I’m starting off this year by reading The E Myth Revisited - Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It by Michael E. Gerber. It’s a great motivational read for small business owners and a reminder to stay focused on what makes a business successful.
Eleven years ago my husband and I decided to go into business for ourselves and start up a CPA firm. My husband had great audit and tax experience working for larger CPA firms and was also experienced as a controller for a group of fast food restaurants. I came along to help him with my background in accounting and tax. We bought a client base from a retiring accountant and opened up our firm for business.
Both of us had technical skills doing the accounting and tax work, but we had never been the owners of a business before. We knew little about managing people and nothing about sales and marketing. Like most people who start their own businesses we were “technicians” with a skill set, tired of working for other people and ready to create something for ourselves.
Fortunately for us, we decided early on to sign up with a business coach and a new world of business networking and marketing techniques opened up to us. Being mentored by a business coach basically taught us what The E Myth emphasizes. As a business owner you have to learn to be an entrepreneur (inventive and forward thinking with a vision for the business) and a manager (establishing good operating systems and motivating and training employees) of the business as well as understanding or doing the technical part. For technicians (most of us who have started our own business), doing the technical work is what we’re most comfortable with. It’s what we’re good at. It’s our comfort zone. But a business can’t survive being run by technicians. For a business to succeed you have to spend time working ON your business as much as you’re working IN your business.
After eleven years in business it’s still easy for us to fall back on old sins of staying in our comfort zone and treating our business as a place to go to work rather than as a product we should be creating and improving. But we know better so we will refocus, spend more time working ON our business, be entrepreneurs and managers in addition to technicians, and do better!
I hope 2018 will be a prosperous year for you and your business and that you will keep your focus on what it takes to succeed! If you need an inspirational boost to start off the new year like I did, I highly recommend reading or re-reading The E Myth Revisited.
Accountant and Director of Marketing at Allen & Company, PC
Allen & Company, PC - a CPA firm serving Kennesaw, Marietta, Acworth, Woodstock and north Atlanta. Providing accounting, financial statement audit, taxation, and advisory services for individuals and businesses. Extensive experience working with franchised quick service restaurants and other franchised businesses.