Episode #081 How to Manage Money in a Small Business with Melissa Meagher – hosted by Angie Martin

Learn how to manage money in a small business and your personal life so your business will be amazing!

In today's episode, Angie Martin is talking money with Melissa Meagher. Learning how to manage money in a small business is an essential skill that Bookkeepers can share with their clients. But Bookkeepers often need help in their own businesses too!
And the foundation of that is having a healthy relationship with money in their personal finances.

Melissa Meagher is a Money Mindset & Success Coach, with experience as a financial planner and stockbroker. After interacting with many high functioning professionals, who were usually very well paid because they were experienced and excellent at their jobs, it became obvious that many didn't have the right framework, tools and mindset regarding money.
Even though they were making a lot of money!

Most of these people needed help, even those in the financial sector. By breaking down inhibiting barriers, and gaining the right perspective about money, clients of Melissa gained freedom in their finances. If you listen in, you can too!

Key Takeaway: Knowing where your money goes gives you freedom and choice of where you want it to go.

Podcast Info

Episode: #081

Series: General

Host: Angie Martin

Guest speaker: Melissa Meagher

Topic: Learn how to manage money in a small business by changing your mindset about money

Useful links
Read transcript


How to Manage Money in a Small Business with Melissa Meagher – hosted by Angie Martin



business, bookkeepers, people, money, fixed costs, finances, clients, review, bookkeeping, bank account, melissa, bit, savvy, spending, important, fantastic, covered, paying, stay, clear



Good morning everyone. This is Angie coming from the savvy bookkeeper team and for another episode of The bookkeepers voice, hope you're all are having a fantastic day and are super excited. I know I am today. We are actually joined by guest podcast speaker who is a fantastic and inspirational person I think and I'm super excited for you guys to have to listen to her wisdom and just have a chat with her basically through our podcasts. Her name is Melissa Meagher and she has over 20 years of experience in the financial services industry. She has previously worked as a financial planner stockbroker and seminar delivery specialists. But the main point that I really Love is that she is passionate about finances and making a difference in people's lives, which is what savvy is all about, and why we kind of asked her to come on the show and have a chat. She has broken things down with all of her knowledge base and created a business where she supports, educates and coaches her clients on managing their money to basically success. So thank you so much for joining us today. Melissa.



Thank you for having me. Oh, I'm so excited about this.



It's Um, I think I I first heard about you a couple weeks ago, through a Facebook group the I'm on and instantly basically what Melissa was doing, she was doing a transform your relationship webinar with money webinar, and I decided to take the webinar not for savvy but for my own passion project, which I've mentioned with you guys a little bit in the past. And as I was listening to the webinar, I just got really into what Melissa was saying and couldn't help but think how fantastic it would be to have her share her thoughts on this podcast. So thank you so much for kind of putting the strange pieces together. Melissa, I know during the webinar, I was it was a zoom webinar and my name was actually my business name, my passion project business name. So she had to kind of piece together all the mystery of who exactly is trying to talk to her. So that was amazing. But basically what you've done with talking money is that you've consolidated your financial background in your passion to help people and you you've just created a really fantastic business that helps people think about finances in a different way. Do you want to chat about that a little bit?



Sure. Yeah. Thanks. Thank you. Thanks for having me. Hi, everyone.


Big earners needed help managing finances


Should I just share why I started my business in the first place? Yeah. So that that'll probably give people a good idea of why I decided to leave, you know, financial planning and paid, you know, paid employment and stuff like that. Because over my years in finances, no matter whether I was whether it was financial planning, stock broking, working superannuation funds, you know, wherever I was, I kept having these conversations with people that were very, very good at what they did, you know, really in their genius zone, they could have been self employed, they were employed, you know, didn't matter. And because they're very good at what they did, there was always this expectation that they would also be really good with their money, their money management, you know, all that side of things. And and there is no correlation whatsoever.



Wherever including people in finance, mind you. So, but because there was this expectation that they're, you know that they were all over it, there was a lot of embarrassment and shame. And I, you know, and I've I haven't I have had a number of conversations with people on very, very high incomes very, you know, you know, it's it's still a thing that there's so much embarrassment, shame around if you're not all over your money and your finances and your money management and stuff like that, which then unfortunately, leads people on to make, you know, perhaps make further decisions that are not serving them, putting them under more pressure, and it just keeps spiralling and the conversation I had with someone this week is if we don't, if we don't do something that's like death by 1000 cuts, you know, if we don't do something about this, we're going to get into the position. We're going to have to start you know, selling assets and that sort of stuff. To get us out of this is trouble.



So, I continually will have was having conversations with people and I had a look around. And I won't be as bold to say that there's no one else doing what I do. But I just couldn't find the sort of container that I was wanting to offer people. So I basically decided to want to start my own business and say that really the ethos of my business and that's what I bring to the podcast today is to create a safe space to have a real conversation around money, not what you think it should look like, not what people are telling you, it should look like or you know, your family or friends or whatever. It's actually let's pull the curtain back and shine the light on actually as what's going what's going on. Don't worry about what's happened in the past. That's done. That's, that's finished. Let's just see where you are now. And how you can move forward and that's that's the that's the basis of my business, both on a tangible cash flow side of things, which obviously is what we're talking about today.


Money mindset, your money, stories and money beliefs


And also on the mark your money mindset, your money, stories and money beliefs, which I believe we're going to be talking about next time. So I combine the two together. Because I believe you both you can't have one without the other. So completely agree with that you can clean it all up on the outside and make it look bright and shiny and grey. Now that might be your finances that might be your business that could be whatever's going on in your, in your external world. But if you don't go and then look at what the you know, the motivations and behaviours that are driving this, which in this situation is talking about your relationship with money, that won't be sustainable, and that's why people keep having, you know, keep feeling that they're in that loop or that cycle or pattern with money, and they just come break it.



