There’s a Reason “Success” is Part of Succession Planning

If your business does not have a succession plan, you need to get started on one right away.

I really don’t mean to scare you, but plain and simply put, every business ought to have a succession plan. If you are under the impression you don’t need one because you’re not planning to make any changes in ownership any time soon … well, I understand you’re thinking. While you may be years away from retirement or a sale of your company, something else may happen, such as an unforeseen accident, or even worse, your death.

Our Lord and maker is the only one who decides that, of course, but you get my point. Who knows what the future holds – and if you do not want your company falling into the hands of someone who may not be able to lead – then you need to get busy creating your succession plan.

How to Create the Plan

A succession plan can be as simple as a one-page, short narrative describing whom the company goes to if the owner retires or leaves. Nothing fancy is needed, but what’s imperative is that those named in the document actually know your wishes. The last thing anyone wants to endure is a surprise; one day you’re the CFO, and the next you’re the CEO.

You need to define the roles of anyone mentioned in the succession plan and have some kind of order to succession that is a good fit with your customer or client base. For example, you may have someone who is great at sales but lousy at leading; you wouldn’t want to put this person in the CEO position.

Visit with everyone mentioned in the plan to make sure they are on board and update the document regularly, in case someone else leaves or other circumstances change. You’ll be glad you did.

Special Situations – After All, We’re Only Human

I’ve seen it happen time and time again. You’re dealing with humans who have real emotions, some who expect they’ll be in the plan only to find out they’ve been excluded. Consider these two special situations:

Family-Owned Businesses – This is where real friction occurs, especially between family members whose egos get the better of them. For example, there are three sons who all think they are your natural successor, but only one can take over. You might consider joint CEOs, but I’ve found even that rarely works due to differing opinions on how to run the company. The bottom line is to choose the son who is the best fit in terms of leading the company for the foreseeable future. The outcome will be difficult for the other two sons, but make it clear as to the “why” behind your decision.

No One Makes Sense – You may be in a situation where no one currently in the company is suitable to take the reins. This certainly happens. If this is the case, look outside your company and begin having conversations with other business owners and professionals to find the right person. You may bring that person on full time, or in a consulting/advisory role.

Don’t ignore succession planning! I’d be more than glad to visit with you to help you wrap your arms around succession planning. My door is always open, so give me a call or email me and we’ll meet.

QuickBooks Desktop to QuickBooks Online Conversion: Just a Leap of Faith Away to Big Benefits

A lot of us think that QuickBooks Desktop and QuickBooks Online (QBO) are one in the same, but that’s not exactly the case.

Sure, they do the same thing, but they are on two very different platforms; QBO takes you places (literally!), proving the bridge to unlock untapped potential and the ability to take your business to the next level. For many of our clients and friends of the firm, converting to the online version is a real leap of faith – and, of course, we are all human and somewhat resistant to change. However, not moving online will leave you behind the curve.

So, let’s get into some of the reasons to make the conversion, and advice to get you there.

Go With a Professional

The best advice in making the conversion is to go with a professional. QuickBooks tends to make things easy for you, and yes, you can do the conversion yourself, but that doesn’t mean you should.

Doing it yourself can be quite costly due to the potential for lost information and data, changes in categories, and bad reconciliation. Any one of these mistakes can cause a lot of heartache coming in – and money going out. If that’s not enough, the amount of time and learning curve for you to do it yourself is hefty, and takes you away from doing what you do best: running your business.

At Sound Business Services, we have done many conversions, and have the experience and knowledge to make your conversion a seamless one. Don’t hesitate to contact us today with any questions or to get started.

Fantastic QBO Features

You’ve probably heard me discuss the benefits and features of QBO, but they truly are too big to ignore.

In an always-on world where our clients – and ourselves – are constantly on the go, QBO provides us the ability to serve our customers and clients like never before. Through anytime, anywhere access in the cloud, you can securely collaborate, share and sync files and information in real time. That means we can work with you at your convenience from any place you desire, and provide you the data and solutions you need in real time, walking you through any situation or scenario. And, being in the cloud, there are no more versions to update and you’ll have far less paper to deal with due to online data entry.

This process provides two of the biggest benefits of all: time and money. With the combination of QBO and our help to onboard, you will be able to change the way you work, enjoy powerful results in your business, and focus on running your business and watching it grow.

Amazing Apps

The power of QBO is booming in its app ability. There are hundreds of great cloud-based apps that integrate with QBO for virtually any function or project. According to Intuit, the average small business owner uses 18 apps to run his or her business every day!

Yet, with so many apps to choose from, it’s important to get the ones you need most and not overload yourself with too many. Some of our favorites include Bill.com, Receipt Bank and many more, but, of course, Sound Business Services will work with you to get you the apps that best fit your specific needs and requirements.

QBO is Constant Improving 

Even with such a great software like QBO and all of the benefits it provides, Intuit does a superb job of listening to its customers’ feedback and constantly improving its product.

Staying on top of the cutting edge, and looking to deliver on your suggestions and customer experience, enhancements are coming to QBO customers every month. Just a few include cash flow insights, invoice tracking, quicker and easier QBO setup, and an accurate P&L that you can see anytime you desire on your homepage, as well as more accurate budgeting, new QuickBooks categories to take control of your inventory and sales, sales form customization to transform your personal brand and improve your sales tracking, and so much more.

We are Here to Help 

As you can see, making the leap to QBO is a no-brainer, but doing so without a professional can be a nightmare. No need to worry … Sound Business Services is here to help!

We will start with a needs assessment to discover the features you need from QuickBooks Desktop and QBO to elevate your particular business. From there, we will look for the apps that we can bring into play to connect with QBO and improve your business dramatically. And, of course, our experienced team will work through all the intricate details, such as making sure the target count for a QuickBooks Desktop file is under 350,000 targets (the number of detail, or split, lines on a transaction), to provide you a seamless conversion experience.

After the conversion is complete, we will run a balance sheet and P&L on an accrual basis for all dates to make sure they match, and you will be on your way to a smarter, sounder and more successful business. Contact us today for more information on conversion.