Record-keeping for Women in Business
If you're in the planning and growing stages of developing your business, you'll know how important it is to keep adequate records. As part of your role in developing your company, you'll delegate or control the ongoing record-keeping process, including financial and tax data related to the business.
There are many financial reports that you'll use on an ongoing basis, both to understand your own cash flow (money coming in versus money going out) and to demonstrate for banking, insurance, and other external purposes.
You'll become familiar with your Balance Sheet, Profit & Loss, and monthly bank statements.
You'll also be keeping track of customer information such as contact information and notes about projects, vendors/suppliers/distributors, facilities, maintenance agreements, bank routing numbers, and passwords and PINs.
Much of this may be done online using tools like project management software, customer relationship management tools, databases, or online billing tools--- (as a note, more than a few of the startup clients at my web design business use Google Docs, PayPal, a Facebook Fans page, Twitter, Constant Contact, and Quickbooks online and call it a day!)
However, your protocol helps maintain a central depository of information, so that authorized parties who want to grab the company's current "snapshot" can access and understand the overall health of the company at any given moment.
When you're working "in the business" as much as "on the business", you realize what a tremendous task this can become: for startups, some women are doing it all --- the work, the bookkeeping, the organizing, the record-keeping, the planning, and the big-level visionary thinking. That pace is unsustainable, and if you're in that position or you see it happening at your company, I highly recommend you find partners to assist you in the process. When good people work with each other --- when you have someone like a bookkeeper, accountant, tax advisor, attorney, insurance agent, financial advisor you can trust-- you free yourself and the leadership to focus much more on building the business and making it the best it can be.
With adequate knowledge, you will take on the challenge of starting and growing your business. We all have a chance to support each other. Let's work on this process together, make money, fill the world's needs, and create positive social change through our efforts to take care of the planet through our business ideas.
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