Yeah, and I think that happens with everyone in different walks of life. You know, a lot of the things that we've been kind of talked about in our podcasts lately, is really trying to break down a lot of bookkeepers create the bookkeeping businesses the way that they think they're supposed to. So you You know, stereotypically bookkeepers are supposed to be very serious, you know, very, you know, there's a wall between the client and the bookkeeper. And that's why a lot of people have this strange relationship and concept that bookkeepers are all the same. And, you know, they're not really all that funny. They're not, you know, enjoyable that they're very serious, stern people, which, in fact, all of our bookkeepers have such interesting backgrounds in such interesting reasons why they created their businesses.


Bookkeepers need professional help too


You know, when we do mentoring with our bookkeeping clients, it's, we go through and break down like, yes, when I do mentoring, I mainly focus on marketing. That's mainly my focus, but we go through and break down everything. And because it's all comes into this one package of creating, why they've created this business and understanding who they've created the business for and in our business plan that we offer through savvy, we make them actually create a personal budget and a business budget. And every time I mentor clients, this section is the part that they pretty much hate doing the most. Even though, you know, I think a lot of bookkeepers and it's the same with mentors, a lot of mentors, mentor businesses in our amazing mentoring their own clients, but when it comes to running their own business, a lot of mentors actually need mentoring.



Absolutely, absolutely. And I've had I've had that you've had about 10 things pop into my brain. I'm number one I've always I mean, I'm a strong believer, I practice what I preach. I've had a business coach from the day. We're talking the other day. Three things happen. When I started my business, I open a business bank account I booked I organised a bookkeeper engaged a bookkeeper and organised business coach and I have have not gone a day in In the last five years, five or six years where I actually haven't had the support of a business coach, because when I fundamentally completely believe in, you know, coaching and that support and being in that space, but the thing is also, you know, I'm feeling I'm filling lots of people's cups up as you are and as your as you know, as bookkeepers they all are, so I actually need someone filling my cup up for me as well.



And then it has that it has that, you know, that flow on effect that the things that I learned from mine, I'm in a mastermind group at the moment, but you know, from what I learned in my group, that I can then go and share, so it's like paying it forward as well. I think I share that with my clients, as well. So it's this beautiful symbiotic sort of relationship that goes on.



The other thing I want to touch on there, Angie is is you know, what people, you know, they feel like what they think they do business should be held it should be like and how it should be run. And I think that you know, that's it comes back to very much I've had numerous conversations with people recently and I know we're getting off topic here but it's kind of around the What did they definition of success is you know, yeah, they they aspire because what they've been told says you know what they've been conditioned by societal conditioning and by uh stories and that sort of thing of what you know what they think success is what it is, which is you know, how you should be running your business and that sort of thing and then when you actually you you may be get to that and I've worked with a number of people that actually get to it and I go, I'm not happy, hang a minute I'm not this is not floating my boat at all. And it was never their, it was never their version of success and it's kind of like the way that you know what you're saying about bookkeepers with their business and stuff like that. It's it's peeling it's taking all this back, you know, it's taking a few step backs back and just you know, it's the other thing I talk to people a lot about what that what what does wealth mean to them like you Wealth can mean so many different things to so many different people. And you know, in they're all It's all right, but a lot of times that's not even necessarily related to money.



Yeah. And


Build your business by design


so I think it's having that, you know, creating that space to sort of move, clear out all the stuff that's not serving them anymore and getting that, you know, getting clarity and awareness and efficiency. So then they can be really, really clear of, you know, building a business by design, as opposed to by default of what they think it should be. Yeah. And then going back and doing the work to actually be able to do that.



And the development Yeah,



yeah, it's so important, and it's what we're really trying to focus on with our clients right now. And also, you know, the reason why watching the webinar the other week with you, the more and more I just kept watching me The more I was like, this goes directly in relation to what we are working with our clients right now. And understanding that just because you're a bookkeeper doesn't mean that you need to have all the answers for yourself.



No, not at all. Not at all. And that's Yeah, that comes back to just because you're a bookkeeper, it doesn't mean you're necessarily you may be very good with other people's stuff. Yeah. But you might not, you know, because we're too close to our own finances. Sometimes, you know, we've got that emotional involvement and, and all that sort of stuff. So it's, it's very easy to go on, you know, so they help other people and support other people. But sometimes it's a bit harder to put your own oxygen mask on, because you are just too close. Exactly. And especially



now, since COVID. The industry has completely changed and a lot of bookkeepers, whole businesses have completely transformed in a very short time. And I think a lot of them you know, the reason why I took the webinar that you Did the other day is that, you know, when I came to Australia, I was paying a lot of money in visas in school to stay in the country. And I had very little funds and because that time was so I wouldn't say traumatic, but so instrumental into how I was able to basically survive and become the person that I am now. It has changed my perspective on finances. And it's getting to the point that I think it's because of our bookkeeping clients that I can see how it's affecting me, and how it is actually shaping my decision making processes, both personally and professionally.



