Gaining Perspective On Your Business Finances With Nev Harris

Jennifer and Nev talk about making Manhattans, building a personal brand, and helping agencies understand their finances and make more money.

Seeking Satisfaction 022 Nev Harris
Seeking Satisfaction
Gaining Perspective On Your Business Finances With Nev Harris

Show Notes

When you’re in a room with Nev Harris or you’re seated at his table at dinner, you’re never going to be bored or experience a lull in the conversation. He is a passionate, witty, energetic finance expert — the exact opposite of the boring, buttoned-up, stuffiness you might expect when you hear the term finance expert.

I met Nev at CaboPress — a mastermind-style event hosted by my friend Chris Lema — and when it comes to money, he breaks things down to the simplest levels so anyone can get the perspective they need to build a profitable business with less stress.

Nev Harris Jumping In Front Of A Blue and Purple Wall Of Graffiti

On the podcast, Nev and I talk about his experience building and managing an agency. We talk about burnout and exhaustion, the financial numbers every agency owner must pay attention to, and the perfect storm of events that led Nev to walk a new entrepreneurial path.

We also talk about:

  • How he decided to build a personal brand around financial consulting for agencies (hint: it wasn’t his idea).
  • The difference understanding your numbers can make in how you make decisions and what your profit margins are.
  • Why profit is secret to making a bigger impact in the world.

And of course, we get the story behind his claim to fame as an award-winning Manhattan-maker.

I can’t wait for you to listen!

Mentioned Sites, Resources, And Tools:

Get To Know Nev Harris

Nev Harris

Nev Harris shows agency owners where profit is hiding in their businesses. After earning an economics degree and an MBA in Finance at Pitt and Duquesne, Nev followed his entrepreneurial spirit and founded a digital agency he ran for nearly 10 years. His down-to-earth take on finances led him to start an agency consultancy and a popular podcast — Profit And Impact.

Nev believes finance doesn’t need to be confusing, boring, or something you do behind closed doors with an accountant who might as well be speaking another language. As the guy they call when they want to talk money without putting the audience to sleep, his expertise has been featured in numerous national media outlets.

You can learn more at and connect with Nev on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

Extra Minutes Training With Nev Harris

Seeking Satisfaction Extra Minutes 022 Nev Harris

To hear more from Nev and learn not only how you can make more strategic decisions when it comes to your business, finances, and your money but also why your bank account might not reflect how hard you work even if you’re having a good month, check out the Seeking Satisfaction Extra Minutes Membership.

Members receive Extra Minutes bonus training from Jennifer and podcast guests like Nev that provide valuable insights and lessons to help you build a better business for only $15/month.

Nev’s Extra Minutes training continues the conversation from the podcast, going into more detail on the concepts of sales, costs, profit, and efficiency, and what to track and pay attention to so you always have a pulse on the financial health of your business.

Learn More

Conversation Transcript

Nev Harris:

Paying close attention to your finances allows you to make a much greater profit that allows you to then make a much greater impact. And the reason we do this is the impact the mark we make on the world.

Jennifer Bourn:

Welcome to Seeking Satisfaction, a podcast that encourages you to live inspired, embrace imperfection, and seek satisfaction. I’m your host, Jennifer Bourn, freelance business mentor, course creator, and agency owner.

Today, I work with clients I love, do fulfilling work, and have the freedom to live the life of my choosing. But things weren’t always this rosy, which is why this show looks at the systems that power successful businesses and fulfilled lives, going behind the scenes with entrepreneurs, freelancers, and professionals, to discover how they juggle work and life, clients and kids, handle stress, and tackle unexpected challenges.

If you are seeking greater satisfaction in your work and life, you are in the right place.

Today, I’m here with Nev Harris, agency owner, award-winning Manhattan maker, Taylor Swift fan ( me too), and an agency finance expert who helps owners better understand the language of money. Thanks for joining me Nev.

Nev Harris:

Well, thank you for having me. And, you made me just want to quit everything you said before and do exactly what you’re doing because you seem to have it all figured out.

