If you’re preparing to launch a new business, there’s nothing more important than ensuring that the numbers add up. In business, the reality is that you could have the best ideas, the best team, and the best products, but all that matters is the numbers. At the end of the day, if you can’t make your company profitable, it’s going to crumble. No matter how much hard work goes into a venture, if you can’t solve that equation, you won’t be successful. If you’re a new business owner hoping to take the world by storm, here are some tips to help you get to grips with the figures

Be realistic

Setting up a business is not an alien concept. Thousands of new companies are formed every year. The opportunities are abundant, but don’t let this lull you into a false sense of security. Programs like Dragon’s Den and The Apprentice may make it look relatively easy to make a go of it in business, but the reality of the situation is that it’s hard work to get a company off the ground. Even a small-scale venture can come with significant cost, and it’s best to have a realistic idea of the numbers from the outset. How much will you need to get up and running? What costs will you incur at the beginning? How are you going to fund the business? What kinds of profit margins are you hoping for? All of these are questions you’ll need to find answers for, and the sooner you can do it, the better. If you don’t have savings or investors on board, consider how you’re going to finance your plans. Once you’ve solved this quandary, move onto the long-term. It’s not enough to have plans in place for the first six months. You’ll need to think carefully about what will happen after you’ve used the initial cash injection.

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Be organized

When you first start a business, your priority may not be bookkeeping. It’s fine to throw yourself into pitching or working with manufacturers or suppliers, but don’t lose sight of what’s going on in the books. You need to make sure you have a firm handle on the numbers, and you know exactly where you are in terms of sales, expenditure, and profits. If you’re not a dab hand or you don’t have time for accounts, enlist the services of an accountancy company. Working with experts will ensure that your books are in order, eliminate stress, and give you an accurate picture of where you’re at. You can also use accountancy services to manage tax affairs, which will make life much easier when it comes to paying income or corporation tax. Keep a record of all invoices and receipts from day one.

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The success of a business relies on its ability to generate profits. To do this, you need to earn more than you spend. If you’re new to business, never underestimate the value of keeping an eye on the books, using professional services and planning ahead.