The last week I've spent a lot of time thinking about the human condition. What's gotten us to the point where in North America it's more common to spend time with our work families than our spouses or children, where it's common to feel that we are somehow lacking or imperfect if we don't make it all work, especially at the right price, at the right billing rate and of course do it as well as all the rest of the people in our field.
The human condition is such that pain and effort are not just symptoms which can be removed without changing life itself; they are the modes in which life itself, together with the necessity to which it is bound, makes itself felt. For mortals, the easy life of the gods would be a lifeless life. - Hannah Arendt
Honestly, I'm not totally sure what Hannah is saying here but I think she means that without pain and effort life would be meaningless in a way. I would agree, it is through experiencing our pain and through our efforts that we can enjoy what we earn! That doesn't mean that we have to suffer for it though. She also said that she likes to prepare for the worst, hope for the best and accept what is, which for me, brings in a little Buddhist teaching of non-attachment!
So in the realm of business, what this means for me is work smart and remember that part of the reason I work is to support my family (including the fur covered ones) and so that I can travel, volunteer, spend time in nature, buy cute clothes... you get the picture right? So working smart, means using tools like Chata.AI that I introduced in my blog post last week where I talked about how to determine who your top and bottom 5 customer/clients are
This week the love affair continues. The little green robot that is the mascot for Chata.Ai is super cute ! I downloaded the app on my iPhone so now I can query my data on the run. I have to say, for me maybe not the best move because I'm trying to keep my work at work but I do highly recommend it for anyone that is working out in the field because it works like a charm!
This week's query to help you work smarter is to ask what your top and bottom 5 product/services are. Are you sensing a theme yet? Financial literacy for your business means you need to know what's going on in your business. And that means being aware of how your business is doing, not just in total, but in detail too. QuickBooks Online lets you post by service item, then Chata.Ai lets you quickly and easily query your data.
You can see it doesn't have to be pretty, or capitalized. It does take a bit of practice to learn, but that's what I'm here for! So, if you have products instead of services, you would type products instead of services, if you have both, you would run the query twice so that you know both. If you are not using invoices or sales receipts to record your income, and just recording income directly from deposits in the bank feed, this query will not work for you. Don't despair, we will cover queries for you in another blog post! You just have a different type of business.
So, now you know your top and bottom products/services. Similar to your top and bottom clients, you can now make good decisions with this information. Do you scrap badly performing products/services? Are they taking up too much of your time/resources for the amount of revenue that comes in? For the amount of stress they cause? How much more revenue could you generate if you increased your prices by 5% on your top performing items or added 5% in sales on them and what would it take to do that? See how having this type of easily generated information allows you to be laser focused on information that moves your business forward by leaps and bounds!
Until next week. Go and be unstoppable!
The Holistic Accountant