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QuickBooks Community 1st Birthday

The QuickBooks Online community is celebrating it's 1st Birthday in a couple of weeks which got us thinking...

 

Do you remember your first year of business and what advice would you give yourself if you could go back in time? 

 

We'd love to hear your top tips in the comments below for new businesses starting out that may help other community members!

 

 

(Want to weigh in but not yet a QB Community member? Click HERE to sign up in a flash!)

 

QB-Community-Birthday-01-v1.jpg

 

8 REPLIES 8
Established Community Backer ***

Re: QuickBooks Community 1st Birthday

If I could go back in time I would go back to the '70s in college and enrolled in some accounting classes. Engineers were not encouraged to diversify as much back then. What I learned over the years came from watching and doing and from the well written manuals that came with some early accounting software we adopted even before Quickbooks

Established Community Backer ***

Re: QuickBooks Community 1st Birthday

I help a lot of first timers around here, and the biggest three problems are:

 

1. Business thinking, a business owner needs to stop the I do this and that, and start thinking that the business does this and that.  Divorce your personal attitudes and traits, and run the business.

 

2. Basic accounting, everyone already knows accounting, what they do not know is the language accountants created (that is called job security).  And I do mean basic accounting, nothing fancy, fancy can be learned as you need it.  Handing it all off to an accountant, is about the same as saying here is my paycheck, do something with it.  If you do not know the basics how will you know if you are dealing with someone who does.  Always keep in mind, the lowest passing score is an accountant.

 

3. Cost, you do not make money by paying for things or services that you do not need, Need is different than want, learn that too.  Brand loyalty is a thing of the past, look for the best deals and do not be afraid to change sources.

Established Community Backer ***

Re: QuickBooks Community 1st Birthday


@Rustler wrote:

 

 

3. Cost, you do not make money by paying for things or services that you do not need, Need is different than want, learn that too.  Brand loyalty is a thing of the past, look for the best deals and do not be afraid to change sources.


Except maybe when it comes to your outside accountant. Certainly do not be afraid to change firms. We did so as we have been growing and and it has been a good change as we now deal with outside partners as well as investors.

 

But do be afraid to switch basic methodology, meaning the HOW you keep and record business activity. This is not a blatant plug for QB or even QBDT but changing software mid stream or mid year and without a solid backup of everything can lead to chaos.

 

Example, if you have some years of experience using QB Desktop don't switch to QBO just because your new tax accountant is a QBO only kind of guy. Or switch to Wave and then to Sage and back to QBO when they send you a coupon in the post.

 

Although for the brave, One-Write system with the carbon backing on checks that records the check as you hand write and the fold out 3 page front and back spreadsheet to fill in the data is an excellent, almost free (you already buy checks, just need the "write" ones). Not only does it improve your math skills since you have to use a calculator or adding machine (remember those) to total the columns it can serve as a training module before one jumps into real computer accounting (including but not limited to Excel). Yep, think of it as "paper excel"

Established Community Backer ***

Re: QuickBooks Community 1st Birthday


@john-pero wrote:

Except maybe when it comes to your outside accountant.

In my view, accountants are a commodity, just like a widget.  The difference is accountants talk, and they should, should be, explaining and helping you - you are paying them,  they work for you.  If you are not getting that from the present accountant - there are a lot of them out there, move on.

 

One way to find an accountant is to ask other small business owners who they use.  Watch carefully their expression when they hear the question, that will tell you what you need to know as to whether or not to explore that one further.  Disregard what they say, the initial expression says it all

Established Community Backer ***

Re: QuickBooks Community 1st Birthday

Hi QuickBooks Community,

 

My top tip for anyone starting a new company would be this - invest money and time in ensuring that you understand your numbers. It is very easy when you start a business for numbers to be flying around all over the place and you can soon loose track of where you are at. When I meet many business owners and I ask them 'how much profit did you make last month' they often cannot give me an answer. It is fundamental that you know where every single penny is going! What better way to keep track of this than QuickBooks Online?

 

Emily

Established Community Backer ***

Re: QuickBooks Community 1st Birthday


@EmilyMockett wrote:

Hi QuickBooks Community,

What better way to keep track of this than QuickBooks Online?

 

Emily


Desktop! That's my final answer, lol. 

 

Even an experienced accountant can sometimes run astray with profit. Our example, billed rent not yet paid inflates profit and even though accrual reporting is appropriate with outside investors, if you are looking to distribute quarterly profit to the investors you better hold back a reserve for uncollected rent or you will end up with a negative bank account. There is more to understanding profit than just the bottom line.

Established Community Backer ***

Re: QuickBooks Community 1st Birthday

Hi John,

 

Profit was just a common example that I used. I understand that this is not always the most important thing to some businesses. 

 

The problem with desktop is that you cannot access it from anywhere. Many clients I train like the fact that they can access their bookkeeping whilst on the go from anywhere they wish.

 

Kind Regards,

 

Emily

Established Community Backer ***

Re: QuickBooks Community 1st Birthday

QBDT plus a hosting plan is cheaper, less cost, than QBO and you still have control of your data, backups, and more functions.