Bob Gauvreau: Being Your Own CFO with Gauvreau & Associates

Are you in need of accounting services?

Bob Gauvreau is the founder, CEO, and head CPA of Gauvreau and Associates.

Bob has worked in accounting for over 10 years and started Gauvreau & Associates in 2008.

Since 2008, Gauvreau and Associates has helped small and large companies with every possible accounting need.

The team at Gauvreau & Associates have experience in financial services, housing and rental companies, property development, property management, and much more.

They offer bookkeeping, financial reporting, asset protection, and a plethora of other important services that every company needs to succeed.

Learn more about how Gauvreau & Associates can help your company grow by listening to this episode of The Thoughtful Entrepreneur above and don’t forget to subscribe on  Apple Podcasts – Stitcher – Spotify –Google Play –Castbox – TuneIn – RSS.

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Welcome to The Thoughtful Entrepreneur Show. I'm Josh Elledge, founder and CEO of We turn entrepreneurs into media celebrities, grow their authority, and help them build partnerships with top influencers. We believe that every person has a unique message that can positively impact the world. stick around to the end of the show where I'll reveal how you can be our next guest on one of the fastest growing daily inspiration podcasts on the planet in 15 to 20 minutes. Let's go and with us right now we've got Bob Gauvreau. Bob, you are the founder of Gauvreau and Associates. You've been in business for a long time 11 to 12 years. In, you know, in in internet, as you know, it's kind of like, you know, in internet terms, you're you're a legend. Your way to

the difficult times that Absolutely,

yeah. Also, you are the author of the forthcoming book. And the title is subject to change, perhaps. But the working title, as it were, his vision to results guiding entrepreneurs to financial freedom, which should kind of spoiler alert in terms of what we're going to talk about in this conversation. Thank you so much for joining us.

Thanks for having me, Josh.

So Bob, we've actually had a couple of conversations now. You're a very, very cool guy. And I love the work that you do. And can you just lay a foundation of what Gauvreau and Associates does, who you work with and the outcome you provide?

Yeah, absolutely. So we are we have a couple things going on. So we have a traditional CPA firm, who essentially serves entrepreneurs across North America and will actually across the world. So we have that traditional side and then we have a coaching business which all also offers virtual CFO services. So the coaching businesses, helps entrepreneurs understand the steps they need to take to create financial freedom in their lives, you know, increase the performance of their business read into generating massive wealth for them and their families. And then we have the CFO services, which essentially comes into businesses on a monthly or quarterly basis helps provide some analysis and understanding of how the business is actually performing and what individuals need to do to take their business to the next level.

Okay, so you bring up a really, really big subject and that is that I think a lot of early stage startups are doing the best they can on the number side of things and I think a lot of us I say us being you know, I've gone through this you know, I've I've had bookkeepers certainly have had, you know, someone file my taxes and you know, try to get me the lowest tax possible once a year. But, you know, in terms of making a financial in terms of making business decisions based on numbers, I don't know. It's like, I feel like we're doing the best we can. But I really feel admittedly just incompetent. You know, I'm being hard on myself. But what, what, what are some of the basic things? And I know that this is a big tenant of the book that's coming up. What are some of the basic things that every founder or CEO should be doing in their business to be their own best CFO until they get to the point where they can start, you know, attracting talent to fill these roles?

Yeah, absolutely. So this is essentially the entire premise of our book, which is very exciting. So the first step that everyone needs to take is to truly Understand what their goals and what their vision is for their business. Because if you don't understand what your goal is, whether it's, you know, make $100,000 or make a million dollars, you know, to understand what that income looks like, so that we can create a pathway and critical drivers that will help us reach that. So that's step one. Step two would be understanding the financial model. So what is the cost structure related to your business? You know, are there variables and fixed costs, that we need to understand how that relationship works in your business so that we know how to drive the financial profitability of the company? Then we get into, you know, accountability, what are the critical drivers that are involved in the business, you know, what, what is driving revenue, the number of leads that we need, the number the percentage of conversion so that we can realize our revenue generation goals that we need to based on our cost structure. And then you know, once we understand those critical drivers, making sure that we have up to date financial reports We can understand exactly where we are along our pathway to realizing extraordinary financial results,

and what the reports look like. For again, I'm thinking of the earlier stage startup, you know, they're, they're just kind of getting going, you know, maybe revenue is just starting to come in now. And what what sorts of things would be really great for a business to have from the get go?

