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    5 common small business myths

    You need to stop believing today

    Hannah | Oneflare

    When you start your own business, it can be easy to fall into the trap of believing in myths. From bookkeeping to customer service, there are plenty out there – and some of them seem true enough to take seriously. The problem with this? They can steer your business in the wrong direction.

    Put simply, it’s about time SMEs stopped spinning so many plates – especially when some plates aren’t worth the time. Here are five small business myths you need to stop believing.

    Myth 1: Bookkeeping is just about the numbers

    It’s a common myth that bookkeeping is a numbers game. While it’s true that numbers do have a big part to play, it’s actually much more than this. Essentially, a bookeeper is responsible for organising and storing accounting and financial documents such as statements, income tax records, ledgers and journals.

    Source: NSW

    In fact, there are many skills that a good bookkeeper needs to help keep a business afloat that goes beyond being savvy with numbers. Discipline, good communication and a high level of organisation are required. They also need to have a solid understanding of the bigger picture, which means, knowing how expenses or new staff hires will impact the business six or 12 months down the track.

    Proper bookkeeping makes it easier to fulfill tax obligations, analyse and manage finances, make plans for the business, and abide by the law. Consult with a local bookkeeper for some professional advice.

    Myth 2: Be active on all social media platforms

    For small businesses, it’s important to be active on social media. However, it’s equally as important to be active on the right platforms in the right way.

    The truth is, being present on every single platform can be overkill. While it might seem easy to use software tools to publish your content automatically across several channels, what works on Facebook doesn’t necessarily work on Twitter or LinkedIn.

    Take extra time to optimise your content for each platform. Think about the tone, angle and word length of each post, making sure it’s appropriate for your different audiences. Do your research and find out where your customers are having promising conversations and narrow your presence to where this is happening.

    Myth 3: You should be working all the time

    Running a small business will certainly keep you busy. It often feels like there is so much to do and so little time to do it. So we overwork ourselves to keep on top of things. However, everyone is human – and everyone needs a break.

    Need proof? It’s actually scientifically proven that prioritising your breaks at work will make you happier, more focused and more productive. Taking breaks gives our brains a much-needed rest, allowing us to get back to our tasks with renewed energy and focus. They also relax our brains, helping us retain information and make valuable connections, as well as reevaluate our goals.

    Simply put, making time for breaks equals making time for your business.

    Myth 4: Voluntary administration is the end of your business

    While some people might see it as an extreme action, voluntary administration can be a smart move. The truth is, when your business is in a sticky situation where debts can’t be paid, restructuring your operations, creditors and assets is a way of potentially improving your financial position.

    The aim of voluntary administration (VA) is always to get a business back to financial health if possible, or to make sure that creditors get a better return than if the business was liquidated.

    If you’re up against the wall, going into VA can give your business breathing space, as an external administrator takes control of your business while its finances can be reviewed. It’s a simple process, and contrary to what some people believe, can help your business get back on track.

    Contact local bookkeepers

    Myth 5: The customer is always right

    There’s no denying that customers are crucial to your business. However, it’s important to balance their needs with yours and your employees’ needs too. Here are three instances when the customer is actually wrong:

    • When they make you or your staff unhappy
      Nobody deserves abuse. Sometimes customers get angry and expect people to be held accountable. However, if you know you or your employee to be right, it’s best to hold your ground. 
    • When they’re bad for business
      If a customer is disrespectful for absolutely no reason – it’s better to let them go. It shouldn’t be a matter of finances, especially if it’s causing you or your staff unnecessary trouble.
    • When they’re not worth it
      Some customers simply aren’t valuable to your business, particularly if they’re giving your staff trouble time and time again. Instead, it’s better to focus on customers that deserve your services and are willing to work with you.

    Be a small business myth buster

    Sometimes it can be tricky to figure out myth from reality. While busting myths is something you’ll naturally do when running a SME, it’s always helpful to know what to believe and what to dismiss before going in.

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