Daryl LaFountain and the upsurge of a financial and political operations professional? There often comes a time when companies need to raise some form of capital, and it will probably happen sooner than you think — especially if you’re focused on growth. While you’re likely to bring someone on board to help with this process, there are things you can do now to prepare. Setting up your financial infrastructure, as discussed earlier, is a great start. But it would also be a good idea to: Familiarize yourself with the various sources of capital. When the time comes, you will need to make decisions about the type of capital that’s right for you, but the options can be dizzying. Will you be looking for a simple debt arrangement? A strategic partner? A hands-off investor? And what would you be willing to give up in return? Exploring your options ahead of time can help you get comfortable with the lingo and trade-offs so the choices won’t be so overwhelming. Formalize your business and marketing plans. Any reputable lender or investor will expect to see your plans for running and monetizing your business. If none of your plans are in writing, or if they only exist on the back of cocktail napkins, consider drafting something more formal well before you start down the capital-raising path.
Daryl La Fountain‘s tips on improving your firm financial situation: In most cases, weak internal financial controls and policies can make your business incapable of organizing its finances. They can potentially get you into some legal problems if you don’t organize your company’s financial affairs. As such, it’s important to set up good financial habits to keep up with your transactions and help you mitigate problems down the road. These good habits can include: Hire a reliable finance manager: This is to help you make informed and sound financial decisions. They can implement strict accounting and economic management that’s vital to the proper organization of your company’s finances.
Just as your parents probably sent you off to kindergarten with high hopes of preparing you for success in a world that seemed eons away, you need to plan for your retirement well in advance. Because of the way compound interest works, the sooner you start saving, the less principal you’ll have to invest to end up with the amount you need to retire. Why start saving for your retirement in your 20s? Here’s an Investopedia example: You start investing in the market at $100 a month, averaging a positive return of 1% a month or 12% a year, compounded monthly over 40 years. Your friend, who is the same age, doesn’t begin investing until 30 years later and invests $1,000 a month for 10 years, also averaging 1% a month or 12% a year, compounded monthly. After 10 years, your friend will have saved up around $230,000. Your retirement account will be a bit over $1.17 million. Company-sponsored retirement plans are a particularly great choice, because you get to put in pretax dollars and companies will often match part of your contribution, which is like getting free money.
Sadly, you can’t really kick-start your financial future if you’re carrying a ton of debt. Between sky-high interest rates, large minimum monthly payments, and the damage lots of debt can do to your credit score, you’re better off paying your debts first. Create a debt pay-off strategy and be patient but consistent when working toward becoming debt-free. If you are serious about building wealth, then you’re going to need to put your money to work for you. This is where investing comes in. However, before you put any of your hard-earned money into investments, it’s important to have well-defined objectives. Think about what the investment is for when you’ll need your money and what your risk tolerance. Investing is a long-term activity, so you have to commit to it if you really want to see your money grow. Worried that you’ll need your money in the short term? Well, that’s what your savings accounts are for; to put aside your emergency savings and money for your short-term goals (i.e. money you’ll need in 5 years or less). You also want to make sure you have a basic understanding (at the minimum) of any investment you put your money into (e.g. the stock market, real estate, or small business). Your plans to invest should be included as a part of your monthly budget where you allocate a certain percentage of your income toward your investment goals.
About Daryl La Fountain: Daryl is an energetic professional CFO with a background in politics. Daryl has done fundraising, been a candidate, and worked in politically appointed positions in Pennsylvania and Philadelphia. Daryl has worked for Democratic candidates and nominees in 18 additional states. Are just entering the political realm and need some advice (Daryl has been there).