Building a business is quite an adventure. You go from idea…to open…to where are the clients going to come from and when? It is all very exciting. My business grew quite quickly and I am now at the point where I need a bit of help with certain parts.
Lots of amazing change and upheaval in my life during these last few months…a child making decisions about college, clients walking into my business, my man and I deciding it was time to create our own Brady Bunch…I am moving.
One constant during this time has been the unending support of a rather eclectic group of women. A mastermind group I was honored to be invited into….a holistic therapist, a published author, and a virtual assistant…oh, and me. When I first was approached with membership I thought to myself “why would they want me?” The Virtual assistant was off and running with her business, and the published author was just that – with radio, speaking, and books. I invited the therapist because she was just starting to build her practice and I love spending time with her.
For months now we have been meeting virtually via Google Hangouts. We started as a group of women who wanted a bit of support each week as we each built our businesses. We ranged from “new to off the ground” to “not sure what I am doing,” and each have now realized significant success before we even hit our one year anniversary. In our group space and private interactions each of these women have been my professional and personal sounding board. They have taken on the role of mentor, friend, client, and sister. At various times I have called upon each to solve a problem, recommend a service…and even just listen.
And now, I am thrilled to say, we have each outgrown our weekly meeting. With crazy work schedules, clients, and life events we no longer need (or have time for) the weekly hourly session. And we no longer have those “what do I do with this” type of questions. We each now are faced with building the next step of our respective businesses…hiring staff…publishing the next book…managing tax exposure…
So, it appears that as I take my next big steps, my mastermind will step as well…to a monthly meeting, quarterly meeting…we will have to find a way to get together and support one another, talk about new issues and opportunities facing our business endeavors, and of course…being the personal support systems we have become.
If you are a small business owner just starting out, I highly recommend finding a supportive group of people to check in with on a regular basis. And then, as you get bigger, know the group will change. Be ready for it…it is all very exciting.
April 15th has just passed us and I had quite a thrill.
I made my first estimated quarterly income tax payment.
I am known for being a bit quirky, off beat, and a friend who “requires explanation.” So I would not be surprised if you thought it weird that I found paying taxes thrilling this year.
You see, making a quarterly income tax payment indicates you are making money. Specific to my case, I am making money. My consultancy, for months “the little engine that could,” has taken off in a rather significant way. Most recently clients have walked in my door, and I have found myself enjoying this success. With that success has come income, and taxes must be paid.
As it turns out, when you work for yourself, the government wants to you to estimate your potential earnings for the year and also estimate the amount of tax you should pay on said earnings. You have to look into your magic crystal ball (for me my ball is a highly complex excel spreadsheet) and estimate what you are going to make this year, your anticipated deductions, and then the amount of tax you are going to owe. Estimate too high and you send the government too much money (which you will see when you file next year). Underestimate and you will not only owe the government but also have to pay a fine for underestimating.
Even me, with my PhD in statistics was a bit nervous originally thinking I would need a book keeper, accountant, CPA and tax attorney to help me through this. But I downloaded the form, went through the calculations, compared it to my spreadsheet, did some more research, and sent in my first check. Eureka!
Now, I can assure you this thrilled is short lived. While I skipped to the mailbox this first time