Connect with us

David Brown

This Exercise Will Tell You Exactly Which Day of The Year You’ll Start Taking Money Home

mm

Published

on

What’s your favorite day of the year? There are a lot of options to enjoy across the annual calendar, but one in particular often goes unheralded: Tax Freedom Day.

Each year, the Tax Foundation calculates how many days the average American has to work in order to cover their tax liability. This year, Tax Freedom Day occurred on April 19th. So from that point forward, every dollar, on average, you earn as profit is for yourself, not Uncle Sam.

Or is it? Tax is just one of the obligations a business has to meet. If you are going to work out when you’ve worked off your tax bill, why not some of your other costs?

The Tax Foundation has worked out the Tax Freedom Day based on an approximate average tax rate of 29 percent. That gets you to around the 107th day of the year, or early- to mid-April. As a business owner, we would want to look at our costs relative to income, not relative to profit — after all, some expenses may be greater than the amount the business owner takes home, so it’s not the best way to apportion your costs.

Let’s say your net profit is normally 10 percent of your total income. This would mean that tax would represent 2.9 percent of your total sales or income, rather than 29 percent of your profit. So your tax would be covered by income after 2.9 percent of the year, which means approximately 11 days of average annual income. 

If you achieve a 50 percent gross profit, then it will take you half a year to earn enough average annual income to cover the cost of the goods you sell. Depending on what percentage of your costs are attributable to different aspects of your business, you can work out how long you need to work to meet some of your other business obligations.

Advertisement

For example; if wages represent 16 percent of your total income, then you will need 58 days of average annual income (365 days x 16 percent) to meet your staffing costs. If rent is 10 percent, then you’d be looking at around 36 days to meet this obligation. Of course, this is an extremely simplistic guideline, but it’s an interesting scenario to see who gets your money each day!

Of course at 10 percent profitability, and assuming an average income that is consistent each day, you would have to work until around Nov. 24. You can do the real exercise yourself and determine just when your profitability arrives. Given the proportion of income that skews toward December, it’s more likely that your Profit Freedom Day will be sometime after the middle of December.

So focus on cutting your costs and raising your margin — the sooner you can start keeping that income for yourself, the better it will be! 

David Brown is president of the Edge Retail Academy, a force in jewelry industry business consulting, sell-through data and vendor solutions. David and his team are dedicated to providing business owners with information and strategies to improve sales and profits. Reach him at david@edgeretailacademy.com

Advertisement

SPONSORED VIDEO

Wilkerson Testimonials

Aging Inventory Sale? There’s a Science to Maximizing Results

Craig Husar, president of Lyle Husar Designs of Milwaukee, WI, has tried to organize sales of his aging inventory before he let Wilkerson do one for him. “If it had been up to me, I probably would have used the same methods I’ve always used and I would have gotten the same results I’ve always been disappointed with,” he says. After Wilkerson, there’s no going back. “Everything Wilkerson brought to the table just elevated this event higher than anything I’ve ever experienced before.”

Promoted Headlines

David Brown

Five Steps To Make Your Business More Salable

Build net profit and control your inventory tightly.

mm

Published

on

AFTER YEARS OF hard work building up an asset that they hoped would provide for them in retirement, many business owners are finding there is nothing left at the end of the day when they come to cash in their chips. And we’re not just talking businesses that struggle — I’m talking about businesses that are making a very healthy profit each year.

How many of you know a fellow store owner who has been in this situation? I had friends recently close down at the end of December in a store that had traded for over four decades and was making a large six-figure profit. They were in their 70s, had decided to quit but could not find a buyer interested in taking over their store. Sadly, this scenario is far too common.

Video: 3 Millennial Couples Reveal Their True Thoughts On Lab-Grown Diamonds
Headlines

Video: 3 Millennial Couples Reveal Their True Thoughts On Lab-Grown Diamonds

Video: How to Turn Prospects Into Paying Jewelry Customers
Jim Ackerman

Video: How to Turn Prospects Into Paying Jewelry Customers

Video: Gene the Jeweler Explains How to Fire People
Gene the Jeweler

Video: Gene the Jeweler Explains How to Fire People

Here are five steps you can take to help this situation:

1. Drive every possible dollar of net profit. Most business owners generally try to minimize their net profit to reduce tax, but this ends up costing them as they approach retirement. Jewelry stores are bought and sold nowadays based on a multiplier of net profit, so every dollar could be worth $4-6 to them when they sell … not to mention they can use that net profit to retire debt or create retirement wealth while they still own the business.

2. Establish and achieve an optimum inventory level … one that delivers maximum GMROI while still satisfying your customers. Most stores are heavily over-inventoried, and the store is not an asset unless it generates turn and margin. Many are emotionally invested in their inventory, but no prospective buyer is going to want their old stock at any price. Nor do customers. Guess what is left after a successful GOB? The old stuff!

If Business A has $100,000 of profit on $400,000 of inventory, and Business B has $100,000 on $700,000, then both would sell for the same multiplier of profit. Store B may well be left with either an inflated value that would put a buyer off because they have inventory to clear, or be forced to find a way of disposing of the surplus product.

3. Transition the owners’ personal skills and responsibilities from “business operator” to “business owner.” No one wants to buy a business (or certainly not at full price) where the current owner is the No. 1 asset in the business (i.e., does a lot of personal sales, buys all of the inventory, does the marketing, is the main bench jeweler, etc.). There is too much uncertainty about what will happen to the performance of the business the day after the highly involved owner departs.

4. Build a strong team. Sometimes this involves outsourcing such things as repairs, custom design, marketing, social media, bookkeeping, etc. to effectively handle all day-to-day responsibilities. Note: this takes time, patience and perseverance.

