The Discovery Analysis™ is the first step of the B2B CFO® GamePlan™ and consists of four parts:
- Confidentially meet with the business owner(s), then interview company staff
- Look at the company’s financial information and computer systems
- Benchmark financial information against industry averages
- Create a confidential report of or finding in The Strategy GamePlan™
Confidentially meet with the owner
Each of the partners in our firm is a seasoned veteran, averaging more than 25 years of experience. This means we’re accustomed to CEOs and business owners expressing their goals, aspirations, concerns and frustrations. And while we don’t know what it’s like to walk in your shoes, we do understand the adage, “It’s lonely at the top.”
It would be foolish for us to say we understand the loneliness that it takes to be at the top of your organization. There’s a tremendous burden placed upon your shoulders. On the other hand, the purpose of our organization is to lift as much of that burden as possible so you can have a better chance of achieving your goals and objectives.
One of the best ways we’ve found to help clients achieve their goals and objectives is for us to simply ask what they are. We want to clearly understand your goals and objectives so we can help you create The Strategy GamePlan™ to achieve them. Some of the common goals presented to us are:
- An exit strategy plan
- Reduced stress
- More free time
- Increased personal wealth
- Increased company value
- A solid retirement plan
- Security for loved ones
- Peace of mind
- Reduced cash flow worries
Our company can help with all of the above and more. In fact, we focus on these goals and objectives when we present to you The Strategy GamePlan™.
We also want to hear the concerns and frustrations that might be impeding your ability to achieve your goals and objectives. It’s common for us to see some combination of the following issues:
- Banks won’t lend enough money at the right price
- Bankers and lenders may not trust the company’s financial statements
- Cash flow is tight
- The company’s financial statements are wrong and/or very late
- The company suspects theft of inventory or other assets
- There is uncertainty about the amount owed to the IRS on April 15th
- There are no accurate cash flow projections
- Accounting and management need specific training
Please know that what you tell us will be kept in the strictest of confidence.
Interview company staff
We’re well-versed in interviewing company staff. Typically, we’ll spend two to three hours with the accounting staff get to know them, their background, qualifications, skills and concerns. One of our goals is to access their abilities to help us achieve progress towards your goals and objectives.
We’ll also want your input regarding the others in your company you’d like us to interview, or anyone else that you feel we should meet in order to gain knowledge about your company.
Financial information and computer systems
Our understanding of your company’s financial information and computer systems is important to prepare The Strategy GamePlan™. This process shouldn’t be too time-consuming for your staff. We’ll use our experience and expertise in this area to obtain important information and gain knowledge to share with you in The Strategy GamePlan™.
Benchmark against industry standards
We use the highest level of financial analytical software. This allows us to give you accurate and timely information concerning key areas of your company—information your bankers and lenders are most likely already using to judge your company. We give you this information to discuss possible areas of improvement, if needed.
Our software will also allow us to compare your company, confidentially, to others in your industry, with the same SIC codes, similar sales and similar number of employees. Our experience shows that business owners assign great value to this information, which will contain both graphical and text-based evaluations.
The example graph below compares one company’s current ratio for the past two years to the average of other businesses in its industry. They often say a picture is worth a thousand words. This graph would show both your company and ours the areas that require immediate attention.
The following is an example of the text information that will be a part of the industry analysis. This ‘Industry Scorecard’, which is different from the business illustrated above, gives both your company and ours very valuable information regarding cash flow and profitability. Additionally, this information is provided in a similar format to what bankers and lenders use, giving you an advantage in preparing to meet with them in the future.
This information will allow you to have state-of-the-art knowledge about your business and will give both your company and ours a good idea of the areas to be focused on during The Strategy GamePlan™.
The final state of The Discovery Analysis™ is to prepare a report called The Strategy GamePlan™. Below are some important things for you to know about this report:
- It’s highly confidential, so we’ll want to know who will be present upon delivery
- We’ll deliver and explain the report in person
Chief Financial Officer
We recognize that your company may or may not need a full-time chief financial officer. We will address that issue when we deliver and explain The Strategy GamePlan™.