Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Bookkeeping Basics: The Four Hallmarks



Author:  Resa Remus-Stariha, Bookkeeper

                Bookkeeping is the recording of a business’ everyday transactions.  Bookkeeping records the facts about a business for both internal and external use and are used to report the financial position of a company, track assets and liabilities, show income and expenses, and prepare taxes.  The four hallmarks of bookkeeping are:
               
1.       Relevance: Relevant information provides accurate feedback. It evaluates what is happening in the business which is crucial in decision-making.
2.       Reliability: Reliability represents the truthfulness and dependability of the information.  It means that this information can be verified. Remember: garbage in – garbage out.
3.       Consistency:  Sales, expenses and various other transactions should be entered into a bookkeeping system on a routine basis.  Consistency in entering data provides an accurate picture of where the business has been and where it is going.  A business owner will be able to quickly identify if expenditures are exceeding income and create a business plan toward profitability. 
4.       Comparability:  Comparability gives the company the ability to compare operations over years or over product lines.  It gives the user quality information to compare different companies, markets or time periods using the same standard.

A simple spreadsheet can be used for very basic records, however there are a myriad of programs that are available and not difficult to learn -QuickBooks and Peachtree are two of the preferred software packages utilized by small to medium size businesses to get more defined information.  Whichever method is chosen these ten basics need to be tracked:

1.  Cash
2.  Accounts Receivable
3.  Inventory
4.  Accounts Payable
5.  Loans Payable
6.  Sales
7.  Purchases
8.  Payroll Expenses
9.  Owners’ Equity
10. Retained Earnings

Applying the four hallmarks of bookkeeping to the ten items to be tracked is the key to accurate bookkeeping.  It should be noted that these hallmarks are interrelated, an example is: putting information into the system is both relevant and consistent.

1.       Relevant: Any information pertaining to the business should be entered into the chosen system and all documents filed on a timely basis. For the small business, set time aside weekly for this task. Have important files close at hand, older files can be stored elsewhere if space is at a premium.  Paperwork can accumulate quickly and become unmanageable or lost if not managed on a regular basis. How long to keep documents varies, it is important to maintain files for that prescribed time.  Check with your accountant for more details.
2.       Reliability:  Source documents should always be used for the correct amount of each transaction and filed. Keep all receipts and other source information.
3.       Consistency:  Be consistent in how you treat similar expenses and similar income.  One example is sales tax: Goods are most often taxable with some exemptions while services are generally exempt with a few exceptions. Having a policy handbook will eliminate any questions especially if more than one person is involved with maintaining the books.  Accounts should be reconciled on a monthly basis. 
4.       Comparability:  Evaluate the business on a routine basis through the financial statements:
a.       Income Statement: Evaluate revenues, expenses, gains, and losses.
b.      Balance Sheet: Evaluate assets, liabilities, and equity.
c.       Statement of Cash Flow: Evaluate cash sources and uses.

Bookkeeping is a basic necessity of every business.  Maintaining company books makes analyzing the business more accurate and tax preparation easier.  It is a vital practice to help understand your business.


Wednesday, July 16, 2014

July 31st Jill Salzman to Speak at Deer Park Country Club

Who is Jill Salzman?
Jill is a graduate of Brown University and law school after that, she started Paperwork Media LLC, a music management firm and her first entrepreneurial venture. She went on to create The Bumble Brand, LLC, to sell Bumble Bells, audible anklewear for the newest of human beings (she sold it in 2011.)Having built two successful companies, she launched The Founding Moms to connect mom entrepreneurs around the globe with one another.

A sought-after speaker, Jill has been featured in national media outlets including CNN’s Headline News, People Magazine, The Chicago Tribune, Daily Candy Kids, Business Matters, WGN TV and WAHM Talk Radio.  Her TED talk, Why Moms Make The Best Entrepreneurs, received rave reviews.  She was recently named one of the Top 50 Women To Watch In Tech and Top 100 Champion Small Business Influencer. Jill writes for NBC5′s small business blog, Inc. Well, and she’s been published in The New York Times and eHow.com.  She released her first book, Found It: A Field Guide for Mom Entrepreneurs, published on January 12, 2012 through Piggott Press. Orbit Media Studios named Jill one of the Best Chicago Marketing Speakers in 2014. She’s a co-host on the most entertaining business podcast in the world, Breaking Down Your Business. And she recently launched a Top Tips video series for entrepreneurs.
 

 

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Which Social Media Should You Be Using for Your Business

Seems like every day someone is telling you something new you can do on a social media platform or maybe they told you about another app that you should download on your smartphone or tablet.

Yes there are many apps and social media platforms that are available to download for free or for a small fee, but identifying which ones you should be using is another task. When people ask which social media platform they should be on, I ask them a few questions: Are you using any social platforms now? Tell me why you decided on that platform? What do you like/dislike about that platform. Now the answers do not tell you which ones to be on or not to be on, but it tells you alot about what a person may enjoy to do or doesn't like to do.

Trying out 2-3 social media platforms that you aren't already using is a great way to start identifying which ones to use. If you never try, you will never know.  I would try a new one every week for 3 weeks. You want to spend 1 day creating a profile and navigating around it. Then read up about best practices on that social media platform. Then during the next 5 days find 2 days use it actively. Do not go away from the social media platform when the 2nd week arrives and you try a new one. Take a day to set up the profile and navigate around it. Next day, once you had time to see the platform, again read about best practices and then try them out. I find that once you have the platform open and profile created it helps you to try out the best practices.

