my passion has been worth every challenge and sacrifice.

I love what I’m doing!

Taking risks can be inspiring, enjoyable, and help you grow in so many ways. Embrace it!

What are the potential rewards of taking risks in life?

Sense of Accomplishment: Taking risks is scary, but it leads to self-discovery. Many people I know had no idea where their journey would take them, but the sense of accomplishment and pride they feel is incredible.

They feel alive for the first time, I know I did!

Personal Freedom: Imagine working with people you like and doing what you really enjoy – this is your path to personal freedom.

Letting Go of the Past: Challenging old routines and assumptions can be rewarding. By taking risks, you can disprove old beliefs and free yourself from negative thoughts and “what ifs”.

Self-Discovery: This is a biggie; risks help you learn about yourself, your values, and what drives you. With new experiences, you can find what truly makes you happy. My journey from being an employee to running my own business has been a profound experience of self-discovery.

Increased Confidence: Each risk you take builds your confidence and makes you more flexible and a better decision-maker.

New Opportunities: Stepping out of your comfort zone can lead to new opportunities, both professionally and personally and it’s so exciting when this happens and I LOVE meeting new people and learning. No more stuck in that 9 to 5 waiting for someone to leave before you get the opportunity to get promoted.

Resilience: Risks teach you how to handle setbacks, building resilience and the ability to navigate challenges like a pro.

No Regrets: If the risk works out, fantastic! If not, it’s a valuable lesson that makes you wiser. We learn from our mistakes.

 

For those who are neurodivergent, taking risks can feel daunting, but it can also lead to incredible personal development and success. Using a Virtual Assistant can be a game-changer, providing essential support and helping to navigate uncertainties.

Starting to take risks can be scary, but that’s okay. It’s natural to want to stay safe. Trust me, taking risks can be fun too. There’s a whole world out there with endless possibilities. To figure out which risks are right for you, just go with your gut. Don’t be afraid to try new things. Even if something doesn’t go as planned, you’ll learn from it and grow.

Curious about how Virtual Assistant support can change your risk-taking journey with a business that understands what it’s like to run a successful business. Schedule a FREE consultation with me—no risk here, I promise!

 

Ps. Yes, that’s me jumping out of a plane for charity!

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