In this week’s episode of the Seven Figure Consultant Podcast, I had the pleasure of interviewing Octavia Conner, the CEO of Say Yes to Profits, a virtual CFO firm.
Octavia shared her journey with me, from leaving corporate America to becoming an entrepreneur. She opened up about the challenges she faced along the way and the breakthrough moment that led her to build a successful six figure business, which quickly scaled to a seven figure business.
We delved into the topic of cash flow and why it’s so important for businesses, the significance of setting profit goals, and how focusing on profit margins and making strategic decisions can make a world of difference in the success of your business.
We also touched on the often overlooked aspect of tax planning and how it can greatly impact your bottom line, as well as evaluating expenses and discovering money leaks.
Octavia’s insights and experiences were truly inspiring, and I hope they resonate with you as much as they did with me!
In this episode:
- [00:00:34] Octavia shares her journey from corporate America to entrepreneurship, including the challenges and breakthroughs she experienced along the way.
- [00:05:08] The significance of cash flow in a business and how it can determine its success or failure.
- [00:06:20] The common mistake entrepreneurs make.
- [00:08:59] Focusing on the profit margin of a business rather than just the top line figures.
- [00:09:54] Strategies to stop excessive spending and retain money in the business.
- [00:13:38] The importance of building a cash reserve.
- [00:16:45] The financial impact of business growth and the importance of preparing for tax obligations.
- [00:21:21] Identifying and eliminating money leaks in the business to increase profitability.
- [00:25:31] Managing cash flow and how it can be improved.
- [00:26:19] The positive outcomes of having a well-managed cash flow, such as consistently receiving a CEO salary and being able to build a team.
- Many businesses get caught up in the cycle of money coming in and out without focus on profit or cash flow. But without enough cash, a company can’t survive. So, let’s shift our focus from just revenue to setting clear profit and cash flow goals.
- See every expense as an investment that should bring a return. Ask yourself the ROI question before making any investment and consider the potential returns in terms of money, time, and expertise.
- Conduct quarterly audits to identify areas where costs can be reduced, leading to better cash flow and profitability.
“It’s a blessing to pay taxes and to be in a position where you’re required to pay taxes, but at the same time, it’s so sad when all of your progress is just eaten up and then it’s like, oh okay so now we’re going into the new year and it feels like a surprise. … But it doesn’t need to be that negative surprise if you prepare for it in advance.” – Octavia Conner
“I feel the biggest mistake is that entrepreneurs will focus on their top line. There are four money lines in business – the revenue, cash flow, profit, and believe it or not, taxes. What a lot of entrepreneurs do is they only focus on bringing in more money. I need to earn six figures. I need to earn seven figures, right? I have a revenue goal. But what a lot of entrepreneurs don’t have is a profit goal or a cash flow goal.” – Octavia Conner
“It’s really easy to be like, it’s me. I’m rubbish at everything. I shouldn’t have done this. And the shame that piles up on all of that… But it doesn’t mean to say that we don’t have a gift to share with the world. It just means that we have not understood certain key things about cash flow and how the whole business needs to work. And also when you’ve come out of corporate, it’s okay to not understand what it takes for an entrepreneurial business to function well, because how would you know? Being in corporate is nothing like having your own business.” – Jessica Fearnley
After spending over ten years in corporate America, helping to build multimillion-dollar businesses as the “go-to numbers girl,” Octavia decided to ditch the 9 to 5 in 2011 and build her dream business instead. With a laptop, a busted printer, nominal savings, but full of passion, Octavia embarked on a journey of providing small businesses with advanced financial management support, strategies, and solutions. Her passion led to the birth of Say Yes To Profits.
After leaving her corporate 6-figure career, Octavia ended up completely broke, almost foreclosing on her dream home. She returned to corporate America while rebuilding her business from scratch. Within 14-months she remerged as a full-time six-figure business owner, scaling to seven figures shortly after. As of today, Octavia teaches business owners how to cross the seven-figure mark within three years or less. She is a walking success story!
Octavia has been quoted in Forbes and featured in Afro Tech and Inuit. Selected as a top 50 accountant in North America for two consecutive years and an award-winning best-selling author and professional speaker Octavia combines over 20 years of business, accounting, and financial experience.