Right off the bat, you know, if you're starting a business, get yourself onto a cloud based accounting solution or bookkeeping solution. So our favorite, of course, is QuickBooks Online. They're the biggest player in the market. They're investing the most into making sure that the program continues to advance and use AI intelligence. However, there's programs like wave that are free. So for a start up a wave accounting program would be free, you connect it to your bank feed. So what happens is all the transactions that are happening inside your account are showing up on a profit level. statement so that you can actually see what the results are that are happening. Now the one thing that I caution startups on is that, you know, the profitability is nice, but sometimes you're making money but you have no cash left. And so there's a big difference between you know, profit and cash flow and understanding that and you know, what is going into your cash flow? What are you investing in? are you creating inventory? are you investing in capital assets? Are you putting out marketing dollars up front? You know, cash flow is different than profitability and understanding the difference is so important, but the very first step is getting that dashboard created.

You know, one thing that's absolutely crazy on the thing that you just mentioned is that and we've experienced this, I've spoken for the Tony Robbins organization and you know, through to his business mastery, audience and business mastery. Tony, and then he has a speaker that will talk about this and as he goes through the stages of business, you go into this adolescent phase of business where you start really increasing revenues. And all of a sudden, you have cash flow issues, and it doesn't make any sense. You know why? If you know everything is going up, up up, am I like, wait a minute, like, my balance isn't where I'd really like it to be. And I'm getting like the money is incoming, but I'm not going to see that for about eight days. And meanwhile, I've got all these bills now, Mike, what is going on with our cash flow? So, I mean, what's the what Why does that happen? Robert, or Bob? That's,

that's essentially, you have to be ready to grow. Right? And there's sometimes in a business where if you're starting to make massive investments, right, if you're, if you're taking on capital commitments, and you're accumulating debt while you're doing it, but you're creating an infrastructure for massive growth, what happens is you're growing and the revenue is coming in, but your cash is going out so quickly. on debt repayment, that, you know, you're not catching up. So you need to make sure that the profitability that's ready in your company is sitting there. And it's available for you to make sure that your your cash flow doesn't become a major concern, because you know, you're not ready to grow. If the infrastructure isn't in place and the framework isn't in place. Businesses can go out of business real quickly, because their cash flow just can't keep up with their business growth.

Is that crazy? I mean, it just, it seems so contrary to what I think a lot of people expect. And they go through this phase. And I mean, this is common,

right? Absolutely. Well, you look at you know, I think of some pretty massive companies that have been in history that have been growing at 100 200,000% every year. Yeah. And then in year five, all of a sudden, they go through bankruptcy position because they want they just couldn't deliver on their revenue growth. And their cash requirements were much higher than what their their profitability was. So um, yeah.

Yeah so how does somebody balance all of that so that we can you know, keep decent cash flow is it is it just listen? Is it a, you know, access to capital and say listen, you know, in order for us to continue like we have really great potential here we really should you know open up a line of credit or get an SBA loan or something of that nature

for sure, well that and so, so working capital management is so very important so, whether it's, you know, financing receivables, right, like one big one big thing that businesses get into, they're not collecting money right up front, that they get into their financing their customers purchases of their of their business products or services and they're not getting paid for it. So they run out of money. So working capital management, you know, having a line of credit to help finance that piece is super important. But I would say you know, the number one factor Making sure that this does not become a problem is to stay on top of your finances and make sure that you're reviewing them on a regular and frequent basis, and that you have a knowledge of how to interpret them. Right? Because if you're staying on top of them, and you're monitoring them, you know, chances are we can detect any early signs of have any financial concerns or cash flow concerns. So we change it so that we change the outcome. So we make sure that we get a positive outcome.

Yeah. So I mean, you're either going to reduce expenses, or, you know, double down and find some money elsewhere, to make sure that you're not in a position where your accounts are getting dangerously low, where like, wait a minute, you know, payrolls, a little bit more than expected. And, you know, now it's, you know, going to, you know, I, the founder can't pay themselves, you know,

like that. Well, it's pretty cool because, you know, the resourcefulness of entrepreneurs is pretty amazing, right? I would imagine that anybody who's tuning into this would go Okay, well, it's not as easy says as done. But any entrepreneur who's put into a corner and says, You know what, we need to find $20,000 of cash to make sure that this thing keeps going. You know, there's a list of tools that we can implement, including selling a program selling an upfront program or collecting cash upfront before we deliver a product, or, you know, getting a line of credit or some form of financing, even though sometimes that's a little bit difficult, especially with startups, they don't tend to want to provide financing for startups. Yeah, you know, a startup can go in and collect money up front, or can be really tight on their on their cash flow management on the receivable side, which can, you know, really shift the cash flow of a business in a positive way quickly.

Bob, at what point does it make sense for a business to consider bring out what let's talk about The different kind of, I guess, financial talent that you can bring in, and at what point should you bring these people in? versus, hey, you should just do that part of yourself.