If you are not comfortable with learning new social media platforms or find yourself struggling, then do give yourself an extra week in between. I am young person, so 1 week seems doable since i grasp onto new things. Once you have been doing social media platforms 4-6 weeks(Or even during the first 4-6 weeks), but do not let 6 weeks go by before you ask another tech savy person about their review of social media platform or ask them for latest tips for using the platform better. Another person the ask are your customers. Which platforms do they use?

If you love taking photographs...you will enjoy Instagram
If you love reading articles or news....you will enjoy Twitter
If you enjoy the professional articles and keeping professional contacts in one spot...you will enjoy Linked in.
If you enjoy crafts and recipes...you will enjoy Pinterest

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

40 Under Forty of Bureau, LaSalle, Marshall, & Putnam Counties

Its getting closer to the time of the year and that we will soon be opening up the nomination form. Individuals to that have been nominated during the previous 3 years  come from a diverse background of education and career fields. They all have a unique story of why they are here contributing to the growth of our community. Each year we look for 40 new individuals. Below you will see the list of all the honorees from Class 2011, 2012 and  2013. The names are listed in alphabetical order:

First Name
Last Name
Class of
Julie
Ajster
2013
Procopio
Alfano
2012
Amanda
Andreoni
2011
Chris
Backos
2013
Matt
Baker
2011
Curt
Bedei
2011
Nate
Begly
2011
Deb
Bibula
2013
Josh
Biros
2013
Todd
Bogatitus
2011
Katie
Bonner
2013
Dexter
Brigham
2012
Karen
Brodbeck
2011
Jared
Brodbeck
2012
Jeffrey
Brodbeck
2013
Chad
Brokaw
2013
Matthew
Bullock
2013
Jennifer
Bunker
2012
Cody
Burroughs
2013
Keenan
Campbell
2013
Brian
Carnes
2011
Dr. Brett
Casanova
2011
Jason
Cavanaugh
2011
Kelley
Cawley-Salazar
2011
Kelly
Cole
2013
Jeff
Cook
2012
Gina
Czubachowski
2011
Annette
Davis
2011
Spencer
Davis
2011
Meridith
Donahue
2013
Kevin
Donnell
2013
Dr. Jeff
Dzik
2012
Jordan
Ellena
2012
Michael
Ellis
2011
Jeffrey
Ellis
2011
Kane
Farabaugh
2013
Dan
Farrell
2013
Nick
Fascetta
2011
Richard
Fiocchi, Jr.
2011
Tony
Fiorentini
2012
Kelly
Frasco
2013
Kim
Frey
2013
Jacob
Frost
2011
Vince
Gatza
2011
Brian
Gift
2012
Janette
Glupczynski
2013
Mark
Grzybowski
2011
Heather
Hammitt
2013
Dale
Hansen
2012
Amy
Hasty
2013
Robb
Hasty
2013
AJ
Hauser
2011
Wendy
Hawkins
2012
Ross
Hawley
2013
JC
Heerdt
2013
Greg
Hoffman
2011
Tammy
Humpage
2013
Andy
Hurst
2011
Leah
Inman
2012
Dana
Jennings
2011
Tim
Karth
2013
Heather
Kaszynski
2013
Kelly
Klobucher
2011
Kim
Koehler
2012
Douglas
Kramarsic
2011
Chadd
Kreofsky
2011
Rachel
Krug
2013
Justin
Lamboley
2012
Steven W.
Lamis
2012
Jennifer
Leifheit
2013
Ryan
Leifheit
2013
James
Less
2012
Drew
McConville
2011
John
McCormick
2011
Tara
Melissa
2012
Nathan
Miller
2012
Rob
Mounts
2012
Monica
Near
2013
TJ
Nelson
2012
Travis
Nelson
2012
James
Opsal
2013
Jeremy E.
Palm
2012
Ted
Parisot
2012
Doug
Patterson
2012
Chris
Peterson
2013
Neil
Pleskovitch
2011
Nick
Pyszka
2013
Dave
Rabideau
2011
Jennifer
Radtke (Debo)
2012
Matt
Ramer
2012
Josh
Reck
2013
Troy
Resetich
2011
Mike
Richetta
2011
Brian
Riley
2012
Brianne
Riley (Hougas)
2011
Charlie
Riva
2011
Kayla
Samolinski
2013
Dr. Wendy
Sanders-Maubach
2012
Ben
Schmitt
2013
James
Schrader
2013
Jon
Shapiro
2013
Meg
Skelly
2011
Matt
Skelly
2012
John
Solon
2013
Shannon
Stevens
2012
Dana
Stillwell
2012
TJ
Templeton
2013
Andrew
Terry
2012
Kyle
Thornsbrough
2012
Chad
Thrasher
2012
Michael
Topielec
2012
Donald
Trager
2011
Sarah
Trager (Glascock)
2011
Tara
Van De Wyngaerde
2012
Niki
Vanduzer
2013
Michelle
Vasquez
2011
Geoff
VeZain
2013
Derek
Vicich
2012
Brad
Vogelgesang
2012
Trisha
Walzer
2013
Alison
Wasmer
2013
Luke
Weiden
2011
Stephanie
Williams
2013
Drew
Wilson
2013
Scott
Wollack
2011
Michael
Wollack
2012
Megan
Zomboracz-Cullinan
2013
Abby
Zukowski
2012