training in all departments
How do family businesses prepare the next generation to take over? Early in my career, I worked at a publicly held gas pipeline company. Management identified newly hired “stars,” and they would be put on a fast track, spending each of the next 4 years switching from one department to another, allowing them to learn all about the company, from the view of each operating department, from marketing to HR, from business operations to accounting. Though they didn’t become experts in any of these areas, they learned the impact of each department on the company overall. If you are an
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Companies run into trouble from time to time. But why do some companies survive those troubles and others don’t? To me, there are two issues. First, it’s knowing when to ask for help. Second, it’s being willing to follow the advice that you’re given. But not everyone waits till they’re in trouble to ask for help. I remember getting a call from a business owner who said he was doing pretty well, he just wanted some help because he “didn’t know what he didn’t know.” Sometimes I meet with companies that are in a different situation. They have waited so
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Credit Umbrella IDK Series
Part of the I don’t know what I don’t know series No business owner wants to borrow money. It strains your emotions, costs you interest, and eats up valuable staff time. Properly used, credit can be a boon, because it can propel your business to the next level. Or maybe it’s a safety net so you can sleep at night. What are some special things that you should know? Credit costs money – Borrowing money costs more than just interest. Origination Fees – If you’re borrowing from the bank, they charge you to initiate the loan. Commitment Fees – They
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cash flow
Part of the I don’t know what I don’t know series Everyone wants more cash, and a business is no different. Cash pays your employees, buys raw materials and products that you sell, and pays for the building you’re in. You need to understand how much cash you have, when it’s coming in, and when you need to spend it. Here’s a few cash flow hints: Create a Cash Flow Forecast. Every day you look at how much cash you have in the bank. You do a quick calculation in your head about how much payroll is going to be,
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Are the people who work for you honest? Of course – or are they? Internal controls are designed to keep your business safe. No matter how honest people are, when they get into trouble, it’s just a short step from borrowing $20 from petty cash to issuing a check to themselves (or a fake company) and signing it. Even if they’re just “borrowing” from you, it’s still theft. Every year, owners discover that the office manager they trusted has been writing checks to themselves for $1,000 to $10,000 a month for the last 10 years. The losses run from thousands
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