OffAssist Newsletter February/March 2016
Volume 21, Issue #1
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A note from Candy...

Wow, this tax season is just speeding right along. We even got an extra day this year with it being leap year (there’s your fun fact for the day!). Since we’re a little late this month with the newsletter, we’re combining February and March, sorry folks, I really did just ignore it while I dug out from the January craziness.

February this year marked a very special day. My youngest daughter turned 13. So, I officially have all teenagers now. I remember thinking when they were toddlers that I couldn’t wait until they were teens. I identify with teens better and have a knack for listening to them (they come to me when they want a no bull answer). But man! What I didn’t count on is the chauffeuring. It seems like every day there’s at least one kid that needs to go somewhere after school. Usually two. But the weekends - forget about it - all three have busy little social lives of their own and I spend way too much time driving them, picking them up, or going to the grocery store (again) because they’ve eaten anything not nailed down. It really makes me look forward to one of them getting a driver’s license ASAP so mom can get a break!

A very special Happy Birthday shoutout to my daughter, Cassie. I’m so proud of her. She’s conscientious, polite, honest with a really great sense of humor (and herself). We ended up renting a hotel suite and inviting several of her best girlfriends to hang out for the night, have pizza, cake and giggle all night. She had a blast (and, of course, we stopped for a Sonic slush on the way!). Welcome to 13, girl! I also turn 41 in just a few short days and Tom and I celebrate surviving 23 years of being married.

In this issue...

Article: 3 Reasons to Delegate
Tax Deadlines: Through March 15, 2016
Spotlight: Texas Farmers Market at Mueller
Bookkeeping Tip: Classes
Marketing Tip: Blogging
Humor: Not a Deduction

Article: 3 Reasons to Delegate

Delegating tasks are one thing many business owners just don't do. Some people may say that business owners do not delegate because they are stubborn and want to do everything themselves. As a business coach, the excuses I have heard are "I don't have the money." Or "it takes longer to train someone than I can do it myself." These are excuses. Business owners do not delegate takes because they do not realize the benefits to the business. When business owners begin to build their teams with virtual assistants, part-time employees or 1099 contractors they will see their business grow. When the business is growing typically the profits are growing too.

Here are my three reasons that business owners should delegate.

1. Your idea or vision gets completed faster. It doesn't sit on your desk waiting for "someday". When you delegate a task or project you give a completion deadline to the team member that is completing the task. You need to put on your business owner hat and stop wearing your worker bee bonnet. Leaders delegate, follow-up, and review the work of their employees. They are ultimately responsible for the end product. But, when you surround yourself with niche experts the work will get done faster and with more accuracy than if you attempted to do it yourself. Remember, "someday" never comes.

2. You save time and money. Often the person you are delegating too can complete the task faster than you. This saves you time and money! If you are not an expert at social media marketing, website updates, or newsletter creation then outsource these tasks to a virtual assistant who is the expert. You would not attempt to bake a three tier wedding cake if you are not a professional cake designer. OK, you may attempt it but admit it probably wouldn't look as good or taste as yummy. We have all seen the tattoo picture circulating on social media with the person holding a picture of an intricate design and the tattoo artist drawing a tattoo that looks like a kindergartner did it. You often get what you pay for. Do not be this person scrimping and trying to do it yourself when you should delegate the task. Another example is the person that won't pay for website maintenance or creation and it is a hot mess or nonexistent. Put a value on your time. When you realize you could have earned thousands of dollars but instead wasted the time trying to do your own website or fix your computer when you could have paid a few hundred dollars and let an expert get it updated or fixed within an hour or two. Time is money. Respect your time and money. Focus on the return on investment (ROI) when you delegate to someone who is an expert and can do the task faster and better.

3. You get more accomplished. When you delegate to your team you will be more productive. More tasks will get completed each day. You can focus on revenue producing activities while your team is taking care of the other things. Some items to delegate to your team include writing correspondence and mailing, bookkeeping, social media management, website updating, newsletter creation and other lead attraction strategies. You may also want to delegate the office cleaning, shopping and running errands, and bill paying. I have several people on my team and they each are experts at what they do. One is fabulous at writing media releases and conducting research. Another is in charge of my client care which includes scheduling, following up at times, and sending invoices. In the past, I have had a great gal who came to my office once a month to do filing and help keep me organized.

I first started delegating after I had been in business for two years and realized I still had items on my original opening day of business to do list. Those items were still on the list because I didn't know how to do them or didn't want to do them. I hired a school teacher who was unemployed for the summer and within a few days, she had my to-do list completed. 
I challenge you to look at your to-do list. What has been on there for a while? Why is on there? Also, look around the piles in your office or on your desk. How could you benefit by delegating some the work? Would you be less stressed? Would you find things easier? Look at your bank and credit card statements. Did you pay late fees because you forgot or couldn't find a bill and it was paid late? Make a list of things that you would like to delegate or should delegate. Envision how you would feel if you did not have to complete the tasks that are on your list of things to delegate. I bet you feel a sense of relief that you do not have to do those tasks.

Remember, delegating is part of growing your business. Make your list of tasks or projects you would like to not have to continue working on and want to delegate. Then look forward to my next article where I will share tips on how to choose a virtual assistant or employee.

