Financial wellbeing has become the big buzzword in recent years. It seems like everyone is talking about it, even the banks. There’s a good reason for this, especially after the events of this year.
According to studies 46% of workers spend at least three work hours each week thinking about their finances. And poor financial wellness costs Australian businesses $33 billion per annum. And this was before COVID.
As a business owner, having control over your finances and in turn your choices has a dramatic impact on your life at work, and at home.
So here’s five steps you can take to achieve that sense of security and freedom financial wellbeing brings.
Take control over your finances
As 2020 has shown us in stark reality, there’s things we can control, and things we can’t. Whether it’s for your business or home budget, never before has managing your cashflow and spending been more important than now; knowing exactly where your money goes each month. There are many budget tracking tools you can use to help you with this.
Cashflow planning and saving really comes down to behaviour; how you commit to working towards achieving your goals. During COVID restrictions we all learnt to adjust our spending to suit the situation. The same habits should be applied now to ensure you maintain that control over your finances.
Absorb a financial shock
This is a big one. Obviously we’ve gone through and will continue to feel the impacts of a volatile economy. Now more than ever is a good time to review aspects such as income protection, personal and business insurances (‘key person’ is an important one), estate planning and emergency funds so that you’re financially prepared for the unexpected – whatever that may look like.
Plan for these ongoing costs. It may be difficult parting with the money at the time, but it could be the difference between sinking or swimming when faced with a crisis. Knowing that your interests are protected will take a significant weight off your mind.
Keep looking forward
I know how tough this year has been, especially trying to maintain a business as well as a household. What you can’t afford to do though is lose sight of your goals and stop working on a plan to get there. Yes, the goalposts may have changed and you may have to use the word of 2020 – pivot. But that should focus you even more on shaping what the next 12 months, three years and ten years looks like.
We all need hope to move forward for our own wellbeing. To focus on what will motivate us to keep striving and pushing ahead. Adversity often brings opportunity. So maintain your passions or explore new ones. And go for it.
Don’t go it alone
As a business owner and entrepreneur, you have to take on many of the responsibilities yourself. Planning and protecting your financial future shouldn’t be one of them. It’s simply not worth the risk – for your business and lifestyle.
Whether it’s your accountant, financial planner, lawyer, mentor or a combination of all; a trusted advisor is worth their weight in gold. Use their expertise, not just for the sense of security and confidence they bring but also to ensure you don’t miss out on opportunities to improve your financial situation. The work you put into your business should be the same amount of work you put into your finances. They go hand-in-hand.
Enjoy a balanced life
When we talk about work/life balance, what 2020 presented us wasn’t exactly what we had in mind. It did open our eyes, however, to different ways of working and how businesses may operate in the future. Do you need to work five days in an office anymore? Can your business use online tools to make it more efficient, productive and give you back some time? Will that one hour meeting interstate be better via Zoom than in person? All these new possibilities should be part of your thinking to help better align your professional life with your home life.
When that happens, you’ll also find your financial and emotional wellbeing will be aligned as well. And that is an outcome you simply can’t put a price on.
This post was written by Ryan Watson, founder and CEO of Tribeca Financial, and dedicated to assist others in creating wealth for themselves. His approach to any challenge is ‘why not’, which has seen him be a champion for change within the financial planning industry and advocate for enhancing financial wellbeing for everyone.