A Takeaway from what I’ve learned so far…
This semester was a real eye opener for me. I thought I was done with my Sources & Uses spreadsheet at the end of ENT 640, but there was so much more to learn about this one little spreadsheet (and everything was so important!). I had no idea how involved valuing a company actually was. I hear valuations all the time on the podcasts I listen to and the TV shows that I watch about entrepreneurs. I guess I never really thought, in detail, about how they come up with the valuation of their companies. I thought it was based more on how much revenue the company made before taxes and expenses were taken out.
There are so many ways to get funding to keep your business going, or get it off the ground. I learned more about crowdfunding, equity shares, and debt financing than I’d ever known before. I was happy to learn about ways to find cash in your business through inventory reduction and accounts receivable. I guess I had never considered what my business would look like if nobody was paying on time. I just assumed everyone paid on time. I never knew about incentives from suppliers for paying your bill in full, on-time or early. Paying on-time or early is a great way to cut costs because of the discount you receive on your bill. If you are buying super large quantities of an item, that’s a huge annual (and lifetime) savings!
I was also grateful for the guidance the harvesting assignment gave me. Who knew it was so important to start thinking about your exit strategy?!? When I thought about starting my own business, I never thought about how I was going to sell it…just how I was going to build it. With the many different ways you could lose your business to equity partners, the government, or just leaving it behind when you’re ready to retire…having a strategy is extremely helpful. Stick with a plan A, if that goes south…move on to plan B. Hopefully, you won’t have to worry about a plan C.