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Hi. My name is Terry, and I'm the President of Quicksilver Accounting & Consulting,  Wilmington NC.

I created this blog to offer little hints, ideas, strategies and sometimes just silly excerpts from life to help other entrepreneurs gain insight.

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Written in Wilmington, NC

Friday
Oct302015

QB Connect, San Jose CA

On Monday, Gina and I will be in the midst of the Intuit Connect 2016 Conference.  It looks like it's going to be quite a whirlwind of activity, starting each day with great keynote speakers and numerous  breakout sessions.  I'm really interested in what Jessica Alba, singer and businesswoman of The Honest Company and Robert Herjavec of Shark Tank will add. And of course, I want to know what Intuit plans for the coming year.

I'm always interested in visiting the vendors showcase where I might find a new and exciting app that integrates with QuickBooks and give our clients the best financial software experience. Then there is the life improvement seminars like "Work/Life Harmony". I can surely stand to learn something helpful there. And of course,  there are plenty of sessions on how to improve your practice, like "The Accountant's Journey toward Professional Greatness".

Did I mention the GooGoo Dolls are playing at the after party, or that Oprah and Brian Grazer will be giving us their take on entrepreneurs?  I'm also signed up for a session with Mike Michalowicz, author of "The Pumpkin Plan" and one of my favorite books, "Profit First".      

It looks very promising.

Thursday
Oct222015

Budgets are like squirreling away cash for the future

Just like this fellow, we all need to plan for the future. I can't think of a better way to get your business ready for 2016 than to start a budget.  

The process helps you review your current income and forecast what revenue (how many nuts will this red squirrel have to collect?) will be earned in the next year. Then look at expenses and determine what is required (how many nuts will he eat each day?) to give yourselves a comfortable reserve (net profit).

October is the perfect month to start this process, and when you have covered everything,  don't forget to put the information into your financial software so you can compare actual vs budget each month.  You will spot trends much faster and be able to cut expenses earlier by running this important report. 

For Quicksilver's clients, the next step would be for us to add LivePlan Software to track your forecast and study your KPI's , all in one convenient place.  

Don't be left out in the cold without a plan! Warm and fuzzy beats cold and hungry every day.    

 

Saturday
Oct102015

Need cash now? What small business doesn't?

I'm always sitting in on webinars for the various groups I belong to looking for good products to grow my company, and help my clients as well.  A few weeks ago I saw a presentation I thought was kind of outstanding.  Why? Because it was easy to use, stress free, and not expensive.  I've taken my second look at this, and it really is fair and transparent.

I'm talking about FUNDBOX.  This isn't factoring.  FUNDBOX is an App you tie to your QuickBooks file.  I brings your open invoices in, and once you are approved, all you have to do is click the invoice, and the next day the money is in your bank account.  The fees are  lower than other types of funding and are dependent on your background which I would think is mostly supplied to them from your own QuickBooks file, plus other data they easily obtain.  The range isn't that wide, so don't let that scare you away.  And you pay interest only on the time period you keep the loan open, no penalty for early payment. 

For instance, you need $10,000 now for a project or equipment,  and you only have $3000. You need about $7,000 more to accomplish it. You find an invoice (or two) that would give you the amount- click those, and the next day you have the cash minus the fee. Lets say the invoices are paid by your clients the very next month-  you pay off the loan and have only one month of interest to pay. You never give up control of the invoice, or your client.   Now that is super!The current repayment time is over 12 weeks.   Don't sign up for those companies offering 20% interest and daily debits from your bank account!

Check it out,  do your due diligence and if its seems right for you, you can apply and connect it all online in a short amount of time. 

https.fundbox.com

 

Saturday
Jul182015

Pricing on Purpose, Creating and Capturing Value 

by Ron Baker

I watched  Mr. Baker's interview on the National Advisor Network's live stream from New Orleans at their recent conference. I really thought he had a good premise, that the Art of Pricing was where you could improve your profit, not the cost cutting everyone looks at first and which was probably already factored.

What was the meaning of value?  Could we figure out its price and use strategies to improve our profit by billing at what people perceived it was, rather than a backwards look at cost per hour?

What I saw was a very animated and interactive interview with a person I thought had information I needed.  So to that end, I purchased his book (named above).  I wanted to learn more!

The book is a rather large tome of information unlike his direct approach in the interview. He believes you have to know all the history of where an idea or theory came from to go forward. Wish we could see that in shortened version though, like cliff notes.

To be fair, I'm only 1/3 of the way through.  I have highlighted several comments, like this one: "the company explicitly understands that its price determines its costs, and doesn't let the costs dictate the price", and " Modern firms are knowledge organizations, and it is time for them to begin acting as if they understood this fact".  He has strong opinions;  I like that.   He goes on to say that effectiveness is what we should be paid for, not efficiency and a company only exists to create wealth for its customers and should be judged on this alone.  Do our clients understand how we are doing this for them?

He certainly is not a proponent of the hourly rate- something we agree on totally as every new client inevitably asks us, 'and how much do you charge per hour"...and off we go to explain the value added approach we have used since inception in 2007.

What I'm trying to glean is what strategies can I learn about pricing, to make it easier for our clients to understand our true value and pay accordingly. It goes without saying, everything I learn for our own company, we use to help our clients do the same with their customers.  I know that value, not cost must determine price, but the bad 'hourly monster' still resides in hiding in my mind sometimes. Help me explain value to others in a very succinct way and I will be happy I purchased your book.

I'll get back to you when I'm done reading...I really do think he's on to something I want a piece of.  Just trying to get to that has been a bit hard. The book reads like a college book, and I wanted a simpler version.  Maybe Ron will read this blog and come out with the Pricing on Purpose, Creating and Capturing Value for Dummies book this year. 

Saturday
Jul182015

Knowledge is power

I'm excited to announce  Gina and I have become Certified Live Plan Advisors.

I've always said it was important to crete a budget each year.  Just the excercise of creating this makes the owner review each area for opportunities and set goals for the next year. What better way to judge if you are on the right path by comparing actuals to budget?

The essential forecasting tool in LivePlan is basically the budget you create.  By syncing to your QuickBooks file,  dynamic information is being updated at the pace you set.  Trends, industry benchmarks, milestone, and a wonderful scoreboard of KPI's that can be looked at in numerous ways and you have a great tool to help you make those important decisions.  There is even a pitch area for those of you who need funding.

We are excited to add this Advisory Service .