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  • Writer's pictureMarty Jalove

The Essential Finance Guide for Small Businesses

Updated: 5 days ago

The financial health of your small business is like a sizzling piece of bacon—crispy, savory, and an all-around pleasure for your business palate. But just like bacon, the intricacies of business finance require the right ingredients, proper preparation, and vigilant attentiveness, lest it leads to a financial mess. In this episode, we’ll sizzle through the acronym B.A.C.O.N. and serve you with the five essential finance elements that every small business leader should not just understand, but also actively manage.


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Dan Migacz and Marty Jalove, Master Happiness
Dan Migacz A.M. Woodland Outdoor Design

B is for 'Begin with a Solid Foundation': Understanding Startup Costs

Launching a business is a lot like building a house—without a solid foundation, the organization is bound to crumble. For any small business venture, understanding and accurately predicting startup costs is crucial. At this critical juncture, poorly managed finances can mean the difference between success and a premature shutdown. Startup costs may include equipment, marketing, licenses, and legal fees. Neglect these, and you may find yourself undercapitalized or overextended before you've even begun.

Staying Lean from Day One

To mitigate risks, start with a lean approach. This means distinguishing between what you need to start the business versus what you want. Keep unnecessary luxuries at bay, elected for operational necessities—your business can grow into the splendor later on.

Think in Ranges, Not Specifics

Be prepared for startup costs to manifest within a range of your projections. This variability requires a financial cushion. Over-budgeting for each component and categorizing them as high, medium, or low probable expenses can offer a more realistic picture and better guide your financial strategy.

Dan Migacz and Marty Jalove, Master Happiness
Dan Migacz A.M. Woodland Outdoor Design

A is for 'Adapt and Thrive': Operations and Revenue

Once your business is up and running, operations and revenue management must be tightly interwoven into your financial fabric. Revenue can ebb and flow, and these fluctuations can stress-test the operational efficiency and financial health of your business.

Keep Your Metrics in Sight

Understanding and regularly monitoring key performance indicators (KPIs) are essential. KPIs might include the cost of goods sold (COGS), average revenue per user (ARPU), or customer acquisition costs (CAC). These metrics offer actionable insights into your business's performance and profitability over time.

The Power of Forecasting

Forecasting revenue is not about predicting the future with a crystal ball, but about informed hypothesizing. Historical data, demand trends, and market analysis can help project revenue streams. A strong forecasting model can assist in decision-making processes and preemptive financial strategies.

C is for 'Count Every Penny': The Importance of Budgeting

Budgeting is the discipline of aligning your spending with your business’s financial goals. It helps maintain control, identify financial trouble spots early, and paves the way to reach your business targets.

Creating Your Budget Blueprint

Start by categorizing your business's spending into operating, investing, and financing activities. Operating activities include day-to-day expenses like clients' needs and maintaining the business. Investing activities refer to equipment and property, while financing involves how your business acquires capital.

Tracking and Adjusting

Once budgets are in place, tracking the actuals against these budgets is essential to ensure your business is on the financial track. If variances emerge, be ready to adjust your budgets and, more importantly, your business operations, accordingly.

O is for 'Ongoing Reporting': Tracking Taxes and Analytics

The ‘O’ in BACON emphasizes that once-a-year tax reporting doesn’t suffice. Ongoing bookkeeping, financial reporting, and tax planning are essential ingredients in the recipe for your business's financial stability.

The Bookkeeping Cookbook

Staying on top of your day-to-day financial transactions, whether by using software or hiring a bookkeeper, is vital. Regular bookkeeping ensures the accuracy of your financial reports and prepares you for filing taxes.

A Balanced Tax Diet

Tax planning should be a year-round exercise. It’s about making financial decisions that optimize your tax situation, such as timing asset sales, investments, and managing your business income.

N is for 'Nurturing Growth': Planning for the Future

All the ingredients in the finance kitchen are prelude to the ultimate business goal—to grow. Planning for growth encompasses strategic financial management and investment decisions.

Investing in the Business

Prudent investment in your small business can yield significant returns. Whether through expanding product lines, geographic expansion, or operational scalability, investment decisions must be aligned with your business's long-term strategic plan.

Adopting a Finance-Focused Culture

Nurturing a culture where every employee understands the role of finance in business growth is crucial. No matter their position, all individual’s decisions and actions impact the financial health of the company.

The Essential Finance Guide for Small Businesses

Seek Expert Help When the Kitchen Gets Hot

The sea of business finance can be treacherous, especially for the uninitiated. Recognize that while BACON provides a delectable way to digest the essentials, no blog post can replace the wisdom of a seasoned financial advisor or certified accountant. For small business owners, regularly consulting with a financial expert ensures that your finances are being managed responsibly and in accordance with best practices.

In the grand scheme of things, financial acumen is non-negotiable for small business leaders. Your business's success hinges on your ability to manage and interpret financial data competently. Keep sizzling through the BACON guide and remember to take the final step: seek help when the kitchen gets hot, and ensure your business is being managed by a synergistic blend of strategic vision and fiscal prudence. Your business’s financial future may very well depend on it.

For more savory insights into business finance and other essential aspects of running a small enterprise, stay tuned to our blog. We’re here to help you turn the raw capital of your business into a well-cooked, tantalizing empire.

Ready to take your small business finance game to the next level? Connect with us today and see how we can elevate your business preparation and strategy. It’s a call you won’t regret. After all, the business world is full of unpredictable issues — but your financial strategy doesn't have to be one of them.


To learn more about The Essential Finance Guide for Small Businesses go to: or “Bacon Bits with Master Happiness” on Apple Podcast, Spotify, Google Podcast, Amazon Music, Audible, iHeart Radio or wherever you listen to your favorite podcasts.

Or catch us LIVE on "BACON BITS with Master Happiness" on 98.3 FM, Monday Night at 7:00 PM and start making your life SIZZLE!

Marty Jalove of Master Happiness is a Company Coach, Business Consultant, and Marketing Strategist that helps small businesses, teams, and individuals find focus, feel fulfilled, and have fun. Master Happiness stresses the importance of realistic goal setting, empowerment, and accountability in order to encourage employee engagement and retention. The winning concentration is simple: Happy Employees attract Happy Customers and Happy Customers come back with Friends.

Want to learn more about bringing more happiness into your workplace and life? Contact Master Happiness at or

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