Beyond The Numbers: A Message from Our Boise, Idaho Partner

The Human Story Behind Financial Statements or  The Unseen Lives Behind Financial Statements

The financial statements of a company represent a story of a company’s performance presented in a standard financial reporting format. To some, these reports are just numbers, results from which shareholders or stakeholders make decisions or use for compliance reporting (taxes, audits, etc.).

Beyond the Numbers: A Glimpse into Real Lives

When I read financial statements or when I am asked to assist a company regarding its accounting and financial reporting, I am always looking beyond the numbers I see on a report, because behind the numbers are people from varying backgrounds who have worked hard to build their businesses, and have sacrificed their time, money, and relationships.

I may find a husband, a wife, a father, or a mother operating a business while trying to find the time to do their part within the family to maintain a work-life balance. Or it may be the young man or woman becoming established in life, working diligently to build a business to support their future.

Perhaps it is the owner who has put in countless years to establish and build a business and is now looking toward transitioning it to the next generation or selling and is considering how his future looks, and if he will reap the fruit from his longtime efforts.

Life Poured into Businesses

Many entrepreneur-owners in addition to using their life savings often put in immeasurable time to build their businesses. It is not uncommon to see a seven-day work week, missed birthdays, and other events as one day begins to blur into another.

I recall one owner who was seeking help with her accounting and internal reporting. She was one of the people described above; working all the time, had invested all the family funds, and other outside funds. She was tired and was at her wit’s end. I recall when we were discussing how we could assist her with her accounting and help her reclaim some home time in the evenings and on the weekends or take those much-needed vacations, that she began crying at the thought she could have some considerable time back in her life. Through our assistance she is now able to spend more time with her family, be home on weekends, and have her financial house in order, too.

Peering Beyond the Balance Sheets

Financial statements are more than being about the ownership or management of a company. The numbers reflect the dedicated work of the company’s employees who rely on the success of the company to provide their personal income and benefits to sustain their families.

Embracing The Purpose

Why do I enjoy my work? Because every day I have the opportunity to serve others and to be a part of their success. Hopefully, the next time you read or review a financial statement, you too will look beyond the numbers to see the people behind them.

Author: Kevin Clouser, Partner at NOW CFO

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