And I think that resonates with a lot of bookkeepers as well, because bookkeepers always have this thing that they're always afraid of losing a client No matter how amazing they are, and we deal with some bookkeepers that are so talented, have so much to give their clients but there's always that little bit of hesitation where they're scared to do the next step. Because what if I lose a client? Hmm. And I think that comes around to their relationship with money and how they think about money, and their finances as in general. So what kind of thought would be great, just to start off the conversation today about talking about money is going through and really helping everyone understand the importance of knowing your numbers. Sure, bookkeepers we are we talk about this all the time, because that's what bookkeepers do. But again, they don't have anyone saying this to them. So I'd love to pick your brain on it a little bit and kind of figure out what why It's so important to shine a light on your finances. Yes,



absolutely. Absolutely. Yeah. And it's a really interesting thing with our own personal finances because we can be very a lot of times we actually don't want to look at it because we just don't want to look at it. It's like pushing it away pushing it away pushing you away. And it's that you know, it's really interesting because we're fearful of actually what we're going to see and what we're going to when we do pull the curtain back and shine out you know, shine a light on our finances we're actually fearful of what we're going to find. And it's interesting thing is that fear is actually what's holding us back which is what is keeping us small which is what's stopping us from you know, stepping into power both personally and in our business. It is important to have a look at you know, knowing your numbers and understanding what makes up your money pot and that sort of thing.


Knowing where your money goes, gives you freedom and choice of actually where you want it to go


Because my favourite saying and I'm gonna, I'll probably, you know, trot out a few of my sayings today on the podcast. My favourite thing of all time, and it's actually my saying is, knowing where your money goes, gives you freedom and choice of actually where you want it to go. So it's not making it right or wrong, it's not making it good or bad. It's just being able to make those you know, once you have this information, once you have the data, once you have the, you know, knowledge, you're then able to make educated, informed decisions about what you want to do, how you want to structure it, how you mean. And so what I like, you know, and what I'll be sharing this today is just really, you know, breaking down the ways that you can, the way that you can do that.



And the first one is to actually, you know, as I say, is to go make friends with your bank account, if you actually go and look and I say this kind of flippantly and jokingly, but the number of people I know, I know, women that don't want to go and actually have looked at their bank accounts actually don't want to go and see what is going on. So my number one thing is To go make friends with your bank account, go and just have a look, have a look at what's, you know, what's going in, you know, what the flow of funds is around your bank accounts, what sort of what's the structure of your bank accounts.



And, you know, and what's coming up, you know, how it's how the flow of funds is happening, you know, understand how much you have coming in, do you understand where you've got, you know, what you your business income, whether you've got investment income, whether you might have income from centrelink, child support, wherever it is, it's understanding, and you know, I call this sort of doing a personal financial audit when you were on your own finances. So it's, you know, it's about line in the sand stuff, let's just, you know, because another thing that I really love is the best map in the world is no good if you don't know where you are. And that is so appropriate when we're talking about



is I love that.



Yeah. And the thing is also, you know, it's important to understand where you are, but also the thing is if you're wanting to do something different, so That might be to, to reduce debt that might be putting away money for cash reserves, particularly, you know, that's a fairly big, you know, important thing for people at the moment. It might be to build wealth it might be to reinvest in your business, put away money for holidays, which is a big, you know, big thing, a lot of people do this at the moment when they can, you know, put away money for kids education, whatever it might be, you have to understand what makes up your money pot, because you're going to have to do something different if you want to start channelling money to different areas, and changing the structure and that sort of things. So you know, first of all, it's really important to understand where you are.



I love that you just thought that it's so important in that's actually when we do I just went through three different mentoring sessions, the last two month and a half. Were doing the business budget. I made them do their business budget now. And all of these clients want to grow their business for you. multiple different reasons. They want to grow the business. Yes. So I made them do the business budget now, and then do the business budget for what their goal is to how they're going to get their goal to happen. So it's thinking in the future, which is so similar to what you were just, yeah.



Yeah. Yeah. And so it's just, you know, I mean, so it's just having that understanding of you know, where you're at. Because once you clear that space, then you're in a position to then be able to say, Well, what you mean and that's, that's my final piece of when I'm doing my programme is, what are your visions? What is your vision? What are your aspirations You mean, we spend so much time in our lives focusing on what we don't want, what we don't have, what we don't have enough of what we're missing out on. Sometimes it's well, you know, and where your focus goes, your energy flows. So that's one thing is if you keep thinking about it, guess what's gonna keep showing up in your life. Exactly. That's going a little bit you know, left of centre there, but The other thing is, it's sometimes it's, you know, it's, it's, it's hard to focus on actually what we do want. So it is really getting into that space of, you know, really, you know, I love my favourite saying is if there was no barrier of time, money or skills, what was your greatest life look like and what will be possible?



Yeah. And that's what I think any entrepreneurs. So most bookkeepers are actually entrepreneurs.



So yeah, anyways, anyone that's got their own businesses,


Why did you start your business in the first place ?


so anyone who has their own business, I feel like this should be a question that they're consistently asking them like, being your own boss and having your own business is so much work. You have to consistently remind yourself why you've done it in the first place. What are your goals, what are your objectives of having this business, and, you know, most of the time, it's either to be able to retire to be able to turn the family into a sole one person Working in the one person focusing more on family or being able to retire with more money or, you know, being able to send kids to a really good school or, you know, it all comes down to goals that involves their finances, their personal finances.


Bad personal finances usually result in business failure


Yeah, yeah, absolutely. And the other thing is not just something you just like, it's big lift, different, but you've just reminded me of something with people with, with their businesses. And I used to, I used to work with them, a person, you know, that had people that had done franchises and stuff like that, that people bought that came on and bought a franchise. And I used to do these sessions, as you know, part of the induction training and that sort of thing. And it's two things that this this guy that owned the franchise, just say if your personal finances and your personal relationships aren't solid, you won't, you know, you'll fail in your business. I agree. And the other thing is, which is you know, it was at the time I thought oh wow! that's a bit, you know, severe and stuff like that, but it's actually it is so true.