Jennifer Bourn:

Well, we look like that on the front end of things, but oftentimes there’s a hot mess behind the scenes. So, I think that’s true for everybody, right? As we put our best foot forward and we give our best to the world. And sometimes it’s all chaos behind the scenes. So, I think I can safely say if that’s you, we’re all in the same boat.

Now, before we get started, I want to hear about that cocktail award.

Nev Harris:

Well, my dad, he would always have a drink. I’ve never seen my dad drunk, but he always like to make a drink. And I was always curious because, you know, I love my dad. He was like my best friend. So, from an early age I was learning how to make drinks and all through college, I was torturing my friends, making drinks — So if I made a drink, somebody was drinking it, no matter how bad it was.

And then we went to a big, thing that my friend got invited to by a couple national beverage companies and cigar companies and they were having a Manhattan contest and I entered it.

And I was the only non-bartender in this contest and I won. It was blind. It was judged and everything like that. So it was really cool.

Nev Harris

Jennifer Bourn:

What a fun tribute to your dad. I love that.

Now, you ran an agency for eight years, but you’ve always been an entrepreneur. What has your professional path looked like?

Nev Harris:

So, I’ll go back to, when this all started. So I had the agency, and it was going well for a while and I achieved what I thought were my dreams — 11 employees, really good money, and everything like that. And then, it was November 30th, 2018 and I’m in Atlanta, okay, and it’s 70 some degrees in Atlanta, and I’m sitting on this restaurant patio with my friend, and I’m like super excited banging out this idea for Nev Harris, and that was the impetus to start why I’m here.

But here’s the thing though:

Like, in the last two months my dad had just died, my girlfriend decided that she didn’t want to be there for the grief and everything like that, so she took my dog and ran. And then at that point, I was realizing that I really didn’t enjoy the life I had built with my agency.

And I pull myself together, I sit down, and I look at my computer and there’s always one number I look at every day and it tells me the state of my agency. And I looked at it that day and it told me my team had been slacking.

And, if I was to be completely honest, I hadn’t been looking at it every day because, you know, I was dealing with everything that had just happened the last couple of months. And what I realized is people were just not doing the work and if things continued like this, we were going to end the year bad.

So, I called up my friend April, and I just wanted to complain. I just wanted to commiserate and it’s great to have friends like that. Well, an hour later, you know, she had booked an Airbnb and I had a plane ticket for the next day.

We were sitting around like just talking with a bottle of wine — well actually, I’m the one drinking the bottom wine — and she tells me all this stuff I’ve been helping her out with for years. She tells me how eye-opening was and how helpful it is for her to grow her agency, and all this advice I give her on money and I should start a business helping agency owners. And when you’re drunk, every idea sounds like a great idea so I’m like, “Yeah, let’s do that.”

So fast forward six months, I haven’t done anything really, except help some friends.

And I was also really burned outta my agency. I was ready to give it up. I was done. And then I was calling my friend again because, you know, having a great support system’s really important.

She’s a personal branding genius who actually invented the brand for Nev Harris because she said I’d been so instrumental in taking her from a agency owner making 200 some thousand in revenue with just two employees, to within a year, 500,000 some in revenue and six employees. And, the only thing she told me is, “Don’t waste it. You have to do something with this.”

So um, I just packaged up all the systems I use to run my agency in my businesses, and you know, now I help other agency owners understand those systems and find the hidden profit in their businesses.

Jennifer Bourn:

Well, I think there were a couple of really interesting points in that story that are really relatable. First, our definition of what we think success is going to be and what we think is going to make us happy doesn’t always necessarily perform the way that we think. So, it was really interesting that you reached this point of success with your agency and then realized I’m burnt out and I’m not as happy as I thought I would be here.

I reached a really similar point in my business. I remember sitting out in the backyard with my husband when we’re talking through business and I’m burnt out and I’m exhausted and I’m tired.