Coach Jaynine is the owner of Dream Catcher Business and Career Coaching. She uses the knowledge and skills she acquired during her 20 year career in the United States Marine Corps, working as a Psychologist in a locked mental health hospital, and being an entrepreneur to help health professionals, small business owners, and medical spa owners grow their businesses by teaching them her five step process for attracting their ideal clients and turning them into paying clients. You can learn more about her signature programs by visiting http://coachjaynine.com/

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Jaynine_Howard/259024
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/9325841

Tax Deadlines: Through March 15, 2016

3/15/2016 Foreign Persons US Income subject to withholdings
3/15/2016 Employers Make Monthly Payroll tax deposit on the 15th of each month
3/15/2016 S-Corp Election Decision Due (if Applicable)
3/15/2016 S Corporate Returns Due / Calendar Year
3/15/2016 Issue K-1's S Corporate Returns / Calendar Year
3/15/2016 Issue K-1's S Corporate Returns / Calendar Year
3/15/2016 Corporate Returns Due / Calendar Year
3/15/2016 Corporate Returns/S Corp Extensions Due / Calendar Year
3/15/2016 Form 1042S - Foreign Persons US Income subject to withholdings
3/15/2016 Form 1042 - Annual Tax Return of US Income subject to withholdings of Foreign Persons
3/15/2016 Employers Make Monthly Payroll tax deposit on the 15th of each month
3/15/2016 Electing Large Partnerships - Issue K-1s to partners - even if you're on extension
3/15/2016 Electronic filing of W-3's with Social Security Admin including issued W-2's
3/15/2016 Electronic filing of US transmittal of US information Returns

Classes

We often get the following question often from new clients:

            “I have a few departments within my company, is there a way to track the income and expenses from each department separately so I can see how they’re doing?”

This is one of my favorite functions of QuickBooks and is so helpful when evaluating different divisions or departments within your company.

To use classes you first need to be sure the option is turned on.  Go to Edit: Preferences: Accounting: Company Preferences (must be in the admin log-in) and make sure the box next to “Use class tracking for transactions” is checked.  When you have this checked there will be a new column available when entering income and expenses for you to enter your class.

There are a few options when using classes.  You can use them all the time - for every transaction, or you can use them for specific or special events or departments.  To pull an income statement showing the classes go to Reports: Company & Financial: Profit & Loss by Class.

Some ways I’ve used classes:

Sales Reps: One company has multiple sales reps so we use classes for each rep, everything related to that sales rep goes under their class (salary, marketing expenses, telephone, etc) so the owner can view the sales reps profitability for the company

Departments: One company has multiple departments or divisions within the company, we use classes to break out all the expenses related to each department to evaluate which departments are profitable.

Events: One company has special events throughout the year.  We use classes to track each event separate to see which events are profitable.

Locations: One company has a few different locations, we use classes to separate the different locations to track how each is doing. When you pull a regular Profit & Loss it will show how the company as a whole is doing, breaking out by class will show each class separately.  By customizing the report you can pull the Profit & Loss for only that class, this is nice if you want to discuss a specific department, location, or sale reps activity without them seeing the entire company’s income and expenses.  

Blogging

Did you know one of the best marketing strategies for a small business is blogging on a regular basis? There are many benefits to blogging. One of the biggest benefits is when you blog you provide your clients and prospective clients with valuable information that can quickly establish you as an expert in your field. When you write, you research. Researching increases your knowledge. Increasing your knowledge helps you become that expert in your field. You become your readers “go to” guy.

Since we want to increase visibility, once you post your blog, be sure you have it set to automatically post to your social media platforms where more eyes will see what you have to say.  From there you can boost your blog post on Facebook and Twitter for a small fee and get views by people that wouldn’t normal see it if you depended on just the organic reach.

When you want to know something, where is the first place you look?  Online right? Blogging is good for your website’s SEO ranking. Blogging once or twice per week will drive more traffic to your website, moving it up in the ranking.

Besides having benefits for your business, blogging offers a benefits to your mind. Writing is exercise for your mind. Just like your body needs exercise, your mind needs to be stimulated. It increases your memory. I know I find when I write something down (or by typing it), I have a much better chance of remembering it than when I just read about it.

So writing a blog twice weekly sounds like a little too much? Do a video blog post. Everyone loves a good instructional video. You can even be silly if you want, show your personality and let people get to know you.  Post a funny video you found on You Tube. You don’t have to take it seriously all the time.

Another great way to give yourself a break is to get with someone in one of your networking groups and trade blog posts. Post one of their blogs on your site, and vice versa. This benefits you both because it brings new readers to each of you.

Spotlight on: Texas Farmers Market at Mueller

Texas Farmers MarketBring a friend…the dog…heck,
bring the whole family!

Voted Austin’s favorite farmers’ market via Austin Chronicle in 2014 and 2015, TFM at Mueller is a fun event every Sunday to shop, eat and enjoy fresh vegetables and artisan foods from local vendors and farmers. It is a festival of foods and tons of fun! Click here to see the list of vendors. 
 (source: http://texasfarmersmarket.org/mueller/)

Humor: Not a Deduction

Have an article you would like to write for our monthly newsletter or want to be spotlighted? Have a QuickBooks question? Email us at candy@offassist.com. This newsletter is published monthly by Candy Beauchamp of OffAssist. © 2016

The OffAssist newsletter is made possible by the the coding talents of Next Level Digital Solutions.

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Much of the advice in this newsletter is based upon the research, professional and personal experiences of the authors. If the reader has any questions concerning any material or procedure mentioned, the publisher and authors strongly suggest seeking the advice of a qualified CPA or other professional.

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