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Understanding Your Business Finances: A Book Review

January 16th, 2015 by

Make sure you have a sound understanding of just how important your finances are when setting out in business…

Johnny’s book, Understanding Your Business Finances, does exactly what it says on the tin. It is, essentially, a walk-through guide to setting up the financial side of your business – regulating cash flow, reporting profit and loss, and figuring out a balance sheet all crop up in chapter one.Johnny Martin knows his financial stuff. He knows what’s required to get a business off the ground and keep it there. He knows the best practice approach to make the most from your investment. He knows just how important the little things are in the financial side of business. Do you?

Starting a business can be a really testing experience. Regardless of whether or not your product should fly off the shelves, there’s a whole load of hurdles that you’ll have to clear just to get going, and the financial bits and bobs can be pretty tough hurdles to vault.

So, why is Understanding Your Business Finances a must-read for all budding entrepreneurs?

Johnny’s book isn’t written for the experts, it’s written for the people starting out. Many finance and accounting books can be heavy reads, and that’s just what Johnny is trying to avoid. Covering business models, financing your business and sales forecasting, Understanding Your Business Finances has everything you need to get you on your feet in business without leaving you in the deep end! The book allows you to put your skills into practice with interactive activities included at the close of each chapter.

The book comes as a welcome aid at a time when more people than ever are setting out in business. Over the past two years alone, UK2 partner Start Up Loans has lent out over £100 million to nearly 23,000 businesses, all of whom needed financial help to get started. The book is a perfect compliment to those just starting out as its structure allows you to walk through your finances step by step. By the time you reach the closing page you’ll be much better equipped to responsibly channel your funding into the important areas of your new business.

We caught up with Johnny to hear all about how you could get the most out of Understanding Your Business Finance. Here’s what he had to say…

  1. What were your main reasons for writing Understanding Your Business Finance?

To pass on as much knowledge as possible so as to boost people’s confidence; to encourage them believe that if they can drive a car they can do this stuff. Hopefully the book will give them confidence to trust their guts and keep asking until they are happy. The book is kept simple – if someone can’t explain it clearly, they probably don’t really know it themselves! And you know, despite the best attempts of generations of accountants there are just three things you need to do: track income and expenses, watch the cash flow and know what is due to the business and what it owes.

  1. How can small business owners/potential entrepreneurs get the most out of Understanding Your Business Finances – do you see certain chapters as more relevant to SMEs?

The best plan that I can advise is to work through from start to finish. Each chapter has a big idea and then a checklist at the end, so you can put what you’ve learned into practice. It builds steadily and assumes no prior knowledge, and so those who are just getting started should find it incredibly useful.

  1. If you could give one piece of advice to budding entrepreneurs, what would it be?

Everyone says have a cash flow and write a business plan, which is correct. My top tip though would be to make sure you develop a financial routine. Every Friday morning, put your factory manager hat on (even in a creative business), make a brew and go through the financial side of your business  – who owes you money, what’s to be invoiced, what contracts/agreements are to be documented, where can you save money etc.

Remember: Ryanair cut out the lemons in their Gin & Tonic – they saved £50k.  And if finance is stressing you or you really are in a hole – believe me there is always a solution; the faster you face up to it and talk it through with someone the better.

You can buy the book for just £19.99 here, or click here to find out more about finding funding for your business.

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