And I just said, “I hate the business that I’ve built and I wanna quit.” Like, find somebody else I’m out. And he had joined my business full time And he’s like, “Oh, whoa, whoa, whoa, wait a second, Jen. I don’t think that extreme is the answer. I think maybe rethinking how we’re doing things in the systems and the processes and what we’re doing to run the business is the answer.”

So, it’s really interesting to hear you go through that similar thing. And then having a side hustle or a passion project, but being so busy doing the agency work that that passion project sits for a little bit.

I remember having the conversation with my husband: “I spend every day building everybody else’s dreams and everybody else’s empires and I just want a little bit of time to build my own.” And I too found myself so busy I didn’t do anything for a while and I was so unsatisfied with that.

And the fact that you had a friend that believed in you that gave you that push and helped you build that brand as a tribute to the impact that your work has had. And I love that that really gave you that push to lean into the Nev Harris brand — educating agency owners and helping them understand their money more.

So, I wanna talk more about that — about effort expended and revenue earned. Because let’s face it, there is a super common problem in the freelancing world, in the agency world, that I’m working really, really hard but I’m not necessarily earning revenue aligned with how hard we’re working. How do we fix this?

Nev Harris:

So, one of the ratios I teach my clients is your ratio. And it’s the amount of time you’re doing the work of the business divided by your total amount of time working. And what this ratio says, if it’s really high, you’re spending all your time doing the work of the business, and then you never have the ability to grow your business.

But the problem is, and here’s what I realized with my clients: they feel that if they’re not doing the work of the business, they’re lazy. Like, people will throw around the title CEO all day long, and fine if you want to call yourself the CEO of a one person company, but act like it. Because the CEO is not going down there to the assembly line and drilling in screws.

So I think when we talk about expenditure versus profit, you can’t scale your hours. What you can scale is the impact and the results you get from those hours. If that answers your question.

Jennifer Bourn:

It does. And I wanna talk about the finance side. That’s really where your brilliance comes into play — in helping agency owners and freelancers understand the financial health of their business.

One, why is it so important to have a clear understanding of that financial health? And then two, how does that understanding benefit your business and you as a business owner?

Nev Harris:

Here’s the thing: We don’t look at our finances for the sake of looking at our finances because, you know, even for me, that’s pretty boring. So, we want to look at our finances because they help us make better decisions. And then if we’re making better decisions, then we’re making more profitable decisions, and then we’re having less stress, we’re having more freedom in our life, and that’s the reason we started our business anyways.

So, our finances are means to the end of what we want from our business. And so how does that help? Let me tell you a story about this.

At my girlfriend’s house, she had this glass coffee table and it was in the center of the room. When you left her bedroom, you walked through the living room, and then you went down a hall to get to the bathroom. Well, when I’d get up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom, half the time, I’d kick that coffee table and knock the stuff off the coffee table. The dog would jump up. She would jump up and start yelling at me. And the reason I did this is I was walking through there in the dark.

And that’s what happens in our business. We’re making decisions, we’re deciding where to walk with our business in the dark, and we hit coffee tables all the time. When we don’t have insight into our business, when it’s just dark space, you know, we don’t make the most efficient decisions.

Like my friend that actually designed the website my big thing with her is she always wanted to make her decisions based on gut feelings. Okay. Based on the way she felt about something.

And there is — I love psychology and I love neat little tricks like this — something called a Stroop Test. I don’t know if you’ve heard of that but you could do this after the podcast.

Write down these three colors: blue, red, and orange. But write down blue with a green pen, write down red with a yellow pen, and write down orange with a purple pen.

Jennifer Bourn:

That would irritate the crap out of me.

Nev Harris:

Yes, it does. And I will tell you this you will stutter. You will pause. you will wanna say green instead of blue in your mind. You know that word is blue but your gut is telling you green because what you’re perceiving is green.

So, what this tells us is that our gut feelings — our gut instincts — can mislead us a lot.

