Updated: Apr 13, 2021
I looked at my current Twitter feed and noticed I was following the wrestler, Hulk Hogan. Hulk Hogan was my favorite wrestler growing up, so I chuckled. However, as a business accountant, there was no connection to why he would show up in my feed. At that time, I had social media manager managing my account. And so far, I've cycled through four social media managers!
I have spent thousands of dollars on consultants to help with social media, website development, business consultants, and membership fees. I have been greatly disappointed with many of these services. As entrepreneurs, there's this idea that you need to pay for certain services because you have a business. Well, you don't have to engage with every consultant you meet. Or join every organization that says they can help your business grow.
Here are 3 necessary tips on how to avoid financial loss in your business:
1. Do your research.
Google reviews, Facebook, Linkedin, and other social media platforms are your friends. Look for those who have used the service or were part of the organization. Reach out to those individuals to seek feedback. If you are thinking about joining an organization, ask if it has helped businesses grow (i.e., increase revenue).
2. Ask yourself if the service aligns with your current goal(s).
Many consultants and networking organizations love startups and founders. Being new to entrepreneurship, you may lack discernment, so you might be susceptible to services you might not need. Utilize free options first. Take your time to decide. Remember, this is another process you also have to manage when you work with professional service providers. You have to monitor them to ensure they are providing what they promised. One lesson I learned from joining membership organizations is to have a goal to build strategic partnerships. Make sure this goal is on your list. Membership organizations can include strategic partners, and your potential clients interact with a variety of service providers. These members can make introductions to potential clients. Better yet, be an ambassador for your business.
3. Ask yourself what the return on investment is.
Will this service help you professionally or grow revenue? I joined a networking organization that did not return in sales but provided events on communication, targeting your audience, or building your leadership skills. The membership indirectly increased my revenue because I was able to attract more clients. Do the math! If the membership fee is $649 annually, evaluate whether that membership generated revenue at the end of the year.
Essential services that continue to help me along the way are paying for an accountant, lawyer, and executive coach. All three individuals have done great things for my business. They've taken my business to the next level. If you follow any successful entrepreneur, such as Oprah, Gwen Jimmere, Janice Bryant Howroyd, they all have key players on their team and invested in themselves professionally. Use these tips to decide wisely which service providers will be on your team to help grow your business.
Linda Diakite Karressy, the owner of Insight Financial Group, makes accounting fun! She isn’t your stereotypical zero-personality accountant who wears the traditional green shade. She loves breaking down accounting to its lowest denominator so that everyone can grasp it. Plus, Linda’s a natural teacher. As a seasoned accounting professional, she understands how to engage adult learners and hold their attention.