And the other thing that's really important about you know, as a business owner as an entrepreneur, is that you need to be really clear on what your personal finances is, what your financial commitments are, what your cost of living are, because that needs to be factored into your business as an expense. If you're the you know, men in you know, if your goal is to, you know, if you've maybe another person in, you know, another partner or has a as a has an income as an, you know, as an employee, or you might be both business owners, whatever it is, but these expenses, you know, your personal living costs, need to be factored in and, you know, even so that they had the, you know, their, their modelling tools and stuff like that, when they were, you know, when they were doing the budgets for their businesses that there was actually they create a special section in that budget as for living, you know, personal living costs, so they actually physically affected that is seen as an expense in their business because obviously, that You know, that's when you're starting out. If you're if you want to be, you know that that's your sole form of income and that sort of thing. I mean, that is for me, I'm on my own. I don't have a partner. So my business is my that's it lifeline. Yeah, that's it. So I need to be very, very clear, and very clear on what my, you know, what my business costs are, which I know. But you know, also be very, very clear on what my cost of living is. Because that needs to that's basically what needs to be cover by business needs to cover to maintain


Fear of looking at your accounts


yeah, I love that. And like, it's, it's just really I love that you call it the money pot, knowing your money pot, like, it's so important to do. And I know, even as bookkeepers like, I have a background in bookkeeping, and I know so many bookkeepers who just don't like to look at that. It's like you said, you just don't like to look at it where I'm actually in the process. I know To look at my bank account less, because on the other extreme, I'm on the other extreme where I had such intense budgets every single dollar. Yes, this is going back about four years, every single dollar was allocated. Yes. So I would actually check my bank account every day. Yep. Sometimes a couple times a day. I'm not gonna lie. So I checked it.



Exactly what was going on? Because living? Exactly, and that gets back to that yet. So you need to try and, you know, reframe those beliefs now. Yeah. So



it's kind of the opposite of everyone else. But, you know, I think it's a really healthy thing to be able to make friends with your bank account and make friends with what's going in and it's not to punish yourself. If you had, you know, a spending day. It's letting yourself know that this is what's happening. It's having that awareness. It's



you know, I love the show. I'll talk a bit in a sec about, you know, perfecting lifestyle spending but like, you know, having I call it conscious spending habits, like it's just having that awareness around, you know, just being aware and present and conscious of where and what you're spending your money on. So it doesn't matter what that is. But it's, it's, you know, it's just having that, you know, that, you know, that clarity and awareness of where and where and when it's being spent on and, you know, what's what's happening and stuff like that. So it's not, yeah, it's, I don't I actually don't particularly like the word budget because I feel like people immediately feel like they, you know, that they have to deny themselves something and they're gonna go into that, you know, it's gone. It's like the word diet in a way like it's, you're gonna be taken away something nice, you need to be denied, you know, all that sort of stuff. And I don't which goes into that more that you know, that scarcity and lack mindset and stuff like that. So I just, which is what we've been talking about that you you're having to do some work. Now.


Scorched earth isn't a good approach to finances


So I really like to flip it and talk about, you know, conscious spending, a conscious spending plan, you know, those sorts of things. So it's not about going scorched earth and doing nothing, because that's not going to be sustainable anyway. It's not, it's just about being very, you know, having everything set up. And, you know, the other you know, the other thing I love is you can't manage what you don't measure. So it's just about being, you know, understanding and, and bookkeepers. I mean, obviously, that that would be one of you know, could be a mantra as a bookkeeper. But it's a, you know, understand what you've got coming in, understand what you get what you've got going out, and that's where I do a lot of, you know, provide a lot of support for people. So we go through and review people's fixed costs.


What are your Fixed Costs ?


Fixed Cost is anything that you pay, and this is talking about mean, I'm talking from a personal perspective, but obviously, you know, I've worked with a lot of clients that are that have got their own businesses. So I say This can be completely whatever I talk about can be mirrored in your business as well. So some numbers remain your fixed cost is anything that you pay on a regular ongoing basis, usually, you know, usually about the same amount. So it's, you know, it's your rent, it's your mortgage, it's your loan repayments, your insurances, your utilities, your phone and internet, your streaming subscriptions, which is a big thing for a lot of people now. You know, memberships, your rights, your body corporate, your education, you know, children's costs, childcare, childcare, education, you know, so all those things that you can have regular ongoing basis.



I think first thing is for people to actually list out what they've, what they've got, what their fixed costs are, and then go through and do a, you know, a tick or a cross besides the ones that you can review and the ones you can't review because there's some that you can't review. So, if you live in if you own a property, you can't review your rates council rates it. If you live in a townhouse or a unit block, you can't review your body corporate fees, they know they usually set, if you own a car, you can't review your registration of your car. So, you know, a lot of most places you run usually have one water provider. So you can't shop around different, you know, water providers. So, so it's going through and, you know, working out which ones you can and can't review. And then people say, Oh, yeah, I know, so I should review them but I don't have you know, hours and days to to go around and ring all the different providers. And I'm not actually 100% sure what my policy plan cover whatever you've got, actually covers. So and so I don't know whether I'd be you know, comparing apples with apples or apples with oranges and I completely get there and it's in it can be you know, it can be very, very daunting, overwhelming.