It’s just like when you go to the casino. You walk up to play roulette and there’s that board, and it lists all the past numbers. Useless information. It means nothing. It’s completely random but you’re going to see red nine came up three times. You’re either going to think to yourself, “Oh, I don’t want to play red nine because it’s already come up enough,” or “Red nine’s hot. I’m gonna play it.” It means nothing. Our gut is telling us there’s something special about red nine when the facts are, there’s nothing special, it’s all random.

So, this is what we do when we’re running our business without looking at our numbers. We’re just going off a gut instinct, stumbling around in the dark.

Jennifer Bourn:

That’s such a good way to think about it and I’ve never thought about it that way before. But yeah, if you just turn on the lights and you have the right information, you can avoid those obstacles and make better decisions.

Now, when it comes to finances though, it’s complicated. There are a lot of big words. There are a lot of things that agency owners have to keep track of. Accounts receivable, accruals, amortization, all these things. How do you know what the important things are to track and look at and what maybe isn’t as important?

Nev Harris:

That’s an excellent question. Let me relate it back to the agency space. This is where I think, um, I have a unique ability to blend the two.

So I got my MBA in finance and got a job and they were like, “Okay, sit in this small little room that was like a closet and stare at spreadsheets for 10 hours a day,” and it’s just boring and it gets overwhelming and everything like that.

So, here’s the way I look at this stuff: Think of it as Google analytics. Tons of great data in there but overwhelming. I run an agency, you know, and I had somebody pick out “Nev, look at these three things. Forget the thousand other pieces of data that are generated every day”. And just look at these three things. And I do that. I’m like, “Okay, here’s what I need to change and here’s what I need to do.” And that’s turning the overwhelm of data we have into actionable information.

You’re like, “That’s great but what do I do?”

So, I put it in the framework of the alien, the aircraft, and the ant and how they view the exact same thing. So, take a patch of grass:

  • The alien is going to look at that patch of grass and he’s going to see the earth spinning as a whole. So his perspective is massive. His level of detail is extremely small and he takes in the whole picture in a second.
  • The aircraft is looking at that grass and it’s seeing roads and yards — and I love looking out the window on an airplane and seeing it all divided up. And so there’s more detail, like, that’s grass, that’s a road, that’s a house so it takes a little longer to get over that patch of grass.
  • Now the ant, he’s on the ground and that grass looks huge. And for him, to cover that ground takes a long time but he covers it in immense detail. I mean, he knows every pebble that’s in that grass and everything like that.

And that’s how we can approach our finances. So we want to know:

  • The alien level — what time period is happening the past present future.
  • The aircraft level — what is happening with our, sales, our costs, our profit, or the efficiency of our team?
  • And the ant level — all the questions we need to answer to get actual information.

Now, the key here is what agency owners need to do. They need to forget about the financial statements. They need to forget about all the stuff that people say you need to know about finances — all this archaic language that I think is basically designed to confuse people. And they need to take ant level knowledge but alien level perspective and how you do that is by using KPIs.

You pack all that information available into one number.

When I was running my agency on a daily basis, the one number I looked at and the number from my story was taking your team’s time and dividing that by your team’s billable hours. Your team’s time is the money you were putting out. The billable hours are the money you were bringing in.

And so if 70% of your team’s time was on client projects, and you tracked this over time, you could pretty much say, “Hey, I know things are running smoothly. I know if my pricing’s right if my costs are right, everything’s gonna turn out right.”

So, what I like to say is things should be simple, fast, but deep. And so that number right there is a simple math equation. And it’s one number that you’re looking at. It takes you 10 seconds but it’s so immense in what it tells you about the operations of your business.

So that’s the alien level and I say do the alien level every day.

Then, every month or every quarter, get down to the airplane level where you’re looking at more specifics — numbers for sales, numbers for cost, numbers for profit, numbers for efficiency.

Those numbers in the airplane level, again, come from the ant level, but we make simplified numbers out of all the stuff that the ant finds out.

Jennifer Bourn:

That’s interesting that the main number is the number of hours your team has divided by the number of billable hours. That is so simple. But it does give you such great insight on what’s going on. Now, you said an acronym. I would love for you to explain what it means for people who might be listening.

