When you're running a small business, you need all the help you can get. The good news is that there are plenty of tools available to help you on your way to success. As I run my small business, here the five things that help me the most:
1. Proper Office Setup
If you want to be able to focus on your small business, and the work you do, a proper office setup is essential. Of course, the proper setup for one business might not be the proper setup for another business. Consider what helps you focus your thoughts on your business. Create your space around your business, and what you need to focus on it. You should have a dedicated space to work on your business so that you can concentrate properly. While it's tempting to set up a small business that allows you to do some of your work on the couch, you are more likely to do better work if you have the right setup. I'm actually working on this right now… getting a better desk, completely rearranging my office, and painting the room a “productive” blue.
2. Business Credit Card
One of the best tools I use in my business the American Express Business Gold Rewards Card, that allows me to make business-related purchases, and to earn rewards for those purchases. A good business credit card that can help you maximize your expenses is a valuable tool.
American Express has a generous rewards program that can help you receive flexible rewards for your regular business spending. Your business credit card helps you with cash flow as well. You can be more flexible and liquid with your expenses, freeing up other cash for such things as payroll.
Plus, when you're ready to use your rewards points, they are easy to use on travel. It's a good way to build up rewards that can reduce your costs — even as you earn those rewards with regular business purchases.
3. Good Accountant
Your accountant can help you optimize your taxes and help you with your record-keeping. As your taxes become more complex as your business progresses, you might not want to spend so much time dealing with some of those issues. Some of the nitty-gritty details of taxes and preparing business finances can suck up your time and bring your focus away from the big picture items you should be focusing on to grow your business.
One of the tools a good accountant can offer you is helpful advice and insight. You can plan your tax strategy, and your accountant can keep you up to speed on the latest deductions available to your business. It's a good way to ensure that you are remaining “in the lines” with your business, and you might receive good information that can help you manage better.
Even if you don't hire an accountant, you can at least get some good help and streamline your processes with good payroll apps and tax preparation apps.
Any sort of smartphone or tablet is a necessity these days. I use the Samsung Galaxy Note Edge to stay connected to what's going on in my business, no matter where I am. There are a number of business apps that can be used to streamline your business. From calendar apps to apps like Evernote, you can stay organized.
And, of course, with the right apps connected to point-of-sale hardware or the apps related to invoicing and bookkeeping, you can manage your business no matter where you go.
5. Good Team Members
You might be surprised at how the right team members can help your small business. Good team members that can take on certain tasks can help free you up for big picture items that have greater impact on your business as a whole.
Team members don't have to be permanent employees. You can do well when you outsource. Some mundane tasks, such as social media promotion, payroll, bookkeeping, and many administrative tasks, can be easily outsourced. There are a number of good people you can outsource to, freeing up your time.
You might be surprised at how much more you can accomplish when you have dedicated time to work on it. If you can combine these tools, you will have a greater chance at success in your business, no matter what your business is.