And when I suggest to people is just wring your current provider, tell them you're having a look around and you would like a review of whatever you have with them. can be just one phone call. I love this. And I, I can't guarantee 100% of the time, but I'll probably I reckon about 90 something percent of the time, they will offer us some incentive, which is usually a financial incentive to stay with them. Because it's much, you know, it's much easier for them to particularly in the current environment, to keep an existing customer or client, then try and go and get new ones. So they will usually offer you some incentive to stay with them, which will usually be a financial one. So and then obviously, if they don't, or you want to go and actually have a look around the marketplace or whatever, you know, I just do a compare and contrast. There are fantastic organisations that can give you a hand with that as well. So



and that's something we actually we last month we launched our priorities masterclass where it's, again, not necessarily just about bookkeeping, it's about anyone really, but it's understanding your priorities and prioritising them. So in our master class we went through and basically you write down 25 priorities, and then you whittle it down to five priorities. Yeah. And then you figure out when you're going to do those five priorities once those priorities are done, then you move on to the next.



Yeah, right. Fantastic. It's like tracking, you know, how do you eat an elephant?



One show?



Yeah, exactly. And it's like for things like that



if, if, you know, looking through those fixed costs that could be changed is a priority than it needs to be a hit. You know, I'm really bad at being one of these people. And I know a lot of other people are that I just don't have the time to do it. Yeah. If it's priority, you should be making time to do it.


Accountability brings good results


Well, it's, it's I usually provide, I don't get I don't do it for people because I haven't you know, I'm there to sort of give them the tools and the support to be able to do it. Very much the accountability as well, yes, I love the accountability. But I've been I've been I will give them I will direct them to particular people to have a chat to or you know, bring their current provider or if you want to look at other external you know, people that there's I will give them people that they can actually talk to. So they don't actually have to go source that for themselves on this. So it's, it's, yeah, it's giving, sharing my resources and my contacts for them to make this process as easy as possible. Because, you know, the beauty is, if you can save a little bit, you know, in all these different areas with your fixed costs, all of a sudden you freed up cash flow for everything else, or to do whatever you need to do, you know, mean, to direct to these other areas or just to have this lifestyle or to have this, you know, whatever that is, whatever is important for you, and that's different for everyone. But it's a really, it's a really easy way to free up without really changing anything. Free up cash flow.



There's two other things when people are reviewing their fixed costs, I always get them to check as well, if they're if they're going to the trouble of doing it, is to make sure whatever they've got in place best reflects their current circumstances. That's a really big one as well. Like if you're going No, that's why I say, Tell him having a look around you'd like to review. I'll give you my personal example is that just recently I reviewed my private health insurance because I think getting fairly regular letters saying that my premiums increasing and my premium was increasing. It was just getting to a point where I was actually I was going this is just going a bit too much on a fortnightly basis with everything else. Yeah, I reviewed my private health insurance. And not only did I significantly reduce my premium, which was fantastic, but I found that the cover I had which was a fantastic cover, but it was for someone about 30 years older than me and touchwood there was a lot of things in my cover that I will never know that I hopefully will never have to claim on. So I actually changed the type of cover that I had to better reflect The circumstances and what I want covered for myself and my kids at the moment. So that was fantastic.



So it just and now when I claim I'll actually get a bit of you know, get a bit of payout. And it's very reflective of what we've, you know, what we, what I want to have covered. And the third thing is to make sure that what you think you actually have covered is covered. So the example I will give you here is with your contents insurance, on your home, a lot of people feel like, I'm thinking that they've got different events covered through their contents insurance, you know, there's all different events that you can have covered. And then when we go and review it, they realise that they actually didn't have that cover in place for that event. So then they obviously can then you know, they're in a situation to make an educated, informed decision whether actually, they want to put that in place or not. But you know, it's nothing worse than actually particularly with insurances that something happens,



and you go to cover it,



and you're, you find out you're not covered. So that's another thing so you know, making sure what you're paying is as efficient as possible. What you've got To best reflect your current circumstances, and what you think you're paying for and you've got covered, is actually covered as well. So some really, you know, fantastic things to look at there with your fixed costs.



Yeah, I love that. I think it's really important. Especially, you know, again, because bookkeepers a lot are business owners and those fixed costs, typically, especially if it's the sole income household, those fixed costs for personal just amplify when it's also fixed costs for businesses, because a lot of bookkeepers have ongoing fixed fee costs for subscriptions for the different applications that they use and those you really can't not pay, or else then you can't help your clients.



You can't sustain your business. Yeah,



yeah. So it's really good. I think for bookkeepers to be able to go through and see what they can change



to really make the most out of it because you know, especially right now The world of bookkeeping is changing. And this is basically the time for bookkeepers to be if they are wanting to grow to be actively creating lead generation campaigns, working on their marketing, everything like that and, you know, really analysing and going through to how they can make that happen. Yeah, while also making sure that the cash flow is still you know, really still fluid and that the financial structure is still in a way that it's going to be a success.



Yeah. And I had a I had a client that I was working with recently there was a business owner and she went through and reviewed you know, I mean because a lot of things are just automated, you know, I mean, a direct debit or come off your credit card or whatever. And, you know, it just happens every month and you don't really and she went through and actually and she had a lot of different subscriptions and things and and I can't remember what she but she actually and there was some stuff that she didn't really need any more mean there was some that had to say You say, you know, obviously, there was some stuff that had to stay for her to be able to, to conduct her business to run a business, but she closed down a few things. And, you know, stopped a few things. And it's, you know, I mean, once again, that freed up cash flow in her business, because it was, you know, reducing her fixed costs. So it's, it's a really good thing to do. And it's a very simple way to free up, you know, two


Savvy reviewed their expenses


years, we after COVID actually hit team savvy had a big meeting. And we we actually went through we did basically the Financial Review of savvy as a team together and went through all of the different fixed fees ongoing, just everything that goes through to make savvy because it's quite, you know, it takes quite a few different subscriptions to make clearly a business and we went through it and there was so many things were once we looked at it as a whole, that we could just get rid of it.



wishing I mean, everything you should question. Well, why have you got it here? Why is it you know, why are we using it wasn't in place? Is it essential? Can we replace it with something that's just as good that this doesn't, you know, unless it's a fee, you know, I mean, it's just yeah, there's all those sorts of things.