That don’t know what it means, or it’s a new term for them. KPIs. Explain what KPIs are and what KPIs you should be looking at in your business.

Nev Harris:

So KPI stands for Key Performance Indicator and that’s as technical as I ever speak.

It’s a broad term used in many, many industries. in life, we have a ton of performance indicators, Google Analytics gives you a bunch of performance indicators.

I had a friend who did these TikTok videos and they did this TikTok that went absolutely viral. They did a whole bunch of stuff in Disney. They stayed at Disney for a year and they posted and people were so cruel to them. Like they did this outta their pocket, and people call ’em trust fund babies and what it looks like to have first world problems. And this is something they saved up for and a project they wanted to do. It was a passion project kind of thing.

Going viral, if that was the goal, it was wrong because those weren’t their people. So they scaled down their video. The rest of their videos received 10% of that reach but they were targeted to the right people.

So, that is the difference — knowing what your goal is, what your target is. And then you take a performance indicator and make it specific to what you’re trying to achieve.

Now, what do I mean by all that? How do I make it actionable?

I shared with you four areas of your business sales, costs, revenue, and efficiency. Now, it’s taking one of those areas and focusing on them for the next quarter.

  • Your sales involve your marketing expenses. How is your marketing expense performing? How is your sales pipeline looking? How is the overall revenue of your business?
  • And then costs, it’s like, are costs out of control? Do we need to raise our prices?
  • And profit is the money we bring in. Do we need to fine-tune stuff so that we’re making more money? Profit is like you have a bucket but there are holes in your bucket and the water keeps on leaking out of your bucket. That’s stuff you’re leaving on the table that is yours but it’s leaking out because you’re not paying attention to it.
  • And then there’s efficiency. Here are all our resources. How are we using them?

This is what I helped my friend Alyssa with greatly. She had a product that was responsible for 64% of her revenue, but 12% of her profit. And she had another product that was responsible for 81% profit margin, but she only, 11% of and she was gonna get rid of that because she says, oh, we don’t do much of this, it’s a waste of time.”

I said it’s the exact opposite. I said, “Quit, putting your time, attention, and resources to that product. That’s only making you 12%. It’s a vanity number Put it towards this product and level up this product.” And that was being an OBM. And that’s how she went from about 270,000 to right over 500,000 with an insanely high profit margin.

Jennifer Bourn:

Well, that is a dynamic that happens in business all the time. If you’re only looking at total revenue coming in, and you’re not looking at how much time it actually takes and how much effort it requires, and how many resources it’s pulling from your business, you’re not seeing the whole picture.

So, I love that you point that out and really say, to take a look at that whole big picture to get a good idea of what’s actually happening. And your most profitable offer might not be the one that you think it is.

Nev Harris:

Yeah. Give me an agency that has a hundred thousand dollars worth of revenue versus a gas station with a million dollars worth of revenue because that gas station is making about 2%. That’s their profit margin of a million dollars. An agency with a hundred thousand in revenue could easily have a profit margin of 70, 80%.

Jennifer Bourn:

You’re definitely not kidding there.

When I started going to industry events and conferences, so many times we’d walk away from a conversation where someone is sharing their revenue and the salary they were paying themselves, or the gross revenue versus net revenue. And we’re walking away thinking, “We’re doing pretty good.” Because making a million dollars gross, $500,000 gross, $300,000 gross, $100,000 gross — if your net is crap, it doesn’t matter.

We do this comparison game where we look at these businesses and think, “Oh my gosh, they have a million-dollar business.”

When I first got started, I was looking at these gurus and I was at a conference watching these two women walk on stage and get an award for hitting a million dollars that year. And I was like, “Wow.” And the woman sitting next to me who was in the mastermind group with them leans over and says, “They’re not even paying themselves $65,000 a year. It’s all money coming in and money going back out.” She’s like, “It’s not as impressive as you think.” That was mind-blowing to me at like, 28 years old. I couldn’t even fathom that.

