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Mindset Matters in Finance – Step 1

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5 Steps to Take Control of Your Business Finances – Step 1

By: Shane Bender

Do you desire to take control of your business finances? Don’t we all? Are you looking for ways to improve?

If so, over the next few weeks, I am going to discuss 5 steps to take control of your business finances.

Step 1: Develop a Positive Financial Mindset

Why would I start with this first?

Because it can make all the difference.

As a former auditor and Controller, I have been trained to be cynical. My job was to look for risks and financial control weaknesses. Many times I had to devise processes and procedures to prevent people from stealing, manipulating numbers, and committing fraud. Over time, this made me start thinking the worst of people instead of the best. Not necessarily a fun path to go on.

I remember people telling me that I was a pessimist and I would argue that I am a realist. Even though I probably have a long way to go before I would be considered an optimist by many, I do think this below quote is true.

“Positive Thinking Will Let You Do Everything Better Than Negative Thinking Will.”  – Zig Ziglar

Empowering Thoughts vs. Disempowering Thoughts

When it comes to business finances, there seems to be an abundance of disempowering thoughts. I am guessing that the following statements could be part of the cause of so many business failures.

  1. I don’t know accounting.
  2. I am not good at technology.
  3. I don’t have the time for finances.
  4. I am not a numbers person.
  5. I will hire someone to do this when I can afford it.
  6. It’s too complicated.
  7. I need to close business and will worry about this later.

What if we had these more empowering thoughts related to business finances?

  1. I can learn and understand the basics to help my business be more profitable.
  2. Technology can be learned, and it is getting easier. Google is my friend, and I can many times find the answer if I just search.
  3. I have to take the time to sharpen my skills because this will increase my productivity and profitability.
  4. The math is not difficult, and I have a calculator or spreadsheet to help.
  5. I want to know enough to provide anyone I hire with direction and guidance. This will ensure I am getting the most of the services I am paying for.
  6. I will practice the KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) method as much as possible.
  7. Revenue is important but not at the expense of everything else.

Check out more in a post I wrote a couple of months ago called  “5 Financials Excuses Business Owners Make”.

Thought Exercises

I am not an expert in this area but can tell you that there is some value in changing your thoughts. This is really not anything new. There is something powerful in what we verbally say to ourselves. For example, Zig Ziglar provides self-talk cards to change your mental thinking. Also, Noah St. John, in his book “Afformations” goes even further to state that you need to take any affirming statement such as, “I make wise financial decisions in my business” to “Why do I make wise financial decisions?” He states that the brain can better handle a question and that your subconscious will work at answering these questions.

Finally, the Bible has a lot to say about the power of our words. The word “tongue” shows up 110 times in the New American Standard Bible. The verses mainly talk about the power of our words on others and even on yourself.

Thinking is Not Everything

Before some of you think I have gone off the deep end, I want to clarify that a positive mental mindset alone is not going to make your business profitable. You do need to take action.

The below quote expresses my thoughts on this.

Let’s be clear: If you want to get results, you will have to do something. You will have to take action. I’m not one of those teachers who says, “Just think about money and the money will start pouring in! Ah, no – it won’t.” – Noah St. John

Now you are asking, what is the action?

Next week, we will discuss one of the most important actions for your business – Implement a Revenue Plan. Because much of what you do it in business starts with revenue, and it is essential for you to even have a business.