Yeah. And it was, it was really I think, I think as a team, it was really therapeutic thing to really understand where the money was going out what was going on, and being able to go through and check off the things that were no longer necessary. It was really, it was a lovely feeling to be able to be like, we have just fixed this bit. And if it was something like $100 a month, that's still 1200 dollars a year.



I just, I just I just removed a couple of things from my foxtel and I've just made up $30 a month. I'm just like, it's fantastic.



Yeah, it adds up. Yeah, and you know, with me, I'm I'm so big at


Money saved can be put into making money


You know, consistently learning and consistently upskilling myself that, you know, $30 a month. For me, that's a whole heap of different mentoring things that I can do and it gets me excited and it gets me inspired to keep doing it. And I know right now with a lot of our community, they're all thinking the same thing. And they're since bookkeeping has completely changed, they want to put the money that they're getting now back into their businesses to further their businesses and further you know, what their overall objectives are, and which is great I love that it's right up my alley of what the way I



need to say yeah, yeah,



but it's it's one of those things that can be really exciting that once you start doing it, it's like opening a can of worms. There's could be some


Therapeutic benefit of clearing up your finances


very, it can be very liberating and you know, there's a lot of, you know, more in though in the energetic space and stuff like that about you, I mean, of clearing your clearing your home, you know, clearing out your cupboards and you know spaces and stuff like that. So it's the same, it's kind of the same thing in your business, that if you're freeing up these spaces, then you bring your will. So you're opening the space or creating a space for something new to come in. And so and so, apart from saving money to be able to, you know, reallocate to different areas, you creating this beautiful thing, yes, it's a, it's, you know, my, my coach, and he says, you know, how you do one thing is how you do everything. So, it's very, very true with, with all this, you know, decluttering and clearing out the spaces, you know, all that sort of thing. It's really it's quite interesting. If you do that, and create that, you know, if you're, if you don't, if you're really crowded and cluttered and stuff like that, there's no room for anything else to come in.



And, to be honest, this is so not about financials, but that's how my That's how my brain works. So



if my house or my desk, my any living area starts to get really cluttered and really messy, that typically shows that my head is not in a great place. And it carries out through everywhere. But it's visibly noticeable when my house starts to get really messy or anything like that. Like I like things all very tidy and neat. Yeah. And as soon as it starts stops being that it's because my brain isn't the same way. And I feel like when people are afraid to look at their finances, sometimes their finances, there's nothing wrong with them. No, no, but it could be a decluttering or something that needs to happen to make them feel more comfortable.



Yeah, yeah, it's just, it's just a knowing what, you know, it's just that you know, it's just reviewing your fixed costs and the other. The other area I work with people on this is actually you know, tracking their lifestyle spending having a look at their lifestyle spending all their discretionary spending. So, the way that I said, you know, it's anything that's not a fixed costs, and pretty much every time you walk out the door and spend money, that's what it is. So it's for a lifestyle thing. So, you know, groceries going out socialising, personal grooming, coffees, alcohol, whatever you mean, whatever you spend your money on. That's the other area because once we review our fixed costs, they're pretty much done, they're pretty much set in stone. The thing that beauty with our lifestyle spending is we have a little you know, we have a lot more flexibility on you know, what they where that money can be channelled and directed and that sort of thing. So, the other thing I suggest people to do is to track their spending their lifestyle spending for 30 days, once again, it's not about right or wrong or good or bad. It's just understanding where and what you're spending your money on because then you can make a decision of are you comfortable with where you're spending money on you know, maybe I'll use coffees or as a good example to pick on you know,


My coffee habit could be holding me back ?


I I do the coffee like I cut out coffee buying coffee when I moved here. Because where I was in my spending that three or $4 a day, that added up,



it sure does it sure does and if you're if you're really trying to be careful, obviously that's so it's not about saying don't have coffee. It's if you actually track it for 30 days and go, Holy moly, I didn't realise it's, it's just having that awareness. Holy moly, I didn't know I was just paying that much on coffee. All right, we might just, you know,



cut the coffee and we'll buy a nice coffee machine and do it at



home or whatever it might be. Come back by one a day. Get a coffee machine, whatever it is, like I've had clients that yes, that have done all of the above. Yeah, nice coffee machine. You know, mean, say it's and I've made a couple of really nice. It's so it's, it's, it's not a one size fits all for everyone. It's just actually sort of, and once you have that information, you can then make a decision on where you're if you're happy with what you're spending on coffees, that's absolutely fine like with everything. But if you've got other areas that you want to spend on either lifestyle, or you want to channel it into these different areas, then you can say, Well, you know, if we just cut back a little bit in this area, this area, this area, then we've got this money to channel into these other areas. But unless you know that unless you have that information, that data, you can't, like, you don't know this, you're sort of running blind, you don't have those, you know, you don't have the information to actually be able to make those decisions



now, and I love that and that's what I find really interesting with how you, you know, were able during the session that I attended, I found it really interesting when you went through in you know, going through the different scenarios that you're currently living in, about how you know what's helping or hindering you to manage your money. I think you know, by understanding your cash flows by knowing your personal spending and knowing your lifestyle spending, it really helps you understand more “What is hindering?” I think, you know, for, for a lot of people “knowing what's hindering?”


