Why is the Internet viewed as the central place for true and valid facts?
That’s what I wonder when I read questions online from new designers asking for legal and financial advice.
I recognize that they are unknowledgeable about business. However, the following needs to be understood:
Do not take shortcuts if you plan to start and grow a successful gift basket business.
Trained professionals who know and practice the rules associated with business law and money are the only people who can answer questions dealing with either topic.
My shortcut error
In my early gift basket years I thought it was okay to prepare my business taxes through one of the software programs available in a box on retail shelves.
Then a problem occurred, one that software in a box could not fix. I contacted my attorney and asked her for recommendations to hire a certified professional accountant (CPA). She gave me two names.
I checked them out and realized that one was the best candidate.
After setting up an appointment at his office and interviewing him by asking numerous questions, I knew he was the right professional.
I properly thanked my attorney (you know what “properly” means when you make and sell gift baskets) and currently count on that same CPA she recommended for all tax-related assistance.
It’s impossible, in this post, to express how at ease I am every time I deliver my tax documents to the CPA. You cannot get his type of counsel on the Internet.
Worth the investment
No one on any discussion forum or in any social media group can provide you with financial guidance better than a CPA you hire to manage your business finances.
You will pay that person for their expertise, which is why some people want a shortcut. However, if you are making money, which is your goal in business, that investment is worth every penny.
A CPA will:
- Suggest the software program to install on your computer
- Answer questions on tracking and logging travel expenses
- Send you a checklist and forms for proper tax submission
- Help you with money questions for your personal life, too
Please, do not cut corners, attempting to find this type of guidance on the Internet and think that free-of-charge advice will work. It won’t.
If something goes wrong and you find your system under scrutiny by your state or country, your excuse cannot be, “Well, I asked online, and Karen told me about it.” That anonymous Internet person has nothing to do with the choice you made.
Help is near
One of the quickest solutions for this dilemma is found within the Start Your Own Gift Basket Business course I teach online. While I’m not an attorney or CPA, I help students in the course to find both people through proper Internet research.
I actually do the digging, show students how I uncover information, and then provide general questions to ask along with questions they’ve already written for the interview.
Questions you can ask other designers on the web are:
- How do you make products stand upright?
- What shippers do you find to be reliable?
- Where do you buy your gourmet products?
Questions that need professional guidance are:
- Do I have to register my business?
- Should I set up my business as a C corporation?
- What happens if someone gets sick from a product in my basket?
Make wise decisions before you buy one basket. Create a business budget that contains funds to hire an attorney and CPA, two separate people you interview to ensure that they are knowledgeable about the types of assistance you require.
If you take shortcuts by asking random people online about your financial and legal responsibilities, the hot water results will not be pleasant.