My pickle with the prickle

Posted: 23 Sep '21

The weather in Brissy this week has been a little crazy. At times, really warm then wild winds and an unseasonal chilly snap. You could be forgiven for thinking that you had moved to Melbourne, except for the fact that we aren’t in lockdown and the earth hasn’t moved. The wild wind did cause some headaches at JOG Central. My world-famous flaccid cactus, that has made it unscathed through a lifetime of challenges and tough times, took a nose dive onto the balcony. It is now less of a flaccid cactus and more of a snapped cucumber. A bowl of tzatziki, if you will. I am hoping for a revival but just in case I’m not successful, don’t tell my daughter. I am supposed to be babysitting said cacti while she gallivants around the world building her career. Guess I am off to Mappins to buy a new pot!

Nursing a sad cacti after a bad break made me think about all the small businesses JOG has nursed over the last 18 months. COVID has been to business what wild winds were to Flaccy. It has bashed them around a bit then blown them off course. In an Australian Bookkeepers Network nationwide survey just this week, 78% of bookkeeping practices surveyed said that they were anticipating that at least one of their small business clients would go into liquidation within the next 6 months. This represents a massive number of small businesses teetering on a financial knife edge once lockdowns are over. Although the government help has been a welcome (but slow) lifesaver, it’s likely that many businesses, like cacti, will not survive.

So, what are some suggestions for preparing for this zombie business apocalypse. The big one is making sure you are up to date with your accounts. You can’t determine if you will survive without knowing where you are right now. And that includes keeping up with your compliance lodgements with the ATO. There is also the worry that if your accounts aren’t up to date and you are trading insolvent, you may be in breach of your duty as a director to prevent insolvent trading. If you are worried, ask for help from your trusted advisors. Your accountant and bookkeeper are well placed to help you with making decisions about the future. Lean on them to help you navigate these tough times. And finally, act now. Make the tough decisions while they are still yours to make. Postponing the inevitable doesn’t save you money. It just costs you more sleep. If your small business is more of the cacti survivor type, these suggestions are still relevant. Just like proficient gardeners, the best advisors help in good times and bad, in weather calm or inclement. All you need to do is ask.

As for my dilemma with Flaccy the Cacti, if there is no hope of resuscitation, I guess I will be forced to replace him with a cacti look-a-like. 

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