financial forecasting variance

Why Do We Need Financial Forecasts?

by Tim Berry

Business owners and managers do financial forecasting to enhance  management. Anticipate essential flows of money to manage them better. Forecasting is a necessary first step towards managing plan vs. actual results, which means course corrections. It’s like steering a business. A Quick Example Consider this simple illustration: You can’t identify changes in flow if you don’t... Read More »

Take Real Steps to Fight Sexism in Tech

by Tim Berry

Harassment in the workplace. Sexism. Genderism. Bigotry and prejudice. Brogramming. Not just everywhere, but also in high tech, which – you’d think – should have been advanced past that backwardness. Silicon Valley too. Blue city, blue industry, in a blue state. If you’ve been off the grid for a while, read this from the New... Read More »

What Do Business Plan Financials Look Like

by Tim Berry

People often ask: What do business plan financials look like? You can get away with a sales forecast, spending budget, and cash flow plan. That’s enough for actually running your startup. It’s the essential numbers in a lean business plan. If you want to do it right you take it further and present projected (also called... Read More »

Are There Statistics on Inaccurate Forecasts?

by Tim Berry

How often do forecasts fail? How many business forecasts are accurate? Are there statistics on inaccurate forecasts? It’s a good question. It relates nicely to my view that all business plans are wrong, with the addendum, but vital. While I almost never host guest posts on this blog – opinions here are mine – but... Read More »

A Two-Day Startup Fest at Rice Business Plan Competition

by Tim Berry

A portable device to quickly diagnose strokes. An additive that doubles the strength of fiberglass and carbon fibre materials. A new way to use magnesium to heal broken bones. Those are just a few of the dozens of startups I saw earlier this month at the annual Rice Business Plan Competition. This was the tenth... Read More »

How to Protect Your Business Idea While You Build The Business

by Tim Berry

You can't build a business without sharing your idea. Here's how to protect your business idea and still share it, carefully, as needed. Read More »

The Billion-Dollar Idea Fallacy

by Tim Berry

What is wrong, you ask, with thinking your business idea is worth a billion dollars? That you have the next unicorn? Nothing. We all dream. Unless you let that interfere with reality. Read More »

The Crystal Ball and Chain

by Tim Berry

This is an answer to a question I get way too often. I call it the "Crystal Ball and Chain" problem. I've run into it several times as I've introduced the planning process into a new company or organization. People... Read More »

Do We All Undervalue Bootstrapping?

by Tim Berry

In business schools, in popular blogs, in business publications, and in general discussion of starting a business, we undervalue bootstrapping. We teach starting a business as if every new business requires sophisticated venture capital. I understand how this can be... Read More »

A Good Resolution: Schedule Regular Management Meetings

by Tim Berry

Each year, as you get ready to publish the next year's plan, schedule the plan review meetings. Use some regular meeting schedule such as the third or fourth Thursday of every month. All the managers committed to the plan will... Read More »