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Financial literacy

Discussion in 'Accounts and Finance' started by Digsby Trace, Jan 18, 2016.

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  1. Digsby Trace

    Digsby Trace Member

    I was never good in math and hate working with numbers. I only got mediocre mark in accounting subjects and really didn't take it seriously. But I know that accounting is a very important part of any business. How do I motivate myself to love accounting? Any website where I could read accounting related stuff?
    T J Tutor likes this.
  2. T J Tutor

    T J Tutor Member

    This is not uncommon, in fact, it most common. The short answer is hire an accountant. They are not expensive for the basics. Interview some, find a couple that are a good fit for you and your business, then pick one. Make sure you are up front and honest with them about your lack of knowledge and skills with interpreting the data. Explain that for a short while, they need to educate you on reading and interpreting the data.

    When you are properly instructed how to interpret the data, and you don't have actually do the accounting, then and only then will you love it. You may never love the accounting, but you will easily learn to love the data when you can interpret it at a glance.
    setupdisc and Digsby Trace like this.
  3. Kett

    Kett Member

    Hire an accountant that works for you!! (if you know what I mean). I have had accountants the can recite every book on tax laws, its pointless and making it impossible to get ahead...at the end of the day I was paying more tax than I had to and missing out of seeing vital parts of the business that I could improve or make bigger cuts from. Getting an accountant that worked for me and my businesses success was life changing, it made my job a zillion times easier.
    Apart from that I had huge issues just understanding a lot of the accounting lingo... I did a 3 days course on finance for non-finance in Sydney, it was pricey but its paid for itself 10 times over now. In 18months I turned a $300K business to a $1mil and I honestly believe that having the right accountant and having the knowledge to work with them was a huge component to that success.

    Hope this helps, if I can assist any further please don't hesitate to contact me.
  4. Griffin

    Griffin Member

    Get some basic knowledge, but as the others have recited, hire an accountant. Be able to speak with the same vocabulary, but leave them to the technical portion of accounting. Accounting just isn't the most exciting sector of business, and I highly doubt many accountants even really enjoy it. Most accountants that I have talked to do it because it's something that you just get used to, and it isn't overly complicated once you know your stuff/limited variation.
    setupdisc, T J Tutor and Digsby Trace like this.
  5. pwarbi

    pwarbi Member

    Welcome to the club! I also hate doing figures and the first thing I did was hire an accountant when I could afford it.

    It might sound like the easy way out but there's nothing wrong with that, and at the end of the day that's what they're available for.

    That then leaves you to concentrate on the parts of the business that you are good at.
    setupdisc likes this.
  6. briannagodess

    briannagodess Member

    I'd advice you to research online about the basics of accountancy in a business. You don't have to be an expert or an accountant at all, just learn some need to knows about it. Then, hire a professional or an accountant to work for you in the business. It's a more effective way of handling and managing your business in terms of money and also more practical in terms of time and energy. Good luck!
    setupdisc likes this.
  7. T J Tutor

    T J Tutor Member

    This is well said. Over the past forty plus years in business I have known many accountants and there is definitely a portion of them that have no true love for it.

    I've always been good at it, and I've never had any passion for it. In my late twenties, I stopped doing it myself. I simply chose at that time to get trained extensively on how to interpret and act on the data. Since then, it has made a huge difference for me. Becoming an expert at reading the data was the single smartest decision I have ever made in business. It doesn't take a lot of time in your life to learn to read the data, and it will serve you as well or better than any other skill in your business.
    setupdisc and Griffin like this.
  8. Digsby Trace

    Digsby Trace Member

    This is what I was thinking too. Just getting an accountant is not enough if you don't understand anything. I want to be hands-on and don't want to fully rely everything on others. Maybe one thing is because you can't trust people so you need to be aware on what's going on. Being equip with basic knowledge on finance and accounting will help you understand the business even more and maximize the potential of your business. After all, it's you who have the best interest for your business and not others.
    setupdisc likes this.
  9. ruener79

    ruener79 Member

    In the previous work that I had, we relied heavily on accountants. We basically said YES to what was asked of us. How can we argue when we don't know an iota of thing with regards to finance and accounting. When we began to not do well in the business, we lost the accountants and we were lost scrambling for things. We eventually had to learn on our own and we were amaze at the information we recently acquired. SO the big lesson for me, should I wish to start my own business, I truly would have to invest a little about getting the know-how on the basics of finance and accounting. Not only will you be able to determine if your accountant is only giving you BS. The posters here are right, you need not be an expert of everything. But you certainly don't want to have zero knowledge as it can be pricey to be fooled by your own accountants. So study bits by bits, and you'll soon have enough to know that the accountant you will hire knows what he's doing.
    setupdisc and Digsby Trace like this.
  10. Bonyi