Yeah, well, and I think I think some of it depends on the individual knowledge of the entrepreneur as well. Because finances like you and I have chatted about finances aren't always everyone's strong part in. In actual fact, it's tends to be a major weakness in most entrepreneurship. So you need to have some sort of financial knowledge whether whether it's yourself or somebody on your team that can help interpret, you know, what the actual results of this business are, so that we know that we're doing okay. So there are there are a few options. One, obviously is the entrepreneur is driving the business, you know, it's sell, sell, sell, collect, collect, collect, and you just keep going at that pace, you're somewhat managing your business by your cash balance your bank balance. The second one would be You know, the extreme is the bring someone who's experienced in financial management, almost like a full time CFO or controller into the business, which may cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. Right? If you're looking for somebody who has the experience in a particular industry or working in an entrepreneurial organization, it could cost you a quarter million dollars to bring somebody in, like that. third option, which is the option that we somewhat provide, is the contract CFO work where, you know, you bring in a financial expert on a regular and frequent basis to help you understand exactly where you're at. And you know what it is that you need to change right now, not not a year from now. We're not looking back on the last couple years, we're looking forward to say what do we need to change now to really create extraordinary financial results in your business?

Now? You know, I think and i i think i I empathize. With a lot of other startup CEOs and founders is on that side, sometimes it would just feel really good to have not just financial services like bookkeeping, but but actual financial leadership. And is that the kind of thing, Bob that you guys do?

Yeah. And so we've got a bunch of different customizable programs that we work on. And really what I love to do at first is to say, Where are we going, you know, how do we predict the volume of revenue that we need? You know, how many sales Do we have to meet? How many leads Do we need to generate in the next month so that we create financial results we're looking for? Because if we can't, if we can't see where we're going in the future, how do we know how we're going to get there? And one analogy that we tend to look at is like the being part of a basketball game walking in halfway through basketball game, you know, there's shots being taken from everywhere. are the three points or two points, you know, the fans are cheering on both sides. But unless you see a scoreboard unless you see what the actual score is in the game and how much time is left, you don't know who's winning the game. Either way, you're very confused and you're, you're out of sorts. So, think of going back into the basketball game you walk in, and you see that it's, you know, 91 to 86. And the home team's winning, there's three minutes left, you know exactly what they need to do in the next three minutes to make sure they win the game. And that's the same with having the financial knowledge in your business. If you know exactly where you are and where you're heading. You know exactly how much time you have left, you know what results you need to accomplish in order to realize the financial results you're really looking for

now, and so Bob, can you speak specifically to how do people engage with Gauvreau and Associates? What are the different entry ways and services and and what is what is it and if you don't mind me asking like what is typical in Investment look like for those services?

Yeah. So as part of the part of the launch of our new book that's coming out in January, we're creating this new coaching platform. So we've got a 12 week learning platform that we're looking at being a $5,000 investment. And in that we are going to teach entrepreneurs the 12 steps they need to take and implement in their business to create these extraordinary financial results. So they'll be working papers, and spreadsheets, which I know is exciting for a lot of people. But, but just essentially some inputs so that you can realize where you're going and where you're heading. And what it is what steps you need to take along the way to implement it. So that's, you know, that's providing the overall framework. And here's the tools you need to implement into your own business. And then we have a will just do it for you. Package where we're looking at that being you know, a $2,000 a month commitment. What We do is we have a vision session, we help entrepreneurs understand exactly what their long term goals are their short term goals are, we put that into a financial model, we understand the critical drivers. And we we essentially come up with three to seven characteristics and critical drivers for every employee. That's part of the team to make sure that each one of those delivers on a weekly basis so that you realize the success you're really looking for the same time we come in on a monthly basis, provide monthly CFO analysis and help with cash flow, profit maximization and tax planning along the way.

Yeah, I love it. Okay, so I'm going to give this all right, grab a pen, if you don't speak French. I'm going to give your URL Bob and it's Gauvreau And go ro is you by the way you should. You should register the geo VR. Oh, just phonetically spelled one. Yeah, yeah. So it's, it's spelled and by the time this podcast is aired, Bob has already purchased that that domain. But G A U V R E A U C P A .ca. And that'll take you to go grow and Associates where all everything that Bob that you just went over, it's all listed right here certainly can get connected with, you know, everything that you're working on. You've got great content, you've got a ton of resources on here. And so Bob, thank you so much, man. This is a really important conversation that we've had and listen, I'm going to have you back on as we get closer to book launch as well. So you can talk a bit more a little bit more specifically about your program, which I think is a godsend for a lot of businesses that really need this this you know, crash course in being your own CFO until you get to the point where you want to, you know, bring that talent in.

Absolutely. Yeah. No, that's great. Thank you so much for having me and, and hopefully, you know, we can help a few entrepreneurs make a little bit of money and have more impact in their business. Sounds great. So, Bob Gauvreau, you are the founder and CEO of Gauvreau and Associates. Thanks so much for joining us. Thank you, Josh.

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