Nev Harris:

I started all this because I wanted to give back to the agency community — the WordPress community — and the one thing I knew how to do that they seemed to be struggling on was their numbers. So, I helped people for years with this stuff.

So, when I decided to go hard with it COVID happened. All I had to do was reach out to people and say, “Hey, could you share this for me?” And they’re like, “For you Nev, yes.” If you give with an open heart, you will get back more than you give.

But the real point I wanted to make is I had another friend that I had worked with that was right under 500,000 revenue. And I said, “Look, our goal should be 750,000,” and they wanted to go to a million. And I said, no, I think 750,000 is a comfortable number.

Well, they, decided to not listen to most of my advice and they hit a million dollars, making less money than they made at right under 500,000. So they quadrupled their stress, the work they had to do, and all this other stuff. They had a miserable year.

Hit a million dollars, made less, and was so frazzled and burned out after that year, you know, I said, “Wouldn’t you have liked a hundred thousand more and 750,000 in revenue and a couple more vacations?”

Jennifer Bourn:

100%. Overall that has been the most eye-opening thing to me. Getting to work behind the scenes in so many internet guru businesses, you peek behind the curtain and it’s a hot mess too. Just like you listening. Just like me sometimes. Just like all of us.

And sometimes those top-line numbers can be really misleading. It doesn’t mean that’s what they’re taking home and it doesn’t mean what that’s what they’re earning. There’s so much more that goes into success.

And you mentioned it earlier, you said revenue is not the end, it’s the means to the end. When your goal is money, chances are you’re going to end up burnt out and exhausted and not as happy as you think. But when revenue leads to something greater and more meaningful — something that drives inner satisfaction — then that work becomes so much more worth it.

Nev Harris:

Yeah, as somebody who, in the beginning of their life, was very money motivated, I’ve learned that you can make profit and create impact and that you don’t have to choose between one or the other. When you’re making money, it allows you to have a much greater impact to do much more good in the world and do much more for your family, your team, your clients, causes you care about.

Paying close attention to your finances allows you to make a much greater profit that allows you to then make a much greater impact. And the reason we do this is the impact the mark we make on the world.

I will not let somebody set a monetary goal.

What is it in your business that you want? What is it in your personal life that you want? What do you need for that? What money do you need to get those resources to get you that goal?

What are you trying to accomplish in life and in business? And what do you need to get there? Money is just what bridges that gap.

Jennifer Bourn:

I love that. And it reminds me of a coach I worked with for a little while — she was a client of mine, Suzanne Evans, a brilliant business coach. She always said money isn’t the most important thing but it touches everything that is.

Everything that is important to you, your family, your livelihood, your children, paying for them to go to college, giving back to charities, supporting your communities, donating to a school. Everything that you want to do in life, everything that’s important to you — your ability to earn touches all of that.

So, when you get your numbers right, when you get your financials right, when you are making good profit in your business and you’re able to pay yourself and pay your team, that ripple effect touches all of the good that they want to do in the world and all of the things that are important to them.

Now, you work with agency owners and business owners privately, to get their finances dialed in and help them reach their goals. But you also have courses, right? And some self-study options that can help people better understand what’s happening with their money. You have the Seven Questions Course — tell me a little bit more about this particular course.

Nev Harris:

The seven questions course gives you seven basic questions to be able to turn those lights on. It’s for the person who, you know, they’ve been in business for a while and they’re around the one to $300,000 mark in revenue and they’re thinking to themselves, “Boy, I would like to know a little bit more about my finances, but it’s so confusing. I don’t have a lot of time. I need a simplified method to understand this stuff.” the course is about an hour long and then you get a worksheet with it.

My goal for all this stuff is help 10,000 agencies and freelancers understand their money.

  • If you’re making 30,000, I want to help you.
  • If you have a 3 million in revenue business and you’re making $600,000 a year and you want to pay me to work with you every week one on one, I’m there.
  • But if you’re just starting out, I have an ebook that’s $7.