Is my financial structure helping me ?


Yeah, yeah, it's exactly it's like, you know, I mean, so it's you know, does your does your current structure help you or hinder to manage your money? So is it really streamlined and seamless and automated? Or is it really clunky with lots of you know, human involvement, always fun, the more human involvement, the more clunky it's going to be and the less likely you'll ever need to happen will happen. And that's just, you know, that's just human nature. So it's just and you know, it's not a, I don't say, this is a one size fits all like I've got, you know, as I shared the other night, I've got strategies that you can look at doing and setting up different bank accounts and flows of funds and automating and all that sort of thing. As a you know, as a baseline. It's just making sure everything's as efficient as possible.



Like it's, you know, reviewing your bank accounts. If you've got bank accounts open, then you're not using that you're paying fees on why it's like, close them, close them, don't have them open. The other thing is, you know, reviewing your debt. Make sure there's efficient as possible, like make sure you're minimising the amount. And when I say efficient as possible, I'm talking about minimising the amount of interest that you're paying. So there's, you know, there's lots of strategies you can look at doing, to make sure that there is, you know, there is efficient as possible. And once again, I've got fantastic people that can help that help my clients to do that review and make sure that there is efficient as possible. So there's, you know, there's all sorts of things of making sure that the efficiency, the flow of funds is, you know, streamlined and seamless and automated, but also that there's, you know, there is efficient as possible.



Make sure that, you know, because it just, once again, it removes that whole going on in your brain. But if it's all if that's all sorted, you don't have to make this decision. Every time someone asks you to do something, you have to go, Okay, what bills I've got coming, what are we doing while they're committed like this is this whole process that you have to go through the way that I you know, Get my clients to set it up that they actually don't. They're very, very, very clear of what you know, there's money available for fixed costs. I've got good clarity over what you know, what's lifestyle spending, and then then also know what's left over to perhaps allocate in general, you know, allocate to different areas.


Is fear holding me back from good business choices ?


Yeah. And it's so important, especially with bookkeepers right now, because the industry is changing so much, and so much is going more digital. I know that there's a lot more talk, especially even just within savvy, bookkeepers are understanding they need websites, and they need websites. Now, they need that digital presence and, you know, getting a website made, that's a good website that's going to help your business grow, you know, isn't inexpensive. It's something that you need to have money to allocate towards. And



I know for a lot of people what's holding them back from having a website is solely just the financial report.



applying it. Yeah. And it's one of those things that you know, the more you understand what's happening with your budget, and the more that you're aware of it. Typically, it's not that you can't afford it. It's that you're not allowing yourself to do that. And that goes for anything for any business. Any, you know, it's any growth that you want to be able to do. If you're not watching and managing your business and understanding what's helping and hindering it. Yes. Then you can't really say with an educated understanding, yes, I can't afford this or no, I can't begin or just mentally saying no to it.



Yeah, yeah. And you're closed.






But, I mean, I actually mean, I've recently had my it took my eyes set on for a long time and I knew that I was actually getting in the way I actually had, you know, I had a new website done, and then that got done. And then I that might be to actually go and review all my legal document. Because I needed to be updated and stuff like that, and this is put in place and so, you know, mean, I've just gone through a whole process of start off making sure I had my, you know, privacy agreement my terms and conditions and stuff like that for my website, but then I, you know, got a new coaching agreement done. I'm running retreats so I've got a, you know, a retreat. You know, it's just, it's just and I just, I feel I have I've had about six new documents created by you know, by a solicitor and I just, I just feel fantastic you mean it's just it's, it's given me that you know, that baseline to to really go and, you know, build my business build it in different areas. And just to know that I'm you know, I'm sorted. Yeah. It's very, very grown up actually.



Honest you're the third person to say that and like the last four weeks, yeah, because everything, everything that's been happening, our templates have been very popular among bookkeepers to stay organised. streamline their processes. Yeah. And everyone's been saying it makes me feel very grown up to have these sorted.


Getting your professional ducks in a row is empowering


It's a really funny thing, and it just gets back very much the, you know, the sort of mindset stuff as well, but it's it's a way of not having, you know, and this is generally speaking, but like, you know, if you don't have a website, you don't have your late, you know, your proper documents, you know, your proper baseline, you know, foundations in place, you're saying, Oh, well, it's not really a serious business, you know, I mean, it's just any I mean, a lot of a serious business and making, you know, providing families with a sole income and stuff like that. So it's not, you know, it's just a bit of a sideline business. You know, it's just, it's not it's a serious, ongoing concern should be given the respect it deserves, like, you know, it's like, and I, you know, I've had, yeah, and it's just and that was a big understanding for me with the stuff I'm doing the work I'm doing with my coach and in my mastermind group and stuff like that. But it was, it was a really important thing for me to actually, you know, make the investment because that was a signal, you know, was a reasonable investment, both on my website and also then getting these legal documents in place to make sure. And it's, it's, it's actually really it's had a big impact on my how I feel about my business now and that sort of thing. So it's just yeah, it's really don't underestimate it. Yeah, absolutely don't you know, on a personal perspective, on a business perspective, don't underestimate the power of doing this stuff and how that's gonna have it's going to impact you, which and then how it impacts you is how you're showing up and what you're going to attract with your, you know, with clients and that sort of thing. It's really it's kind of like that symbiotic sort of relationship.



