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Joe Casabona: Hey, everybody, and welcome to Episode 215 of How I Built It, the podcast that asks, how did you build that? The podcast that offers actionable tech tips for small business owners. I’m Joe Casabona. Today’s sponsors are TextExpanderRestrict Content Pro, and Mindsize. You’ll be hearing about them later. But first, I’m excited to talk to you about your small business financial checklist with our guest Kathy Svetina. She is the founder of NewCastle Finance. And we are going to be walking through her framework for you to manage your finances better. Kathy, how are you today?

Kathy Svetina: I’m great. Thank you so much for having me.

Joe Casabona: Thanks so much for coming on the show. I’m excited about this because as I was saying in the pre-show, I’m a little bit of an accounting nerd. I asked my accountants probably too many questions. I regular review my own books because I’m interested in kind of how things work and how to make the most of being a small business owner as far as the tax side goes. I’m based here in the United States. So I’m excited to talk to you about this.

But before we kind of get into the nitty-gritty, why don’t you tell us a little bit about who you are and exactly what you do. Because I feel like finances is kind of a lot like being a lawyer, right? There are a lot of different areas of finance that you can specialize in.

Kathy Svetina: Yes, you’re exactly right. You’re spot on. So what I specialize is financial planning and analysis. So many business owners get the reports and the data from their accountant, but they have them and didn’t really know how to use that. So sometimes they give them the pretty graphs and they sits on their table, and they look at it and say, “What do I really do with this now?” I have all this information, how do I plan for the future. So that’s where I come in. I help them figure out how to use the data that they have, that their accountants and bookkeepers give them, and how to plan for the future for the business so that they can actually have a successful and thriving business down the road.

Joe Casabona: That’s fantastic. When you talk about planning for the future, is this in the sense of how to grow the income of my business, or is it more like 401k and IRAs and things like that?

Kathy Svetina: No, it actually has nothing to do with 401ks and IRAs. Although if you do have employees, that is an important piece of it, but that falls more into the HR function, human resources function than the financial planning. But when it comes to the planning of your business, there’s a lot more than just sales to it and the financial pieces of expenses. There’s a whole world of what you should be thinking is like, how are you growing your business? Are you growing too fast?

You actually had a really good episode, I think it was in January with Jennifer Bourne, where she was talking about how businesses can make a million dollars and have 750,000 in expenses, and not making much money. Well, she has much smaller business and she makes a lot more money because she’s more prudent of how she uses the resources that she has.

Joe Casabona: The listeners can’t see this, but I blushed a little bit because it’s very rare that a guest on my show actually references a previous episode. So thank you so much for that. And I do think about that a lot, the analogy that you referenced. People will say like, “Oh, yeah, my business is in million dollars in revenue.” And like, if you spend a million and one dollars, then that’s not a successful business. So I think that’s really great. How are you growing your business? Are you growing too fast? These are questions that I don’t think people really think about. They just think “I need to make money as fast as possible.”

Now, what made you get into this? Were you always into finance? Is there some origin story where you were like, “Oh, man, I made a million dollars and spend a million and one or whatever?”

Kathy Svetina: That’s actually a great question. No, I did not make a million dollars, you know, have that. But I was always into finance. When I was 12 years old, I really wanted to go into investing. I actually figured out through college investing is not where I want to go down, down that route. But I was in corporate finance, and I found that really fascinating. How do you actually grow the business? The financial data, the financial information you have, how do you use it to actually drive the business forward? And I was in corporate finance and fortune 500 companies for 14 years.

What always bothered me was the fact that all these big companies have huge teams taking care of their finances. I mean, you have the treasury department, you have the tax department, you have all these departments working together for this company. But when you come to the small businesses, no one’s really doing that for them. Yeah, they have an accountant and bookkeeper, but no one’s doing that strategic level planning for them. And business owners, you know, you went into business. You didn’t go… although you like accounting, which is great, you’re not there to look at your numbers. And if you don’t have the experience in how to actually look it and how to interpret it, it gets really hard to figure out how to do that. And you have to do it all on your own, you have to wear all these hats. So that’s what I said, I really want to help small business owners figure this out.

Joe Casabona: I love that. And you’re absolutely right. I mean, while I am an accounting nerd a little bit, I just recently hired my accountant to do the quarterly books for me, because that’s not where I need to be spending my time. I’m definitely not doing it effectively because I don’t know if I’m categorizing things the right way. I just recently asked her, should I set up a payroll for myself because I’m just paying me? And while I do it kind of regularly, is that something I should do? It takes an expert, right?