    Bonyi Member

    Of course there is no way you can do business without basic knowledge of maths or accounting and you will need to deal with figures. First just make up your mind about that that you will deal with figures and then love it. You can't do well in something you don't like. Secondly go ahead and Google accounting for sites where you can at least get basic knowledge.
    setupdisc and Digsby Trace like this.
  11. eProject

    eProject Member

    Join over 6million learners on Alison and learn relevant entrepreneurship courses. They offer free online courses and almost anybody can join. You will select your own time study for convenience. Go to their website today and register.
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  12. Digsby Trace

    Digsby Trace Member

    Thank you for these helpful advice. @eProject I'll sure to check Alison. IT was my first time to hear about it. I tried Coursera though but most of them were about theories which is great but I also want to hear some application.
    setupdisc likes this.
  13. Spirit

    Spirit Member

    Get an accountant once you've learned the basics. You can't totally abdicate all responsibility to an accountant and assume if something is wrong it's totally their responsibility. I'm not sure how much protection there is for you in a court of law if something is wrong and you sign off on it.
    setupdisc likes this.
  14. Bonyi

    Bonyi Member

    You are right, you can't put aside accounting in business which has a lot to do record keeping. You just have to make up your mind to love the subject or you'll have your records messed up. There are sites to learn the basics of accounting. Just google accounting on the web.
    setupdisc likes this.
  15. You can avoid learning accountancy and still become a good businessman. There is a popular story in our home town. About 60 years ago, an Indian man came to the country. He literally came with nothing, nor education, no money, but today, he sons are business tycoons in the country.
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  16. setupdisc

    setupdisc Member

    I asked a friend what their best advice was for choosing an account, and he said: "Marry one! Then you know what they are doing and their business just as they know yours!" :D

    (His wife is an accountant and became his personal accountant when he had worries about who was managing his finances after the second year of running his newest business).

    He didn't want to place her there just yet as to not show favoritism or family hiring which might have made the accountant less likely to do their job, but he did want to find out where the money was disappearing to with a certain area that it should not have been.

    She was already successfully managing accounts for another unrelated company and doing it very well, so he made the decision to have her there and found out....some very interesting things...along with her being able to prove herself as a valuable asset doing a stellar job as an accountant for him.

    Having a professional accountant is good. Having a professional accountant you can trust? That's even better. The only thing better than that is being able to do it yourself, but not everyone has the time or patience to.

    Not everything on a balance book unaccounted for is an unintentional mistake. I wish it could be explained that way, but the reality is that if you hire employees or accountants and the employees think they can get away with something if their morality and respect isn't on par with yours...they often will try to. Accountants may have a higher standard on this than usual, but not all of them do. That alone should be enough of a reason to want to learn and figure out how to become the best accountant-checker you can, even if you decide to leave the accounting work up to them.

    The alternative to hire someone to audit an accountant can be even more costly. So you could save yourself a fortune in several ways, and have peace to know what is going on directly with your business finances if you teach yourself enough to know how it should be, even if you don't want to have to do it daily to ensure it should be. :cool:

    Here's two resources you may like and find useful:

    Learn Accounting Online for Free: Accounting Coach!
    Learn Accounting Online Freely (Harvard Course Instruction)

    Alison is also really good and has some solid courses to get your feet wet with it.

    Being able to survey and analyze this area of your business isn't something you may want to do, but it is definitely something you will need to do enough to keep track of things and make sure that anyone you hire to help you is doing what they are supposed to.
    Digsby Trace and T J Tutor like this.
  17. Digsby Trace

    Digsby Trace Member

    I know I shouldn't laugh but this is the best advice I've ever received I wish I thought of it myself. I would probably find it boring to date one but in a business perspective, it is really difficult to find people you can trust so having them as wife/ husband will decrease the chance of them fooling you in a business. Most of my highschool batchmates took accountancy and I sometimes feel left out whenever they're talking about accounting staff even if I took a few accounting module in college. From that point, I know I should be careful on dealing with accountants since I could hear their stories about colleagues not being honest and their way of correcting "Mistakes".
    setupdisc likes this.
  18. Nancy

    Nancy Member

    I guess I am a little weird; I love numbers and accounting! But I still have an accountant. ;) She actually has classes for her clients on the basics and how to use Quickbooks, etc. I do most of my own taxes and such, but I always have her look it over for me, just in case. She stays up-to-date on the latest laws and things and I do not have time to do that. She also gives excellent advice on ways to reduce my tax burden and increase my business worth.
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2016
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  19. Jack Benoit

    Jack Benoit Member

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    This frее, sеlf-pасеd, hаnds-оn соursе frоm Kаplаn Univеrsity hеlp yоu will еxаminе finаnсiаl dесisiоn-mаking tооls аnd tесhniquеs.

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    In this еight-wееk соursе frоm Stаnfоrd Оnlinе, yоu will lеаrn thе finаnсiаl соnсеpts bеhind sоund rеtirеmеnt plаn invеstmеnt аnd pеnsiоn fund mаnаgеmеnt
    setupdisc likes this.

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