I find that too many security and low-voltage dealers act as their customers’ “bank” and feel compelled to extend credit and tolerate poor payment behavior from deadbeat customers in order to retain these cash-flow sucking ticks of human beings.
It has been my experience that slow-paying customers are best eliminated, not nurtured and coddled. Uncollected dollars lose value rapidly and severely strain a business’ cash flow.
Cash Flow is King in Business Today, here are three (3) ways to improve your Cash Flow
1. The best way to accelerate collections:
– Exercise due care in extending credit.
– Never extend unlimited credit; set credit limits.
– Request payment on time. If a bill is due on Tuesday and it is unpaid, collections efforts shall commence on Wednesday, not two weeks from now.
– Offer incentives for pre-payment and early payment.
2- The Best Way To Delay Payments Are:
– Negotiate favorable payments terms with key vendors.
– Never **spoil** a vendor by paying before due dates.
– If an emergency arises, communicate with vendors early and often, in order to secure cooperation and pending due bills into long term debt.
– In severe cash flow crisis mode, negotiate the conversion and pending due bills into long term debt.
3- The Best Way To Reduce Day-To-Day Expenses:
– Shop new vendors and challenge the prices of vendors with from you’ve had continuing relationships with.
– Place limits on purchases by category.
– Reduce supply and inventory kept on hand, demand shorter delivery times from your vendors.
– Examine expense categories where ‘creep’ most often occurs. egs.: Next Day when 2 or 3 day will do.
These are just few cash flow strategies to help you through the winter, but if you find yourself in a cash flow predicament, then I would say it’s safe to say you haven’t been in “ANT” mode this past summer.
I believe most business owners need to think more like ANTS, and the best story on ANTs comes from my first mentor, Jim Rohn.
Jim Rohn has identified four key lessons from the behaviour of ants that can help us lead to better, more productive lives. Jim Rohn is no more – but his messages continue to inspire. Here then, are the four lessons from Rohn’s ‘Ants Philosophy’.
1. Ants never quit. Have you noticed how ants always look for a way around an obstacle? Put your finger in an ant’s path and it will try and go around it, or over it. It will keep looking for a way out. It won’t just stand there and stare. It won’t give up and go back. We should all learn to be like that. There will always be obstacles in our lives. The challenge is to keep trying, keep looking for alternative routes to get to our goals. Winston Churchill probably paraphrased the ant’s mindset when he offered this priceless advice: “Never give up. Never, never give up!”
2. Ants think winter all summer. Remember the old story of the ant and the grasshopper? In the middle of summer, the ant was busy gathering food for the winter ahead – while the grasshopper was out having a good time. Ants know that summer – the good times – won’t last forever. Winters will come. That’s a good lesson to remember. When the going is good, don’t be so arrogant as to believe that a crisis or a setback cannot happen to you. Be good to other people. Save for a rainy day. Look ahead. And remember, good times may not last, but good people do.
3. Ants think summer all winter. As they suffer through the unbearable cold of the winter, ants keep reminding themselves that it won’t last forever, and that summer will soon be here. And with the first rays of the summer sun, the ants come out – ready to work, ready to play. When we are down and seemingly out, when we go through what looks like a never-ending crisis, it’s good to remind ourselves that this too shall pass. Good times will come. It’s important to retain a positive attitude, an attitude that says things will get better. As the old saying goes, tough times don’t last. Tough people do.
4. Ants do all they possibly can. How much food does an ant gather in summer? All that it possibly can! Now that’s a great work ethic to have. Do all you can! One ant doesn’t worry about how much food another ant is collecting. It does not sit back and wonder why it should have to work so hard. Nor does it complain about the poor pay! Ants just do their bit. They gather all the food they can. Success and happiness are usually the result of giving 100% – doing all you possibly can. If you look around you, you’ll find that successful people are those who just do all they possibly can.
Improving Cash Flow & Thinking Like An ANT
If you’re in need of the Ant Philosophy in your life and business, I’ve started a new coaching program called the Mini-Maverick where you’ll discover successful marketing strategies that will continually generate more security sales and get you working on your business, not in it.