When I tell people when they’re setting up a business, “You need to hire two people right off the bat: you need an accountant and you need a lawyer because you’re probably not ever going to be an expert in those things.” But financial planning is also insanely important. Kind of we were talking about this again in the pre-show, but I know people who will make money through PayPal, like people will pay via PayPal, and then those business owners will kind of use PayPal as their fun money. So it’s like not real money to them, which gives me agita because it’s still taxable income. I mean, maybe if you’re just looking at straight profit and loss, if the money you make in PayPal is the money you spend on expenses, that’s that kind of walks on line that makes me uncomfortable.

Kathy Svetina: And you’re right. I mean, it is uncomfortable, because any income, whether it’s through PayPal, whether you’re sending invoices to your customers, you’re getting credit card payments, anything that you’re getting through business is your taxable income. You have to report it. So if you’re having the funds/fund money out there that you’re not reporting, you can get into a lot of trouble with the IRS for that. So you really have to be careful of that and work with your accountant to make sure that they’re pulling all that data in.

Again, you are a business. You operate like one as well. When I talk to freelancers, sometimes they have a hard time understanding, yes, you’re just a one person, but you are still a business, a legitimate business.

Joe Casabona: Yeah, absolutely. It took me a while too. I was just reporting everything on my schedule C for a while. I didn’t have an LLC, because I was just a kid in college when I really started an actual business. But as soon as I got out of college and I was getting married and had actual assets, I’m like, “I should protect myself legally starting an LLC.” But then it also helps you financially by differentiating the money you make in your business, which is the business money, versus what you make as personal income. So I think that’s really important.

Before we get into your framework—maybe this is like step one of your framework—I’m curious to know, in order to prepare for the financial planning aspect of it, what kind of questions should we be asking our accountants? Or what kind of data should we get in order to prepare for this?

Kathy Svetina: If you’re hiring an accountant, the first thing you should be asking them is, how are they going to work with you? A lot of it comes with, do you actually like them as well—their personality? Because this is the person that’s going to be looking under the hood of your finances, and you want to make sure that you can have go to them with questions, that you feel comfortable asking them questions, and that they’re also going to be working with you too. Because an accountant is a huge part of your business. They become as your advisor, they look at your numbers. You want to make sure that you’re comfortable with them. So that’s number one.

Number two, what I would ask them is, how does the process look like? So, for example, how often can you expect the financial reports? Are they going to be updating them monthly? You should definitely make sure that you’re getting your financial reports monthly. You want to get the data that is relevant, that it’s updated. So if someone’s sending you the reports, you know, three, four months down the road, that is too late. You want to make the most updated information so that you can make decisions based on those numbers that you’re getting.

Joe Casabona: Got you. There’s two things I want to elaborate on here. The first is, what kind of information is in those financial reports? Is it just like profit and loss? Are they’re like projections? Is it all of that stuff?

Kathy Svetina: That’s an excellent question. You should be getting your profit and loss income statement or the P&L statement, that is at a minimum, your cash flow, which just tracks your inflow and outflow of cash. And then if you’re invoicing customers and you’re not getting paid immediately, you should also be getting your balance sheet so that you can look at an item called accounts receivable, which is going to tell you how much is still owed from those customers clients to you. Those are kind of like three musketeers of the financial statements as I like to call them. So those are the ones that you should be getting from your accountant.

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And now let’s get back to it.

Joe Casabona: Good accounting software should generate these things for you. But having an accountant actually look at them is important. For example, the balance sheet, accounts receivable, in FreshBooks they call that accrued. It’s like actual income, which is how much you got paid versus accrued income which is what you also invoiced. But kind of being able to look at that and having a person who understands look at that and interpreter for you is super important.

Having an accountant, you actually like… that you need to be… I think I really feel like that’s an understated thing. But when I was living in New York, we had a family friend and he was great because I basically just gave him my books and he just like took care of it and told me when we needed to do anything. When I moved to Pennsylvania, something that they charge in Pennsylvania that they don’t charge in New York is local taxes. So in New York, it’s state and federal, but in Pennsylvania, it’s state, federal, and local.

So I hired an accountant and I told this person, I’m doing this because I have messed up and had to pay penalties for not paying local taxes. This person quoted me on a price, and then handed me a tax bill way higher than I expected it to be, which is fine. It was like the summer I got married or whatever, the tax year I got married, and then we file jointly. But then the invoice she gave me was double what she quoted me on. And she was like, “I know.” I was like, “Why?” I’m like, “First of all, why didn’t you tell me ahead of time that we were about to go over?” And she said, “Well, you moved a couple of times. So local taxes were a pain in the neck.” And I’m like, “I hired you because of your expertise with local taxes.”

