Our monthly newsletter, Link Newsletter, is full of tips, reminders, and timely advice to help you stay well informed when it comes to your business and personal finances. If you have questions about any of the articles, feel free to email Damon Yudichak at Damon@yudichakcpa.com.
Portrait by Charles Gupton
In This Issue
I want to thank you for a Wonderful Year. It has been a great growth year for me. Our revenues this year are up 70% compared to last year, which is deeply gratifying.
To all of my customers, thank you for giving me the opportunity to work for you. I truly recognize the confidence you place in me to provide you with accurate and timely financial information. I know my role is an integral part of your decision-making. This is a role I take very seriously and I will continue to seek and implement ways to improve our services for you.
For those that have referred business to me, thank you for trusting me. A referral from you is the highest compliment you could give me.
I truly love my work and this business that I started from scratch three years ago. I started with no clients or business. I will never forget the early days when I struggled with confidence and feared I would make enough money to pay for my family to eat and live. You have enabled me to live my dream and I am so happy with my life and knowing that I could have a career that pays me to do work that I love.
I’m acutely aware of each of the instances where I have not lived up to my standards and have not delivered services as I wished I had. I’ve devoted a significant amount of time and resources to figuring out how to improve my business so that I can meet your needs. This year I’ve invested well over $40,000 back into my business to improve how we do the work. The end goal of this is to provide you with the best services and advice we can. I’ve completed 98 hours of Continuing Professional Education, which is more than double the 40 annual hours required by NC State Board of CPA Examiners.
All this leads to what I expect will be an exciting 2012. My goal for 2012 is to have measured growth. I will be focusing primarily on improving the services I offer my current customers and expanding services to better meet their needs.
This month as I’ve reflected on the closing of 2011, I’ve thought about what to expect for 2012. Here are my predictions of what will happen in 2012:
1.Small business revenues and profits will increase – The last three years have seen a lot of growth in new business start-ups. Many people left the corporate environment due to layoffs. The job market was weak so they chose to take the brave step into entrepreneurship. Business owners learned how to improve profitability because cash was a scarce resource and lending was hard to qualify for. Generally, it takes two to three years for a business to become profitable. A lot of small business owners are now becoming profitable and implementing cash flow operations from their revenues. I think this will lead to some job growth within small business. The only caveat to this is 2012 is an election year. I think this will cause some small business owners to be cautious about adding permanent employees.
2.Mobile computing will continue to provide tremendous growth opportunities. Apple will continue to be the market leader as they roll out the iPad 3 and iPhone 5 this year. I don’t expect the next generation of iPad and iPhone to be game changing devices but there will be enough changes to make upgrading worthwhile.
3.Windows 8 will be a big improvement over Windows 7. Windows 8 has the ability to be a game changing operating system as it incorporates touch screen technology into desktops. It will take at least 18 months for Windows 8 to gain wide acceptance with Microsoft users, as most companies will be hesitant to buy touch screen monitors that enable users to get all the benefits of Windows 8.
4.QuickBooks will make some significant upgrades to their QuickBooks Online software. Intuit, the makers of QuickBooks software, has the goal of within five years only offering online accounting software. QuickBooks Online still has a long way to go before it can phase out the Desktop version of QuickBooks.
5.There will not be many tax law changes for 2012. Legislators in Washington DC will continue to struggle to find common ground as both parties are diametrically opposed to each other. I expect to see more voter participation in the 2012 elections than the 2008 elections because I think the US population is tired of the stalemate in Washington DC. Voters will demand a better political environment for 2013 and the 2012 elections will be representative of that.
This month’s business owner profile is Rachel Kendall the founder of Rachel Kendall Team LLC. Rachel was chosen because she has been able to have strong growth as a real estate company over the past three years.
DY: Tell me about how you started your business and how it has grown over the last three years.
RK: When I started my business I made a conscientious decision that as long as someone wanted to buy or sell a home, regardless of the economy, they should use me. The fact that I only knew my brother and Dad was not in my favor but I made it a challenge to meet and share what I was doing with everyone! After a few months I realized that my husband’s experience and caring personality would be of great help and asked him to join me. Between the two of us we changed the traditional format to one of what we defined as full service and won Rookie of The Year for Keller Williams International! Since then we have tripled our business and are now top 10 in the triangle of all real estate teams!
DY: What has enabled your company to grow so strongly in a hard hit industry during a tough economy?
RK: The fact that we decided to create our real estate business in a tough economy was somewhat of a mystery to us. We never knew a different industry because we were not in real estate during that period of time. We simply saw this as a helping business that we wanted to participate in and do what we do, help people!
DY: You told me that marketing is very important to your company. What types of marketing work best for you?
RK: Making certain that the market is aware of our folk’s properties/listings is imperative. Anyone can list a property. Our goal is to never realize an expired listing and to close in record time. Once we have achieved appropriate condition and price it is our responsibility to fulfill the commitment. We have gorgeous professional virtual tours since a large part of our population discovers homes online. We offer higher incentives to buyer agents. We pay for stager to visit and consult to assure optimum presentation.
DY: Tell me about your philosophy of customer service?
RK: It’s one thing to profess to be a full service Team and another to truly be one! The term speaks for itself. As mentioned, we provide 100% service from beginning with a visit from our stager, quality and competitively priced service providers to help get the property in showing condition, professional virtual tour, talented buyer specialists searching for qualified buyers to wonderful and helpful listing specialist and closing experts. It’s all about caring. We think outside the box 24/7.
DY: You’ve built a strong referral network. What have you done to be successful at building a strong referral network?
RK: I think the key to building a strong referral network is to become a business that everyone is proud and excited to share with friends, coworkers and family. When I was teaching the highest compliment I could receive was another teacher requesting their child to be placed in my classroom! Same concept.
DY: What’s been your biggest business failure over the last three years? How did you use this failure to improve your business?
RK: My biggest failure over the past 3 years was not developing a Team sooner. We now have so much support. I am still working 24/7 but I do have time to occasionally take my Scotties for walks! As we tell our children, “never complain about something self-inflicted!”
DY: What has been your biggest accomplishment over last year?
RK: My biggest accomplishment over the past year has been doubling our business AND realizing NO expired listings. We don’t call on expired’s but get calls from expired’s! We have added two amazing buyer specialists and our caring, extremely experienced Team Administrator. I am also so excited about our “big hearted” additions to our Team. We are just getting better!
DY: What motivates you?
RK: Productivity and making people happy quickly, motivates me. I am simply teaching another subject. Instead of someone’s child, I am taking care of someone’s financial livelihood. Both are so important. It’s all about the intrinsic. May we never compromise our values!
To learn more about Rachel, visit her website www.rachelkendall.com.
My name is Damon Yudichak and I am a Certified Public Accountant. My father was an Army officer and we moved around a lot. We finally ended up in Fayetteville, NC. I’ve been a resident of Raleigh since 1999 when I moved here to go to North Carolina State University. I am fascinated with the moon and am still amazed that man has walked on the moon. I also am a big standup comedy fan.
The Orange Star Newsletter is prepared by Damon Yudichak. The Orange Star Newsletter carries no official authority, and its contents should not be acted upon without professional advice.
In accordance with IRS Circular 230, this newsletter is not to be considered a “covered opinion” or other written tax advice and should not be relied upon for IRS audit, tax dispute, or any other purpose.