As a solopreneur one of the things that takes me extra effort are the administrative issues related to money.
I was talking to a friend of mine who is CFO for a medium size business. I had to admit I wasn’t really sure what he actually does. I know CFOs are responsible for company budgets and financial oversight. But what do CFOs actually DO? And how can you apply that to your business?
What Do CFOs Do?
At the core of their roles and responsibilities, CFO’s make sure that the fiscal operations of the organization operate appropriately. This is done through implementing the right processes and controls.
Processes and controls can sound overwhelming but by focusing on them individually and breaking them out into simple steps you can set your company up for success.
An easy way to create your process, and write it down, is by using a flowchart template.
In companies with employees, a process map (the flow chart) takes into account everyone involved. If you are like me and you are the only person in your company, vendors and clients are the other people in your process flow.
To get you processes out of your head and onto to paper, pick the most recent thing you did that you repeat regularly. Then start brain dumping.
This is a very simple example:
Step 1. Invoice Client
• Follow up 14 days later
• Follow up 7 days later
Step 2. Receive Invoice Payment
• Record in Freshbooks
Step 3. Deposit Check and separate into Appropriate Accounts
• Set aside Accountant recommended amount for taxes
• Write Personal Paycheck
• Place remaining funds in account used for business expenses and operations
After you write out differnt processes a few times creating process flows will become easier.
I save the processes I write out in a folder on my computer that is only for process flows. I have a goal to eventually creatr an operating manual for my company.
Why Create Process Flow for Your Business?
You might still be wondering why am I talking about this and why do you even need to write our your processes if your company is just you.
Reason 1. Having processes to follow will reduce the the emotional tug of war with the tasks you don’t want to do.
In the example above, the process incudes following up with a client until payment is received. That’s not a fun task, but by following the processes I don’t have to think about it.
Collecting payment for my services is just following the steps on a process map.
Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to automate the tasks that you procrastinate the most?
Reason 2. Just like with an assmbly line, repetition of processes increases the speed that tasks get things done.
Increasing the speed that you complete routine tasks means freeing up time to accomplish more. The more you can standardize your to-dos the more time you will have ro work on other things.
Reason 3. If you are anything like me, it’s easy to let unexpected free time in your day get away from you resulting in nothing productive getting done.
Having processes prepared helps reduce wasting found time. You can follow the process steps without having to put a lot of thought into the activity.
Reason 4. Imagine if one day your company is more then just you. What if you eventually are able to hire a virtual assistant or team member?
Having your processes written down and ready for them will make much easier and quicker for your new hire to integrate into your businesses. It will save learn curve time and allow them to be effective that much faster.
Creating process flow maps for your business can be done using simple flow charts. Having your process writen down will allow you to standardize your tasks.
Standardizing tasks helps reduce the amount of time they take to complete, reduces the emotional icky that comes from some must do items and prepares your company for growth.
Using existing templates makes the process less overwhelming and easier to implement.
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