I was lucky enough to spend some time in Vietnam earlier this month on a business trip. I was there to assist a client with capital raising and exploring potential new markets. Personally and professionally, the trip was very enjoyable, however this was not an opportunity I would have expected to arise just a few months ago.
On my return I met with a new client who is facing significant financial difficulties and a business restructure, due to some previous poor advice. This client would not have expected to be in this situation just a few months ago.
Both of these examples demonstrate how life can change for the better, or worse, very quickly. Whilst planning is important the world moves in mysterious ways and we don’t know what’s around the corner.
A good fisherman always prepares well and makes sure his vessel and equipment is in good order. A fisherman doesn’t know if he is going to catch a monster or run into difficulty. Therefore, a good fisherman uses good tackle and equipment to make sure if he hooks a big fish he can land it. He also makes sure his boat is in good working order with all required safety equipment, in case bad weather or bad luck strikes.
The same principles apply to business. You need to make sure that, like the fisherman, you are ready to take advantage of opportunity or manage choppy seas.
The most important step to take, in my opinion, is to surround yourself with advisors who you trust and have your best interests at heart. When opportunity knocks, or trouble strikes, you need the right people in your corner.
In addition to this, you also need to make sure you have your business fundamentals right. This includes, but is not limited, to:
- Making sure your business structure is right for you; taking into account tax planning, asset protection and succession planning.
- Understanding your current and forecast financial position.
- Knowing your level of financial resources, including access to debt and capital, to allow you to take advantage of opportunities or solve problems.
If you are not confident in your understanding of the above fundamentals, it’s time to contact your trusted advisor and review your position to ensure that you’re ready for what’s around the corner.