A decade ago, Andi Smiles had a secret.
She was working as a bookkeeper, helping entrepreneurs and small businesses track and manage their finances.
But her own business accounts, she says, were “a hot financial mess.”
“I was undercharging, and just ignoring and leaving my taxes for the last minute,” says the Parsons Entrepreneur Academy instructor. “I used to get sick to my stomach filing my annual taxes. I was like, ‘Oh, my God, how much am going to owe?’"
So how did she get from there to becoming the financial educator, coach and all-round money badass she is today?
Andi will tell you that it had far less to do with numbers than with tackling her preconceptions, attitudes and mindset—an approach she brings to her no-judgements work with entrepreneurs today.
“Money is a relationship like any other,” she says. “If you have a friend and never call them, never text, never go out, how deep is that friendship going...
Everyone can be good at money.
Don’t believe me? Consider this: money is 50% technical and 50% emotional.
Most people focus on the technical side of money: the how-tos of taxes, bookkeeping, budgeting, and financial analytics. New entrepreneurs usually dive into learning these concepts, only to find that they hit a wall somewhere along the way.
The cycle looks like this: Eagerness to learn *all the things*. Overwhelm creeps in because *all the things* turns out to be a lot of things. Then there’s avoidance- doing the money stuff doesn’t feel good when it’s overwhelming, unclear, or confusing.
Next the panic, especially at tax time, when business owners realize there’s a looming deadline they must meet to stay compliant. And finally, defeat, a sense of failure, and the belief that you’ll “never get money.”
If this sounds familiar, you’re not alone. Even I, a financial consultant, have experienced this...
When it comes to business, the #1 challenge most creatives face is the mental game of charging what you’re actually worth.
There are, of course, two ways to think about pricing your work. One is a more left-brain, logical, numbers-and-reality-based assessment of what you should charge for your creative services.
But as creatives, we don’t always think in all numbers.
So let’s take some time to really unpack the emotions and feelings we have associated with money and worth. And if you want to go even deeper, we break down these restricting emotions further in this workbook which you can download for free.
It’s understandable that charging what your worth is--excuse the pun--emotionally taxing…
Just charging for your creative output feels inherently weird… like asking people to pay you for being yourself.
Not to mention the imposter syndrome...
Taxes - the little word that instills fear in just about every self employed person. So much so that many people put off even thinking about taxes until the very last minute just to be hit with mountains of work digging through paperwork, invoices, and documents to file in time.
Especially for self-employed folx, taxes stir up negative emotions.
But it doesn't have to be that way!
You can approach tax season from a place of empowerment and confidence! All it takes is a foundational knowledge of taxes - what they are, how you're charged, and most importantly, how you can lower your tax rate!
Knowledge = confidence. Seriously, sitting down to do taxes knowing you have all your ducks in a row, or scoring a bigger tax break for your creative business is the BEST feeling in the world.
That's why we've brought small business financial consultant and instructor here at Parsons Entrepreneur Academy, Andi Smiles to teach you how to become a tax ninja with...
Underpricing is one of the most common reasons self-employed people struggle to meet their financial obligations and pay themselves. But, figuring out how to price your services is one of the hardest parts of building a business.
Price your services too high, and you risk isolating your customers. Price them too low, and you’ll have a hard time covering your costs and expenses.
So how do you set your prices so that your business is financially sound? And what do you do when imposter syndrome and negative thoughts make you second guess your pricing model?
We broke it down for you in a handy template which you can download for free right here.
Read on to learn how to calculate your prices sustainably for your business and you, the owner.
The biggest pricing mistake people make is setting their prices reactively. There are two types of reactive pricing: external and internal.
External reactive pricing is when you...
You’re starting a new creative business and you’ve got all the feels. You’re excited about the possibility that your art, music, designs, or creative work might impact more people. You’re eager to jump in and start making money from your art. And you’re worried about how much it’s going to cost and if you have enough money to cover your startup expenses.
If this sounds like you, you need a startup budget. A startup budget helps you plan your startup expenses, prioritize what’s most important, and keeps your spending on track. So you can spend less time worrying about money and more time being creative.
Not all budgets are created equally, which is why it’s essential to understand the difference between an operational budget and a startup budget.
An operational budget is a plan for how you’ll allocate the money you earn from your creative work. It’s based...