And then she didn’t even write off the student loan interest that I paid or whatever. So I ended up saving myself money. So annoyed. But my current accountant she is amazing and understands my business and answers my ridiculous questions, because I’m like, “What about this?” Anyway, that was just a tangent, a side quest, if you will.

Kathy Svetina: And you do bring up a good point with that too, before we go further, is make sure that you have an accountant that knows what they’re doing. I know this is really hard when you’re a business owner and you don’t know what exactly is the right thing. But you get the feel. Ask the right questions. Ask the questions. They should be able to tell you this. And make sure that when they’re invoicing it, ask for a flat fee, and negotiate with them that, you know, if you’re paying them $900, you’re not going to pay any more than that. So if they’re trying to charge you by the hour, that’s just no. That’s a no.

Joe Casabona: I could not agree more. Rian Kinney was on this podcast, she gave similar advice for hiring a lawyer for the intellectual property side of things. She’s like, “Get a flat fee, otherwise, they’re just going to kill you on communications and things like that.” But it’s true. This person said to me, “You think I just sit here and check a bunch of boxes and then charge you for it.” And it turns out, that’s exactly what they did. They missed a box that they checked because they didn’t check the student loan box.

Again, my current accountant, I know she understands my business, she understand the technical selling online courses and subscriptions. And that was really important to me, because I didn’t know, for example, that I had to charge tax to people in Pennsylvania who bought my courses even though it’s a digital product, right? She helped me with that.

Kathy Svetina: That’s awesome.

Joe Casabona: Or that I would get sales taxes. I don’t need to charge it, but I would still have to pay the sales tax. So, yeah, things like that. She’s been super helpful with. And the PPP loan, which is supposed to be straightforward, but what’s impossible. I think that’s really important. So great. We have our accountant, we have our financial reports. How do we start planning? How do we start with financial planning? You said that you have a framework. How did you build that framework, and how can we walk through it?

Kathy Svetina: The framework is based on that in a lot of businesses where they get really stuck on, that they have this accounting and a bookkeeper and think, “that’s all I need to do. That’s great. I have the numbers, I’m done with finances.” The problem with it is that bookkeeping accounting is just the foundation work when it comes to your finances. So there’s all these other pieces that go into your what I like to call the financial house. So I have a framework that I called the financial house framework. So if you think about the house, it has a lot of pieces so that it can actually stand. So the foundation is the big part of it. And that is your accounting and your bookkeeping. You cannot build on anything on top of it if you don’t have that.

And we already went through that. It’s making sure that you’re getting accurate financial reports, making sure that you’re getting them on a monthly basis at least, and not every couple of months. So that’s your foundational work. And then on top of that, you want to use that information to get the trends from your data. That’s where the real work starts with your numbers. So that’s called the financial analysis piece. Like I said, if you think of your financial house, those are your walls. Those are the things that actually build your decisions. And when you getting that information from the financial analysis, you’re able to figure out what do you do based on actual data not just on guesswork.

Joe Casabona: So we look at the trends, the trends are things like “I made X amount in the last three months, this is what I can expect to make in the next six.” Things like that. Or is it a little different from that?

Kathy Svetina: It could be that once you look at the trends that you figure out that you actually have a seasonal business, and you didn’t know that. So it could be that, you know, if you’re doing a lot of web design for a particular, let’s say, a wedding designer, and when they’re going into their season, then need their website updated, they need whatever they need to do, and they’re calling you two months before that to prep for it. So you get a lot of your revenue, your sales two months before that. It’s an interesting piece when you actually see these numbers and you look at who your customers are. Are they trends? What are they seeing? How are they paying you? You’re actually able to get that information and react to it.

Because you might be getting a lot of work is like, “Do I need to hire another freelancer to help me with it, if you want to, you know, get more revenue and growth into it? So those are the type of things that you can actually get from when you look at your financial information.

Joe Casabona: That’s really important, too. On this show we’ve talked about how freelancers can avoid the famine. Because all small business owners, all freelancers understand that there’s a feast, and there’s a famine. It seems like during the feast, you’ll have this endless amount of work and you’ll never have to generate leads again. And then the famine comes and you’re like, “I don’t know if I’ll be able to survive the next three months.”

