Wednesday, July 07, 2010
to Make to Create a Fiscal Vision That Will Help You Navigate Tomorrow's Economic Climate
Boston – July 7, 2010 – The jury is out on what tomorrow's economic outlook will be. Some experts are declaring that we are at the bottom of the market and things are on the upswing. Others, including Economist Arthur Laffer, are predicting that the 2011 economy will be a double dip bust. But all the experts seem to agree on one thing: business leaders need to be nimble and prepared to turn on a dime to pursue new opportunities that are in the offing. Such loosey-goosey advice does not impress Gary W. Patterson, CEO of FiscalDoctor® and Risk Management Expert, who insists that there's no substitute for creating your own economic reality based on a viable fiscal vision.
To this end, FiscalDoctor Patterson offers ten essential tips to start the fiscal vision process. After all, the ultimate goal is to control your company's financial destiny by capitalizing on hidden high-return opportunities, while limiting exposure to risk. Otherwise, as Patterson likes to say, "The cost of what you don't know can cost you your company."
1. Accessible Cash Is King. How opportunistic can your company be when you are not sure about the accuracy of your balance sheet and cash equivalents today and six months into the future? If you must, sell low to liquidate useless inventory and/or money-losing facilities and products. Use freed-up cash to fund new opportunities on the horizon.
2. Don't Let Yesterday's Business Model Control Your Financial Decisions of Tomorrow. Take a hard look at your business model from a financial perspective and ask yourself if it is still relevant. Perhaps it's time for a business model overhaul.
3. Discard the Data Minutia and Focus on Your Company's Five Critical Success Factors. Identify and spotlight five areas of your operations that are absolutely essential to the health and well-being of your business. So many companies haven't a clue about the core of their operations because they're drowning in useless, indecipherable data.
4. Put on the Financial Brakes. Be honest with yourself and your executive team and clean up your balance sheet. For the most part, accounts such as allowance for receivables and inventory reserves are considered nothing more than "smoothing out" tools for too many companies. Think about the Toyota financial reserve for brake repairs. Where is your company playing financial games to accrue inner-sanctum bonuses instead of providing quality financial information that will increase the wealth of all your employees?
5. Don't Abuse Your Top Performers. Media stories abound about how too few employees are forced to take up the slack as a result of company wide layoffs. Those left behind may be ready to bolt for the door as soon as a reasonable opportunity comes their way. How reasonable are your employee productivity expectations? How creative are you in showing your appreciation of and gratitude to your most valuable asset – your high-performing employees?
6. Put Your Money into Resources That Create New Opportunities. Research shows that major initiatives for new opportunities never get off the ground because of lack of resources and effective strategic planning. Where should you reallocate resources NOW so that next year's revenues and net income levels will bring about new opportunities?
7. Get Out of the Bunker and into the Trenches. Too many company leaders are still hunkered down in the bunkers after last year's economic downturn. Smart are the leaders who are willing to brave the new economic reality and lead their companies to a new level of success.
8. If You Don't Think You Need a Contingency Plan, Think Again. Unless you want to be the media's next whipping boy, create a contingency plan now. Would you rather be a Tylenol success story or a BP disaster?
9. Fire Customers Who No Longer Support Your Company's Financial and Strategic Goals. Aren't you tired of hearing your accounting people complain about how certain customers are costing your money or worse how they're abusing your employees? Not only will you create companywide goodwill but you'll also increase your company's profits.
10. Join the 21st Century. Stop using budgetary constraints as an excuse for not investing in the latest technologies, including safety systems.
FiscalDoctor® works with leaders to control their financial destiny and capitalize on hidden, high-return opportunities, while limiting exposure to risk. He offers services from a financial/operational assessment identifying key issues for resolution to a comprehensive enterprise risk management (ERM) review for creating a roadmap to achieve corporate vision and goals. For more information, please visit www.fiscaldoctor.com
About Gary W. Patterson
Gary W. Patterson, president & CEO of FiscalDoctor®, has been a consultant for more than 200 companies spanning supply chain, high tech, transportation, construction, and service industries. Patterson is a well-known speaker on ERM, operational risk management (ORM), strategic budgeting, risk assessment, leadership, and change management.
His book, Stick Out Your Balance Sheet and Cough: Best Practices for Long-Term Business Health, includes resources on Strategic Planning, Growth, Leadership, Strategic Budgets, Contingency Planning, Contract Negotiations, Finance & Corporate Evaluation, Due Diligence, and Information Systems Technology. The book is available on Amazon.com http://tinyurl.com/stickoutbalance
For more information on the FiscalDoctor, visit his website at www.fiscaldoctor.com. Patterson also offers a "free" fiscal fitness test at www.fiscaldoctor.com/fiscaltest.html. He can be reached at 781-237-3637.
© 2010 Gary W. Patterson. All rights reserved.
Gary W. Patterson