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The Nine Essentials of a Good Business

Published: 6th June 2019

Published in: TrialBalance

Businesses that develop over time run the risk of not having all the things in place that make for a good business. This is especially so if it’s a family business. In the beginning it was you – self employed for the first time. Before you knew it there were others working alongside you. They may have been family members or friends, employees, subcontractors etc. This does not belittle where you’ve got to so far. Many businesses fail within the first 3 years of operation so you’ve done a good job to get to here.

It is easy though, to overlook important steps if you’ve “grown into” your business over time. You’ve been busy building your business and working in your business. It’s not uncommon that basic business principles are sometimes never addressed.

Nine Essentials of a Good Business:

1.   A Strategic Business Plan
A strong foundation for your business will include a Strategic Business Plan. This delivers the core of everything you need for a sound business strategy. It also provides a sound business model. Without this you are more likely to make tactical decisions. What a good business needs is strategic decisions.

2.   Leadership
A good business will have a leader. Someone who takes “ownership” of the business as a whole. A leader will “walk the talk”, recognise great effort and create a “team” out of a bunch of employees. Make sure your business is not leaderless.

3.   Goals & Objectives
Establish clear goals and objectives for your business. Make sure your whole team knows about them and can align with them. Your team’s buy-in will be crucial if your business is to be successful.

4.   Systems & Procedures
Develop systems and procedures to both safeguard and improve your business. This will ensure there is a process to follow for everything. Well-documented systems are a valuable asset in any business. They will provide an added bonus when the time comes to sell.

5.  Cashflow Systems
Create a cashflow system that can forecast weeks in advance. This will go a long way to eliminating any nasty surprises.

6.   Up-to-date Debtors
Make sure your customers pay on time or bear the consequences. It can be easy to let emotions come into play when someone gives you their sad story. It’s important you have a clear policy or procedure to follow. Being a business owner sometimes means making hard decisions.

7.   And Creditors
Pay your own bills on time. It’s hard to get tough with your debtors if you’re slack in this department as well.

8.   Proactive Professional Advisors
Get advisors around you that add to what your business is up to. They need to appreciate you and your business. They also need to communicate in language that you understand.

9.   Drive & Ambition
A successful business will seek to be top of its game. It will always look for the edge, always look for new ways to improve what it does. Act with the utmost concentration, on purpose and not by happenstance.

A sound business will provide you with the lifestyle needs you want. It will also provide you with an asset that you can one day on-sell. In this way you’ll reap the ultimate reward for all your hard work. There are only two good reasons to be in business – FUN and MONEY – and if there’s no money there’s no fun. A successful business has both.

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McDonald Vague Limited

Our experience in business turnaround, restructuring and insolvency has helped many New Zealand companies through periods of growth and change, as well as difficult times.

We advise underperforming businesses how to protect their financial future and find stability through a range of turnaround services including independent accounting reviews, raising finance and divestment.

Region: Auckland

Phone: 0800 30 30 34

Accounting HQ Limited

Accounting HQ Limited is a client focussed chartered accounting firm. We believe in supporting our clients in all their financial matters and although we are a small friendly local firm we do offer a full range of accounting services for all requirements.
Accounting HQ Limited Chartered Accountants (CA) came from the merger of the Iles Casey Partnership, Farquhar Accountants Limited and Graeme Lee & Associates Limited, Chartered Accountant practices.

Region: Bay of Plenty

Phone: 07 348 7066

Duns Limited


Founded in 1980 and based in Christchurch, we offer a complete service with industry expertise in Property Investment and Development, Construction and Trades, Professional Services, Hospitality and Tourism, Retail, Motor Vehicles Dealers and Services and Transport and Logistics.

Region: Canterbury

Phone: 03 365 0768

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BM Accounting Ltd

BM recognise that different people need different things from their accountants depending on where they are in the business life cycle. Whether you are just starting out, are established in business or ready to retire we have the knowledge and expertise to support you. Similarly our dealings with a wide variety of industries and professionals help us to understand that everyone's requirements are unique.

Region: Hawke's Bay

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Naylor Lawrence

At NLA we believe that a good accountant will ensure your compliance and tax is completed to standard and on time. However, a great accountant will take the time to understand your vision for growing your business and help you plan the journey to achieve it. With some checks along the way!

Our team has the expertise to assist your business, whether it’s big or small, just starting out, or needing some fine tuning. We don’t just offer services – we offer personalised solutions for each of our clients.

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Wallace Diack Chartered Accountants Ltd

With over 50 years combined experience in New Zealand, Wallace Diack is committed to providing a comprehensive range of practical accounting services for today's economic environment that help you realise your goals.

We appreciate that selecting a firm to entrust with your accounting requirements is an important decision, intensified by rapid economic changes, increases in competitive pressures, and resource availability. With our benchmarking, cash flow forecasting, and other tools, Wallace Diack is well placed to help you make an informed decision.

Region: Nelson/Marlborough

Phone: (03) 578 7389

Sudburys Limited

Sudburys look after business owners providing solutions in all areas related to accounting, finance and wealth management. They work alongside their clients, from supporting them with their daily accounting needs, to providing them with valued business advice.

Region: Northland

Phone: (09) 430 4888

G S McLauchlan & Co

GSM is a Dunedin based Business Advisory and Chartered Accountancy practice founded in 1957. 

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McIntyre Dick Limited

McIntyre Dick is a vibrant, driven, and people focused firm of Business Advisors and Chartered Accountants leading the industry in Southland, New Zealand. They’re dedicated to delivering exceptional service and strive to put time, mind and money back in their clients’ hands.

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Harris Taylor Limited

The Accountancy world is constantly changing and highly competitive. At Harris Taylor their challenge is to stay ahead of the competition by providing the best possible service, whilst ensuring that client satisfaction remains our primary motivation and ultimate goal.

Region: Taranaki

Phone: 06 278 5058

Strettons & Co Limited

Strettons Directors lead an energetic team of skilled professionals. Their team is motivated, multi-talented and works hard to achieve maximum results for clients. Their strengths and specialities align with the backbone of New Zealand industry - forestry, farming, geothermal energy, tourism, property small to medium business and human resources.

They recognise that one size does not fit all and their business reflects this, they employ the best people with a range of talents to service their clients.

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Phone: (07) 376 1700

Southey Sayer

Offering a full range of accounting and business development services, tailored to meet the needs of each individual client. The wide range of expertise and experience within the firm is shared amongst the partners and their teams for their clients benefit. Services and products offered are fully flexible there will be no expectation to conform to a certain product or pricing structure.

Region: Wairarapa

Phone: (06) 370 0811

BW Miller Dean Ltd

BW Miller Dean Ltd was formed on 1 April 2016 with the merger of two long standing Wellington chartered accountancy practices: BW Chartered Accountants Ltd and Miller Dean Chartered Accountants Ltd. 

BW Miller Dean pride themselves on building relationships based on trust with clients through personal, individual attention, and always being available to help their clients with specialist Accounting or Finance functions when needed.

Region: Wellington

Phone: 04 910 3340

Marshall & Heaphy Limited

Central to the culture of the team that has been developed over their history, is the belief that successful and sustainable businesses are the backbone for the West Coast community. Great businesses create jobs, keeping people and family together on the Coast, building a sustainable community.

Region: West Coast

Phone: 03 768 7186