Wouldn't it be great that every time someone sends you an invoice for their services/products you pay for it immediately?

The cash is always sitting in your bank account and no matter what bills you receive you can always pay on time.

The theory is if you're good at 'budgetting', you should be able to handle your 'cashflow'.

So that leads me to this week's story.

I had an outstanding payment for a supplier which was overdue. The only reason I hadn't paid it was the fact that I had a couple of queries about the work that had been done.

Knowing that the business owner was disorganized in the way he ran his business, I wanted to check that everything on that invoice was correct. It wouldn't have surprised me if he had overcharged for work already paid for.

Little things gave me the impression John was disorganized. He didn't respond to emails and wouldn't return phone calls.

Invoices were sent out weeks after the work had been completed. It's funny though, because John always complained to me that 'cash flow' was a problem.

Fortunately for John he had an assistant who ensured the work was always done and sent out on time. If it wasn't for the assistant, I'd find another supplier.

Here's the bottom-line...

John didn't respond to my emails when I queried the payment, so I rang him and left a message with his assistant. The assistant said she'd get John to call me that afternoon.

Three days later, I called again, finally got hold of John and I asked him why he hadn't responded to my email and phone calls. His response... "I've been too busy!"

I don't usually follow up like this but I had another job ready for John's company to do and didn't want any hold-ups due to outstanding payments.

I teach my coaching clients how to set up simple systems so they get paid on time. This reduces their cashflow issues and frees them up to work on improving their business for more profit and time off.

If chasing payment is something you do often then consider these options:

1. Ask for payment up-front or 50% deposit on commencement of project and 50% prior to completion.
2. Offer regular instalments on credit card or direct debit (which you deduct at your end)
3. Delegate or outsource the task of chasing up outstanding payments. Sometimes all it takes is a phone call to the debtor.

There's been a few times when people have done work for me and not sent an invoice. I bet it's probably happened to you too.
As the owner of the business you must get yourself organized, otherwise you may find that your cash isn't flowing and you waste time, energy and resources on trying to bring it in.

Lorraine Pirihi
Australia's No. 1 Productivity Coach

"Committed to helping small business owners and
entrepreneurs work less, earn more and have a life!"

Author's Bio: 

Lorraine Pirihi is Australia's No. 1 Productivity Coach. She's a dynamic, motivational and powerful presenter, an author and leading business coach. Lorraine specialises in helping small business owners and entrepreneurs have more time, make more money and have a life!
For more information on how to increase your productivity and your profits in your small business, subscribe to Lorraine's widely read ezine ‘The Organised Times’. Go to: http://www.office-organiser.com.au

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