Show me you're serious: Take an accounting course.

Suck it up, take and accounting course.

I am pitched ideas all the time about new ‘innovative’ things the world needs and people can make money on.  For me the two most distinguishing factors between dreamers and doers are the following 1) Have a bank account, 2) Take an accounting course.

We know that 90% of businesses fail. And a huge percentage of those (I am still pulling together articles and facts on this topic, hence forthcoming) fail not because of passion or inferior product, but because of lack of understanding of the fundamentals of business. I will write about the difference between passion, product, and process in another blog (or 10).

The point here is, if your definition of success is to have your company not fail, then only do things that increase your likelihood to succeed.

The most fundamental form of increasing your likelihood to succeed on the process side is to know how cash flows in and out of your company. The metaphor of cash being the lifeblood of a company could not be more real.

Accounting was once described to me, by the former head of M&A for Bank of America, as placing an absolute value of on the relationships of your company. Things you value will have money, things you don’t, won’t.

The reason I think it is so important to take an accounting course is, more than anything, you are signalling to yourself and anyone else that you are serious about the company succeeding, not just about having a romp around the block.

I am not saying that you need to do the bookkeeping every month, but as a leader you need to know how things work.

But hey, what do I know?