NCET Biz Tips: Financial management essentials

Effective financial management is the linchpin of success for small businesses, requiring a holistic approach that encompasses various crucial aspects. Among these, budgeting stands out as the cornerstone, providing a roadmap that outlines projected income and expenses. Regularly reviewing and updating budgets is imperative to adapt to changes in the market, industry, or business operations.

Cash flow management is another vital component. Maintaining a positive cash flow ensures the smooth functioning of day-to-day operations. This involves monitoring the inflow and outflow of funds, preventing liquidity crises, and allowing businesses to capitalize on growth opportunities. Without robust cash flow management, businesses may find themselves unable to meet immediate financial obligations, hindering overall operational efficiency.

Monitoring and financial analysis are essential practices for small businesses. Regular scrutiny of financial statements, including income statements, balance sheets, and cash flow statements, provides invaluable insights into the financial health of the business. Financial analysis helps identify trends, areas of improvement, and potential risks, enabling informed decision-making for sustainable growth.

Contingency planning is an often overlooked but crucial aspect of financial management. Small businesses face uncertainties such as economic downturns, industry changes, or unexpected expenses. Establishing contingency plans helps businesses prepare for unforeseen events, ensuring they can weather financial storms. This may involve creating an emergency fund or having access to credit facilities, providing a safety net in times of crisis.

Debt management is another critical consideration. While taking on debt can facilitate business expansion, it requires careful planning and monitoring. Small businesses should evaluate the cost of debt, plan repayment schedules, and avoid excessive borrowing that could strain cash flow. Effective debt management contributes to long-term financial stability, preventing the accumulation of unsustainable financial burdens.

Efficient tax planning is vital for navigating the complexities of taxation. Small businesses must understand tax regulations, take advantage of available deductions and credits, and ensure compliance with tax laws. Seeking professional advice can optimize the business’s tax position, potentially leading to significant savings and improved financial outcomes.

Inventory management is particularly relevant for businesses dealing with physical products. Striking the right balance in stock levels is critical – overstocking ties up capital, while understocking can lead to lost sales. Implementing efficient inventory management practices ensures optimal levels, minimizing holding costs, and maximizing profitability.

A strategic pricing strategy is equally important for small businesses. Setting the right prices for products or services requires a delicate balance. Prices should cover costs, provide a reasonable profit margin, and remain competitive in the market. Regularly reassessing pricing strategies in response to market dynamics is essential for sustained profitability and competitiveness.

The role of accounting cannot be overstated in the context of effective financial management. Accounting serves as the backbone, ensuring accurate record-keeping, compliance with regulations, and providing a basis for informed decision-making. Small businesses that incorporate sound accounting practices into their financial management strategies enhance their overall financial health, fostering adaptability in the dynamic business landscape. Additionally, leveraging technology is essential for efficiency. Implementing accounting software, financial management systems, and payment processing solutions can streamline processes, improve accuracy, and provide real-time insights into the financial health of the business.

Join NCET on Wednesday, Feb. 21 for a Biz Café presentation by Greater Nevada Credit Union and its special guest panel on the crucial aspects of Managing Finances and Cash Flow for your business. GNCU will have experts in accounting, taxation, and business banking to share their wealth of knowledge, offering practical tips and strategies to optimize your financial management. Bring your questions for the open floor Q&A during the presentation.

The event will take place at The Abbi Agency, 1385 Haskell St. in Reno. For information, go to https://www.ncet.org/ncet-event-calendar/biz-cafe-gncu-panel

NCET is a member-supported nonprofit organization that produces educational and networking events to help people explore business and technology.

Facilitators:

• Stephanie Arroyo is the business development manager and certified credit union financial counselor (CCUFC) at Greater Nevada Credit Union. With more than a decade of experience ranging from residential lending, branch management, and business banking she is a leader in the industry. Arroyo also is the president of the Board of Directors for the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Northern Nevada.

• Chris Holland is a commercial business development specialist and Certified Credit Union Financial Counselor (CCUFC) at Greater Nevada Credit Union. Most recently, he managed the business relationships for their Carson City partners including Carson Tahoe Health, Western Nevada College and the State of Nevada.

Guest Panel:

• Jamie Skinner is a consulting controller and CFO who empowers businesses to scale sustainably serving clients locally and across the U.S., in various industries including healthcare, fitness, auto dealerships, technology, construction, restaurants and non-profits. Skinner earned her CPA license from the state of CA and received her MBA from the University of Nevada, Reno.

• Kristin Stowe is the commercial services manager at Greater Nevada Credit Union. With 17 years in the financial industry, Stowe is also an Accredited Cannabis Banking Professional who has been instrumental in guiding GNCU’s cannabis banking efforts.

• Special Guest from the State of Nevada Department of Taxation.