Friday, October 3, 2008


A successful entrepreneur with a good business concept may consistently register record sales and profits, but he or she can go bankrupt because of cash flow problems. Indeed, managing cash flow is a critical area in finance, one that can spell the difference between the success and failure of a business. So, just like a smart basketball coach who develops a winning strategy by reviewing the “stats” of his team’s strengths and weaknesses, the entrepreneur should similarly monitor his or her cash flow” stats” to develop an effective financial strategy.

The lifeblood of any business is its cash flow. Without it, the business is like a bloodless person. If you are always unable to collect your accounts receivables on time, you won’t be able to generate enough funds to pay for your operating expenses. Sooner than you think, you will be in financial distress and may even have to close shop. This is because the cash that goes in and out of your company is what determines your financial position. If you are in cash surplus, you can possibly invest the excess money in short term investments, if you are in cash deficit, on the other hand, you may need to source financing to bridge your cash shortfalls. Thus, for you to forecast and effectively deal with changes in your cash position, it is important to understand the various factors that affect your cash flow.

The sources of your cash flow collections will either be recurring or non recurring. Recurring items are those that come from operations, such as sales customers. Non recurring items are those that come from investment and financing, such as capital advances from your business partners or proceeds from bank loans and other items of similar nature.

When you understand the concept of cash flow and learn how to measure it accurately, you can improve your performance and become more competitive. It will be good to ask your business advisor or accountant for guidance when you are planning to construct your initial cash flow forecast. Once the template has been made, you can simply input the figures and can easily come up with your forecasts.

In any case, always remember that having cash flow forecast can bring a sense of order and well-being not only to your business but also to yourself as an entrepreneur.

Source: Entrepreneur Philippines By Henry Ong

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