Motivational speaker Jim Rohn says that you are an average of the five people that you spend the most time with. Now, while Jim was referring to personal relations, I believe the same holds true for business relations as well. Which is why I want to highlight the five key people that I believe you should be spending the most time with (outside of your customers, partners and employees), as you launch, grow, develop and sustain your new business enterprise.
Your 5 Essential Advisers
I believe there are five key people that you want to have in your circle as you build your business going forward, and they include the following (needless to say, the quality of the people inhabiting these roles is crucial):
- A CPA/Accountant
- A Business Attorney
- A Business Banker
- A Mentor
- A Business Consultant
Perhaps one of the most important business relationships you will have is that of your relationship with your CPA/accountant. Your accountant will be there to help you properly start and incorporate your business in a way that aligns with growth plans and limited liability provisions, as well as getting you the best form of tax benefits. Your accountant will also assist with managing payroll, bookkeeping, filing taxes on time, reducing your tax buren, providing financial statements and providing general consulting on business management/strategy aspects.
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2. Business Attorneys
Your business attorney, similar to your accountant, will be there to help you properly start and incorporate your business in a way that aligns with growth plans and limited liability provisions.
Your attorney will also be there to help you properly insure your business, structure your business in terms of asset protection, comply with various regulations, comply with licensing laws and help protect any intellectual property you might have.
In addition, your business attorney will be by your side for various legal cases you find yourself involved in either as a plaintiff, a defendant or if you find yourself filing bankruptcy down the road.
3. Business Bankers
Business bankers are going to assist with all of the following:
- Getting your commercial bank accounts established
- Helping to establish commercial lines of credit
- Helping to finalize commercial term loans
- Helping to secure business credit cards
- Helping to secure commercial and self-employed mortgages
- Helping to close equipment leasing deals
Having a strong relationship with a bank or credit union, with a dedicated business banker, is key to launching your business enterprise going forward. Without banking services such as regular commercial checking/savings accounts and access to commercial financing options, it would be hard to grow, develop and sustain your business. A business banker can help you monitor and build your business credit scores, and guide you to the right loans for your type of business. There are 44+ different kinds of business financing, which makes the market extra complex and difficult to navigate without some expert guidance. (You can check your business credit scores for free on Nav to see where you stand.)
4. Business Consultants
As your business develops, you are going to have to rely on the expertise of business consultants to assist with the understanding of various products/services that would be essential to your business. Some of these consultants include but are not limited to:
- IT consultants who assist with your company’s IT infrastructure
- Marketing consultants who help increase your market visibility
- Risk management consultants who assist with various forms of risk mitigation
- Financial services consultants who help establish various forms of merchant services
5. Business Mentors
Your business mentor is usually someone that has been there and done that, in terms of operating in the same or similar industry/space that you currently operate in. They can be an adviser or inspirational role model to you as you launch your business and go through the initial growing pains of taking market share, as well as, becoming profitable.
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