Mary opened her naturopathic practice with a desire to help her patients improve their health. Even after hiring (and firing) several bookkeepers, she still didn’t know her basic expense and revenue numbers.
Mary sought my bookkeeping help, because she worried her company was losing money.
“It’s like we have a wound and can’t find where it’s located to stop it from bleeding,” she told me.
Mary had an emergency business situation.
I did a health check on her business, then recommended a rescue job. Doing this would allow me to find problems in the balance sheet.
But a challenge arose. The client had an invoice management system unconnected to their data file, which meant I couldn’t reconcile the accounts. They’d first need to fix that before I could finish the work. I knew the work could take a while because I’d have to clean up the accounts from the current year and review the previous year, too, to make sure the opening balances were correct.
Once we had an accurate set of accounts, I had bad news to deliver.
They’d made no profit.
“Should we close the company?” Mary asked.
I discussed the pros and cons with her, and we decided to create a budget. Next, I had her identify their low profit and high maintenance clients so she could focus on increasing profitability. Through this process, we discovered business spending exceeded earnings.
When they asked if they should move into the larger building, I advised against it.
“Because you’re already spending more than you’re earning,” I said.
Mary and her team weren’t happy to hear this from me, and we stopped working together not long afterward.
Too often, we bookkeepers make the client the villain. However, in this case, my lack of experience and knowledge was the problem. I could have immediately helped them look to the future while doing the rescue job in the background.
The client needed more money coming in right away, and I didn’t help her with that. I had thought I needed to get the books squeaky clean first before taking other steps.
But I was wrong.
I wish I had been better equipped to help the client sooner, so that’s why I created a program to keep that from happening to others.
I founded The Savvy Bookkeeper to teach bookkeepers to practice what they preach. And the great news is:
“You don’t need to be an ‘expert with a track record’. You just need to care about those you lead, be at least one step ahead of them, and be willing to do whatever it takes to make a difference.” – Amy Hooke
My signature program: Savvy Mentorship: Bookkeepers Edition is the only mentorship in Australia that helps bookkeepers to effectively, and easily sell highly valued business planning and consulting packages to their bookkeeping clients, whilst laying the foundation in their own business so they can teach with integrity.