I am finally on the road again after a month and a half. This week it was ZingTrain in Ann Arbor Michigan and then Harvard Business Review Press in Boston. It was hard to get out this time of year, we have lots of snow in Utah. My favorite resort Snowbasin has over 140 inches. It was a tough time to go but finance waits no one.
At ZingTrain I did a half day quick session on the financial statements. ZingTrain is part of the Zingerman’s family of businesses. Zingerman’s is a family of food based businesses, ten of them in fact. Their food offerings are world class. So much so that they train other food based businesses how to do it right. From time to time I visit to teach basic finance. Yep restaurants and bakeries have to make a profit too.
This session was large and loaded with lots of small business people from a lot of different businesses. This is second time doing a public session for ZingTrain. both times they filled the room. At BLI we have always thought public classes were not financially viable but ZingTrain is proving me wrong.
The group wanted to talk cash flow. Cash flow is often much more important to small businesses than revenue and profit. Yet most managers and business leaders focus on the income statement. One of my goals is to shift that focus one class at a time. Profit and revenue are great until you miss payroll.
It was a good session, good food, and good fun. I love the folks at Zingermans. If you ever are in Ann Arbor pay them a visit. You won’t go away hungry.
After the ZingTrain experience it was on to Boston for a live Facebook chat with my publisher Harvard Business Review Press. That was a new experience, it’s a social media way to get the finance message out. I was nervous going in but really enjoyed the experience. I taught basic income statement to the masses, it was good. Pretty low-key and we were able to get through the high points of the P & L aka income statement (we like to use different terms for the same thing in the finance and accounting world). My favorite EBITDA joke was a hit. If you haven’t experienced that I feel sorry for you. Watch the chat here.
I think this Facebook live chat is a good format for us. Now that I’ve done it I feel more comfortable. I’m sure it also helped Harvard sell some of my books. So I think that was a win win. To sum it all up it really was two great days of finance.