The Business Olympics


Hello and a warm welcome to the latest blog post. I'm sure now that the Olympics are over we will all be reverting back to our normal television programmes or finding something else to do with our free time. I have in fact found the time to do some thinking and I've been thinking about the comparisons between the Olympics and Business. With every competitor or business owner it all started somewhere, from a family member, a dream, a friend, a passion, a talent or just falling upon it by chance. For me well I know exactly where it all started and that is from my love of maths or more specifically numbers. I developed my love of numbers at a very early age and I was reminded of this when recently I bumped into one of my old primary school teachers at my local church treasure hunt. She was in no way surprised when I told her that I had wound up starting my own accountancy practice, in fact she told me that it was clear from as young as five or six that I would have a career involving numbers. 

We'll focus on numbers throughout this post, thinking again about the Olympics and the importance of numbers there, whether it be the position, placing, time, distance or score. Position or placing is the only one that really matters to the athlete's, well unless of course your Usain Bolt and it's all about breaking records. The disappointment was etched on his face at the end of the 200m final, but this only really lasted a few moments as the reality sunk in that he had just won yet another gold. Comparing this to the numbers in a business, I'm sure the only one that really matters to a business owner deep down is profit. Whilst many people or clients I speak to are often more concerned with the amount of tax they are paying. The profit figure is the one that determine's everything else whether your business is doing well and pushing for medals or if it is faltering and knocking over that dreaded bar on the high jump which I hated so much at school. I'm sure many of my old classmate's will tell you that I often decided just to run straight through the bar rather than even attempt to jump over it. I knew from then that the high jump was never going to be my talent no matter how hard I tried. 

The next comparison I derive between the Olympics and Business is planning and preparation. While Olympic athlete's go through three to four years of hard training and a strict diet plan all for that one opportunity to perform, business owners also go through their own planning and preparation before they actually get started, they do market research or talk to their family and friends. They get a business plan prepared and a projected cash flow to make sure they can survive those initial few years. It's at this stage the person thinking of getting started in business should approach an accountant and get some advice about the structure of their business. Why would you not avail of our offer of a free initial consultation and get some free professional advice? I know the planning I went through before I decided to give up the steady income of a full time job in search of my childhood ambition of running my own business. I crunched number after number working out how much I needed to live on each month, what it would cost me to run my business each month and then getting to how much I needed to make each month just to get by and live on the bread line. Of course once you actually decide to jump into the world of self employment there are always those initial costs that you didn't quite plan for in your budget and whilst they throw you off for a month or two, somehow you find a way to get by because your doing what your passionate about and living your dream. 

Finally the last comparison I've been thinking of whether in the Olympics or in business is competition. Some competitors will do whatever it takes to win, whether it be pushing your opponent in the back during the race to force him off balance, taking some performance enhancing drugs or just simply running your business down. My thoughts and actions around this are quite simply not to worry about the competition and just to focus on the things I do best, and I like to think what I do best is provide a high level of customer service to my clients. We offer site visits so there is no inconvenience to our clients because we know what it's like to run a business and quite often it's not possible to factor in travel time when time already becomes stretched because of an issue with a supplier or a member of staff or something like your till breaking down. All factors that bring us back to costs or numbers in their original form. 

So with all that being said when it comes to numbers, our number is the only one you need! Until the next post, wishing you good health and good business