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To Win the Game – You must win the 3rd Quarter

Following on from our “Half Time” coach’s Pep-Talk in our December blog, here are some suggestions for you to make the most of January 2019:

Over the holiday break – or as soon as you get back to work with your team, ask yourself these four simple questions:

  • What worked well over the last six months?
  • What didn’t work so well over the last six months?
  • What have we learned?
  • What is the focus?

The 3rd quarter (January to March) is very important from a business-owners perspective because you will have a number of issues to deal with, namely:

  • Post-holiday lag – where everybody takes a while to settle back in and you may unconsciously slow down and under-achieve;
  • This post-holiday lag includes your customers – so you may be struggling for orders from them as well – which may adversely affect your cash flow;
  • Big Tax bills coming up in February and April (the December BAS isn’t due till the end of February…and the 2018 income tax bill is due in April, along with the 2019 PAYG quarterly tax in advance is also due in April, plus if you are paying your employee tax monthly…you’ll have one due in January, and March too;
  • On top of all that, you may have spent big over Christmas, and taken the family on holiday.

All of this will come home to roost in February, and you may still be struggling with the cash flow hit when the April tax bills come along.

The only antidote to this post-holiday lag is FOCUS.

  • Concentrate on doing what you did well in the six months prior – maximise your efforts in this area
  • Fix whatever isn’t working well – or put a plan in place to fix it asap
  • Use what you have learned, to plan ahead and not repeat the same mistakes next year
  • Focus on the most important things first, such as:
    • Finishing any work in progress (so you can invoice it)
    • Chasing up quotes (so you can invoice them)
    • Hitting up new leads – and planning the workflow for the coming six months (so you can onboard the clients and invoice them)
    • Working out how much tax you have to pay…and when it is due
    • Shoring up the cash flow

That last point is a doozy.   We try to get as many tax returns done as possible by Christmas time, so you know what tax bills you have coming up (both the 2018 tax bill and the likely PAYG due in February and April).  If you haven’t had your tax returns done yet, hurry up – so you can put the money away…or talk to the bank to get some help.   Prior planning always helps you get the loan.   Don’t leave it until the problem lands on your lap to call the bank.

Utilise your team to help you with the first 3 points, you may need some help from your accountant to work out the tax and cash flow planning side of things.   Get into it early…you will give yourself a much better chance of success.

Don’t slow down and under-achieve, just because it is quiet at the moment.

 


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