Jennifer Bourn:

The bottom line is that by pricing things at an affordable level, you’re able to share your passion with people. But you’re also saying, “Look, you wanna make money, you gotta have a little skin in the game. Money begets money. You spend it and you put it out and it’s going to flow and it’s going to come back.

Now, I need to know, is there a tool, a thing you’ve discovered that you cannot live without?

Nev Harris:

I would say two things. One is outsourcing to maximize your output. The second is systems because systems maximize your time.

Jennifer Bourn:

Fantastic. I am a systems girl at heart, so that couldn’t make me happier to hear that.

Now, what do you do to make sure that you end each day feeling satisfied? What do you have in place that makes sure you don’t hit that point of burnout again?

Nev Harris:

So, every morning, except on the weekends, I get up and I go to the gym and it’s non-negotiable because I get outta bed, I get out of the house, I get around people, and it’s just the mental relief.

You know, I think it’s hard to remain positive all the time because at some point life is going to get hard and it will suck. I think giving ourselves the grace to realize that there is nothing wrong with you if you feel down on a certain day is important because I know this is something I struggle with. I’m a driven, successful, really positive, happy person but some days it’s just harder than others.

Jennifer Bourn:

Some days it is harder than others. And I love that reminder to give yourself grace and just acknowledge that it’s okay for some days to be harder than others. And it’s okay to not have the answer right away.

I had to deal with that a lot in the early years of my business, just telling myself, “I’ve just got to get through this week. I’ve just got to get through this month. I’ve just got to get through this phase of life.”

I started my business when I was pregnant with my second and I didn’t send my kids to daycare. And those first five years before Carter went to kindergarten were brutal. And we just kept saying, “All we’ve gotta do is make it untill Carter’s in kindergarten and then both my kids will be in school and everything will change.”

And it changes with the seasons of life. So I absolutely love that reminder to just say it’s okay.

So, one last piece of advice I would love to know and hear is if somebody is going to double-down on their finances — they’re going to take some time and sit down and look at things — where should they start?

Nev Harris:

So, I’m gonna start you where I think everybody has to start. It’s possible for any business, whether you’re making $30,000 a year or $300,000 a year, to increase profits.

But first, know we’re in a creative space and we’re right-brain people, and a lot of times we’re told that you can’t understand your money — leave it to the money people. And I say it’s okay that finance is confusing. You can use it as a tool to grow your agency.

Simple, fast, but deep. Financial statements, they’re for accountants. You really don’t have to dig that deep into them. What you need is financial KPIs because that is what’s best for busy agency owners. That’s gonna give you the information you need fast and get on with your day.

Unless you have a multimillion-dollar business, you don’t have a CFO, so don’t bog yourself down with that stuff. Just worry about the metrics that will help you guide your finances.

Jennifer Bourn:

And what are a couple of those metrics?

Nev Harris:

So, it all depends on what you want to accomplish. I’ll tell you some of the most popular ones.

Look at leads coming into your business, divided by the leads you’re closing because that’ll tell you how efficient your marketing is — your nurture process and your closing. That right there helps out with revenue.

Cost-wise and profit-wise, you want to look at your net profit margin And pay attention to that number. And if that number starts decreasing, that means your costs are increasing.

And one that people ignore a lot is cash flow ratios — because none of this works if you don’t have any money to pay your bills. Like, a hundred thousand dollars tomorrow is not helping you today. So, look at your bills coming due versus the cash that you have in the bank versus the cash that your clients owe you. So add

Jennifer Bourn:

Nice. So Nev, if people want to learn more about your courses, and your podcast, and get more information about working with you and learning from you, where should they go?

Nev Harris:

My website is the best place to find that information. And all over social media, I’m @thenevharris. I’m sporadically on social media, but you can always reach out to me there. I love to talk to people.

Jennifer Bourn:

Fantastic. Well, thank you so much for joining me and sharing your journey of seeking satisfaction in your business.

Nev Harris:

Thanks, Jen. Appreciate it.

Jennifer Bourn:

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