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How We Stay Organized…Behind the Scenes.

6/08/19

It isn’t uncommon for me (Molly) to be asked, “How do you possibly run that many businesses and manage home life?” Well honestly, it’s simple, you need to be organized and have a system in place. I am not saying that every closest in my house is perfectly organized, that my businesses are flawless, and I am far from Super Mom, but most everything in our business has a place and my kids know their stuff needs to be put away at the end of the night.

I currently run four businesses. That’s right! I handle the behind the scenes administrative work that most business owners dread. At MVCO, Victoria and I play our roles, mine is more the admin and tax person, while she is our marketing director, and our fabulous assistant Stephanie helps with all of our daily communications. We hope this post today, will encourage you to become more organized and enjoy being in the office. Because when it comes to business organization, I thrive on it.

The first thing when setting up your office, you want it to be inviting and organized. If it is a total mess, with piles of paper everywhere, you are not going to want to go in it. You might want to consider painting the walls a neutral color that is relaxing and not too bright or neon in color. If your workspace allows for it, consider a soothing candle or Scentsy warmer to set the mood. Obviously, if you are in your own home you can have these items, but at a business, they may not allow it. I personally use Scentsy, an open flame around two young boys is asking for trouble. I also like to decorate the space with a flower or plant. I use fake plants because I can’t keep those things alive. ๐Ÿ™‚

Next step is to design your workspace. Look at the space, large or small, and consider what you need to do your job. In my space, I need a desk, computer, filing cabinet, phone, and a chair. Most business owners need all of these just to get started. The first time I designed my office, I was new in business, didn’t have a lot of money to spend on designing my office. I bought a dining room table at a yard sale along with a hutch and painted them. I bought a few filing cabinets from Amazon. It wasn’t much but I was proud of it and I spent hundreds of hours there just working on our business. As we continued to grow, I was able to make changes to my office that would continue to help me stay organized, reflect who I was as a business owner and Mom. My office still continues to give me the feels when I walk in. Which….makes me want to work in there EVERY day! Once I step in, I am in work mode and you usually won’t find me stray away except for lunchtime. Yes, I take lunch just like any other business professional. This is my opportunity to take a break, go for a walk, catch up on a show while eating a quick lunch. Then back to the grind. Below you will see my very first office and what it looks like today.

My first office.
My office now. ๐Ÿ™‚
I painted all the walls a neutral color.
I bought these filing cabinets on Amazon. It was a pain to put together, but they help me stay organized.
How cute is my Scentsy Warmer? It got this from a past client and it is perfect for my space.
Yes, that flower is fake, but it makes me happy.
Surround yourself with items in your office that make you proud. Such as awards or thank you letters from your past clients. And yes, that plant is also fake. ๐Ÿ™‚

Every business is different, but they all pretty much need the same tools like I meantioned earlier in my post. But, with that being said and if you are still following along, let me tell you how I continue to stay on top of my admin work.

First thing first, create a workstation system that allows you to access things that you use or need on a daily business. I got this cute box at Marshall’s and it holds all of my writing tools, business cards, planners and I added a filing system to the back for daily task. Although I have filing cabinets, this allows me to access files I use daily. For instance, having a file for bills, invoicing, deposits, and to file away in the larger cabinets on another day. My goal is that I want to be able to put my hands on something within minutes of someone asking for it. That means organizing your filing system. Make each drawer of your filing cabinet for different parts of your business and clearly mark each drawer and file folder. Create a drawer for Corp documents, taxes, utilities, open and closed invoicing and contracts. This list can go on depending on your type of business. This can even relate to your home filing system.

Above I talked about my planner. We have been in business since 2011 and I can not even count how many cute notebooks, and planners we printed just so that we could do our job. We felt like we were in high school again carrying a huge backpack to work everyday just so we could access our daily plans and notes. We were honestly tired of it. So, Victoria and I designed a planner that is perfect for anyone in business. Of course we called out the photographers planner, but we can customize them for your business needs too. This planner has everything from booked upcoming events, consult references, past year refelctions, calendar with sections for to do, goal setting and social media check list. We have a section for notes and so many other helpful pages. This book goes everywhere with us. It is one of the most important things that keeps us on track. If you are looking for the perfect planner for your business, we offer them for $40 and they can be customized to your business and even have your own photo on the front. ๐Ÿ™‚ On top of our planner we also use HoneyBook that helps us stay on track with our couples with emails, contracts, invoicing and so many other things. Click here to learn more and get 50% off should you use them. This platform is great for the wedding industry. If you are not in the wedding industry there are so many other platforms that can do the same thing. We use Quickbooks as well to stay on top of all of our coding (which means categorizing your expenses and income), sales tax and end year reports. To learn more and click here and if you use our referral code you will get 50% off and a $50 visa gift card for signing up!

Next up is the relaxing portion of our business. Who doesn’t love shredding mail? My kids even love it and it is a simple task for anyone to do. In business we have a lot of informtaion that needs to be protected from people who want to steal it. From personal experience, this does happen and can happen to you. Don’t think it won’t. If there is anything that includes any personal information about you or someone else, shred it. If your junk mail says you have been preapproved for a credit card with a limit of 20K, and you are not interested, shred it…because that is gold to a thief. The shredder below, I bought at Staples, it is small and fits right in the corner of my office and it allows me to shred paper, junk mail, cds, credit cards and more.

How do we prepare for our accoutant? As mentioned above we use Quickbooks to help us code, print our end-year reports so that we can send it off to our accountant. Hiring the right accountant is also key. You want someone who has gone to school for it and knows what they are doing. We have seen what can happen when you don’t hire the right person. An audit is the last thing you want. We currently use Integrated Tax Consultants and they have been amazing. Sarah, the owner, has taught me so much about being organized and helping me overcome my fear of Quickbooks. She answers your questions professionally and she also sends out this amazing packet each year to prep you for your taxes that way when you walk in you have everything she needs. What I have done, is I buy a new notebook every year for the company and that is where I put all the documents throughout the year that I know she will need. To learn more about setting up the perfect book to keep you organized and ready for your accountant, contact us.

And lastly, at the end of the day, clear your desk. Use that filing system to create a file for items that need your attention the next day. That way when you walk into your office the next day, it is uncluttered and you will not dread walking into a mess. ๐Ÿ™‚

Thank you so much for reading along…if you made it this far. We hope that this post will make you change your thinking a bit in the office and make you just a little more organized. If you want to learn some more tips and tricks because we have so many more…inquire with us for a business mentoring session.

Have a wonderful weekend! We are off to celebrate to couples as they become Mr & Mrs.!

xo

Molly & Victoria

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