Love it.



Yeah, it's really it's really important stuff and not to be you not to be ignored.


Don't hate doing your budget for yourself


Yeah. Now I love it. It's been I think this has been such a great podcast, just having that open conversation about finances and open understanding. And I think, you know, every time we get to that one section in the business plan, pretty much everyone is always either, you know, even though there, we have bookkeepers that are just amazing at budgeting, and they're like, Oh, yeah, I already have a budget. I'll do it. There's still always that comment that, but I hate doing it for me. Yeah. And it's opening up that conversation to feel more comfortable and doing it for you. And, you know, it's a very famous thing that Amy, the owner of the savvy bookkeeper talks about is bookkeepers should not be doing their own bookkeeping. No, that's a very big thing because they need that checkup to make sure that they're doing the right thing as well. It's the same thing for the you know, every kind of business kind of thing. But I think, you know, this has been a really great session and I know you kind of mentioned a little bit before about your retreat. And I know you have one that's coming up very shortly. Do you want to just have a quick little thought about that? Yeah,


Wealth consciousness retreat for professional women


I've got it. It's a wealth consciousness retreat for professional women. So it's coming up in September. It's the 15th to the hang on it's 15th to the 18th of September it's up in Montville in the Sunshine Coast. Obviously, it's for at the moment, it'll be Queenslanders only.



which is you know, that's okay. But it's just it's it's really doing a deep dive into, you know, what's going on for you. This is, you know, man, this is what I'll just read you my title. So this retreat is perfect for you have already have the self awareness that there is an unhealthy relationship with money going on. And you're ready to take inspired action and break free from the cycle that keeps showing up in your life. So it's, you know, it's free It's sort of it's, it'll be doing what we talked about today on the tangible side of things, but also very much on the mindset side of things or whatever needs to be cleared around limiting beliefs and blocks will clear that and that, you know, my, my very big goal is for women to not you know, have a beautiful retreat because we're going to have a bit you know, we're going to be cooked for we're going to have some beautiful wine if that's



all before holiday, it's going to be I don't just mean people that know me, it'll be a really lovely



lovely cheese, you know, me know, that sort of stuff. But really importantly, so we'll be doing it in a beautiful, luxurious environment and where we're staying is spectacular. But it's, I've been on a lot of I've been on quite a lot of retreats myself, and you know, you have this amazing time there. But you know, then the minute you leave, you go back and it's just back to normal. Back to normal. I mean, I will come back to my family, you know, come back to my life. You know, mean? So So I want my my wish for everyone and they will be leaving with this is that you know we're going to clear the space and then it'll be in a different focus is different reasons might mean a business women that are coming along now the what ladies that are already coming and so there's, you know whatever your intention that you want to actually achieve you will have a very tangible Strategic Action Plan to actually take and implement the minute you actually get back.



do long notes and I will also part of my retreat is actually doing a follow up session after the retreat, just just touch base and see how you're going with what you know your plan that you want and it's going to be different for everyone it's not going to be you know, it's it's whatever you're wanting to achieve because the ladies that are coming there's different reasons that they they're coming. But it's um, yeah, I'm really really looking forward to it. So there are some spots still available. So if anyone is interested, please some please let me know or later Let Angie know and we can, we can get the details to you.



Yeah, for anyone who is interested, we are going to be having all of Melissa's links in our quick links on our website. So you can just easily go to there, we do have a very special link that we are going to be including in our podcast links as well. And that is a special offer that Melissa has been nice enough to offer all of our savvy community members and the bookkeepers voice listeners, and that is a special 45 minute complimentary complimentary strategy session. And that will be of course over zoom. And we will have the link for that in our all of our Quick Links. We'll we'll put all the Quick Links in there for you. And if you want to kind of have a bit of a discussion about you know where you are at just personally, either professionally or personally, however you want to do it. You know, you might not be one of me, because I know there are a couple bookkeepers in our community that over do budget as well and keep themselves on a very tight leash. And then feel kind of guilty when they do do something that's for them or if you're on the other spectrum and just love spending the money, and then, you know, get into a bit of trouble that way. I think it'd be great to pick Melissa's mind a little bit and see what can come up that but



that's an interesting one that you're saying there and you know, I mean, it's, it's, it's might be overspending it might be under spending might be you know, allowing, giving yourself permission to spend on yourself. I've worked with women, and all those different spaces and it's not, it's, you know, none of these are right or wrong or good or bad. It's just whether they're serving you or not. That's the thing and that's clearly things impacting you in your life, you know, personally, professionally and your business and your relationships. If it's showing up and it's not, you know, It's not serving you. That's the you know, that's what we need to look at at clearing.



Yeah, I love it. Thank you so much for joining us. Well, that's



right. Thank you. Thank you for having me. Thanks. Right. Yeah, like having a chat.



Oh, no, I love it makes it so much nicer to do a podcast this way.


Mastering your money mindset


I love this. Now, next week, everyone, we are going to have Melissa back again. And we are going to be talking more about mastering your money mindset, which is what I'm personally really excited about. I think it's going to be a really great chat, especially for those of you who businesses have actually become really really busy since COVID. I think it would be a really fantastic episode to tune in and just kind of help you readjust your on mindset in towards, managing and understanding your money and your finances. I think it'll be a really great episode and I'm really looking forward to it but Thank you so much for joining us today, Melissa



dress my absolute pleasure. Thank you for Thank you for having me.



Absolutely. Now, as always guys, stay safe, sane and savvy. Thank you so much.