5. Be visible online and on social media … it’s one of the first places prospective buyers will look.

In a market where supply exceeds demand, you need to give yourself a competitive advantage if you want to cash in that nest egg. It can happen, but it requires a strong level of grooming and preparation. The return, however, is well worth it.

Continue Reading

David Brown

How to Make The Most of Your Department Reports

Allocating the appropriate time, money and space to each department is critical to success.

mm

Published

on

DEPENDING ON THE TYPE of business you run, chances are your sales will be coming from perhaps 30 or 40 different departments across your store. Some, such as bridal, are more obvious. Others, such as silver earrings, may not make a big difference — yet it’s important to understand the contribution from each department and where it fits into the overall performance of your store.

A department report in order of sales will reveal the biggest contributors, and it should come as no surprise to know that the top 5 or 6 departments might be contributing 50 percent or more of your storewide sales. What might surprise you is which departments make up the top 5 or 6. Take a guess now and then compare it to your actual results; chances are you’ll see at least one department that wasn’t in your estimate.

Podcast: Would Your Customer Drive Hundreds of Miles for a Lab-Created Diamond?
JimmyCast

Podcast: Would Your Customer Drive Hundreds of Miles for a Lab-Created Diamond?

Podcast: Luxury Retailer Nick Linca Drops Into ‘The Barb Wire’
The Barb Wire

Podcast: Luxury Retailer Nick Linca Drops Into ‘The Barb Wire’

Podcast: When Is It Time to Let an Underperforming Employee Go?
JimmyCast

Podcast: When Is It Time to Let an Underperforming Employee Go?

Knowing this will enable you to allocate your resources towards these areas. These resources are, in no order of importance:

1. Time
2. Money
3. Space

Time refers to the energy you and your staff devote, both physically and mentally, to this area of your business. You might have a love of watches and enjoy spending time checking out the latest models available, but if watches represent 3 percent of your sales, this category doesn’t warrant a lot of effort.

Money will predominantly be spent on two fronts: one is your inventory, while the other is marketing. Is the inventory you carry in each department relevant to that department’s contribution to your sales and profitability? If not, consider reallocating it. Are you running ads for an area of your business that is neither a significant contributor to sales or profit? Do you allocate your marketing spend by area based on what product you are advertising? It’s not unusual to find a business spending 90 percent of its marketing on diamonds when that category represents only 30 percent of sales.

Space refers to how you allocate the merchandise within your store. Are your best sellers front and center? If your store is 50 percent bridal, does your merchandising say this when your customers walk into your store?

Review your departmental contribution and determine how you are allocating your resources of time, money and space across each area. Make a decision to rebalance each area as required so it more closely aligns to your store’s performance. The exception to this is if you are hoping to grow a particular area, in which case your resources should align with your anticipated results and performance.

Continue Reading

David Brown

What Business Owners Can Learn from Abraham Lincoln’s Failures

He would never have been in position to succeed if he hadn’t failed first.

mm

Published

on

WE ARE CONDITIONED BY society to fear failure. Our education system defines performance as “getting the answer correct.” This result-based measurement is an effective method for assessing a level of knowledge, but it doesn’t encourage the hands-on learning process so necessary to develop true understanding and retaining of information — nor encourage the discovery of new knowledge.

Sadly, this aversion to getting things wrong starts at an early age and continues our whole life. Despite the copious number of successful people who have failed spectacularly before achieving success, we still attempt to follow a path that has more to do with avoiding ignominy than with enjoying the benefits of stretching ourselves into uncharted territory.

Podcast: Would Your Customer Drive Hundreds of Miles for a Lab-Created Diamond?
JimmyCast

Podcast: Would Your Customer Drive Hundreds of Miles for a Lab-Created Diamond?

Podcast: Luxury Retailer Nick Linca Drops Into ‘The Barb Wire’
The Barb Wire

Podcast: Luxury Retailer Nick Linca Drops Into ‘The Barb Wire’

Podcast: When Is It Time to Let an Underperforming Employee Go?
JimmyCast

Podcast: When Is It Time to Let an Underperforming Employee Go?

Abraham Lincoln never feared failure — he could little afford to. His list of unsuccessful endeavors in both business and politics would have forced a lesser man to give up. Here are just some of his “failures.”

1831: Failed in business.
1832: Ran for state legislature — lost.
1832: Also lost his job — wanted to go to law school but couldn’t get in.
1833: Borrowed some money from a friend to begin a business, and by the end of the year was bankrupt. He spent the next 17 years paying off this debt.
1838: Sought to become speaker of the state legislature — defeated.
1840: Sought to become elector — defeated.
1843: Ran for Congress — lost.
1846: Ran for Congress again — this time he won — went to Washington and did a good job.
1848: Ran for re-election to Congress — lost.
1849: Sought the job of land officer in his home state — rejected.
1854: Ran for Senate of the United States — lost.
1856: Sought the vice-presidential nomination at his party’s national convention — got less than 100 votes.
1858: Ran for U.S. Senate again — again he lost.
1860: Elected president of the United States.

What sort of president would Lincoln have become if he had not had his failures? Had his life been a succession of unbridled achievements, would he have had the fortitude or fighting qualities to drag the country through its toughest challenge ever? Or would he have been ill-prepared for the physical and mental battle the presidency required? I believe his history of failing provided him with the steel and determination he needed to see the job through. Had he not “failed” so many times, he would not have become the man he was — and the history of the United States may have looked sharply different.

Learning to fail helps you overcome the fear of testing your boundaries and ultimately helps you grow and succeed. When it happens, embrace it for the lessons it can teach.

Continue Reading

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

Subscribe


BULLETINS

INSTORE helps you become a better jeweler
with the biggest daily news headlines and useful tips.
(Mailed 5x per week.)

Latest Classifieds

Most Popular