In an episode with Jason Resnick, we talked about filling the pipeline and niching down so that you have leads coming in. But this is another way to avoid the famine. If you know your feast is from May to September every year, then you can better prepare for the month where you’re like, “Okay, I get no business from October to February.”

Kathy Svetina: Exactly. Exactly. And the point is you have to first identify it so that you can react to it.

Joe Casabona: Yeah, absolutely. That’s an important aspect of your business that I’m sure a lot of people probably into it, maybe if they’ve been doing it for a few years, they’re like, “All right, well, January is usually a dead month for me.” But to know it with data and being able to plan it ahead of time makes your business a lot less stressful. So we have our foundation, we have the walls, which is the analysis piece. What is next on this framework?

Kathy Svetina: So the third piece is what I call interior design. That is your financial systems and your processes. I like to equate this just like you would not have a bathtub in the middle of your kitchen because it just doesn’t make sense, right?

Joe Casabona: Yeah.

Kathy Svetina: You want to use the financial system and the processes that you have that actually makes sense for your business. So what does that mean? That means that if you’re having a lot of recurring revenue from your clients that you’re invoicing them on a monthly basis, and if you’re typing it out on a Word document every month, that takes a lot of time and actually money, because instead of you spending time and working on client, billable hours, you’re there typing these invoices. So what you want to make sure is that what you’re using, how you’re operating your business actually makes sense for you. So you want to automate as much as you can when it comes to your financials.

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Joe Casabona: I’ve had like an accounting software sojourn, we’ll say. Because like I was on FreshBooks for a very long time, and then I started to get into the products business or the products side of business, and I was like, “I’m going to be doing less invoicing. I’m going to have more products to account for. FreshBooks doesn’t really do a great job with products.” And so I looked at QuickBooks at a time where I was still doing products and services and I had a lot of recurring revenue from hosting. But QuickBooks, the plan I was on at least, didn’t allow for recurring invoices. I don’t know if that’s changed since. But that was an important part of my business.

I converted to doing it manually. So I did reference the spreadsheet that I backed up from FreshBooks, and the month that I had to write down the notes, and I’m like, “I’m spending too much…” I just switched back to FreshBooks. And then I use WooCommerce for my products reporting. But having the right financial system. I guess all of that rambling leads me to ask, are there tools that you recommend? Or do you have a recommendation for evaluating the right kind of tools? And I know I’ve talked exclusively about accounting software there, but are there other things that we should think about?

Kathy Svetina: There actually are. It’s interesting. QuickBooks is really popular in the US. But if you go overseas, especially in UK, Xero is very popular. Xero is another accounting software. They’re starting to gain more and more arc in the US now. It is very automated. It’s super easy to use. It’s user-friendly. That might be another accounting software. So if you’re really struggling with your QuickBooks, or FreshBooks, or whatever you’re using, go take a look at Xero and see maybe that’s a better option for you.

Joe Casabona: That’s great. I’ve heard of Xero. I actually asked my accountant… And may this is another piece of advice is ask your accountant what they like. I said, “I’m on FreshBooks. What do you like? I’m thinking about moving.” And she’s like, “I like QuickBooks the best. I’m based in the US.” And she said, “A software I absolutely can’t work with is Xero.” I’m wondering if maybe it’s just because it’s UK-based, or maybe the way she has her system set up. But if your accountant uses Xero or like Xero, Xero is a really good one to think about. I had a second thought that I totally lost. So we’ll have to revisit that. But I think that evaluating software like that is really important, and thinking about what you said, the interior design. I think that’s so important.

Kathy Svetina: And you bring in an excellent point here too. And I would caution you here as well. Because accountants are very used to the software that they’re using. So majority in the US like to use QuickBooks because they’ve been using it forever and that’s what they like and they’re really comfortable with, and they don’t want to learn another software. However, if you’re not getting the reports and if you’re not getting the information that you truly need to run your business well, you shouldn’t be using it just because that’s your accountant’s preference. You should be using what works for you. Your accountant works for you and not the other way around.

Joe Casabona: Again, that’s a very good point. That’s kind of the reason I’m thinking about switching from FreshBooks. And full disclosure of FreshBooks, I’ve had Mike McDermott on the show, FreshBooks sponsor of this show in the past, and I love FreshBooks. But I had to jump through a lot of hoops to get that… They have this feature called “other income,” which is supposed to kind of be the way that they handle products and non-invoiced income. And the reporting for that is very poor.

I had to export the CSV and run my own reports on the CSV to get the information that I needed. And that’s not why I’m paying for accounting software. Or that’s not why I’m paying my accountant. I want to make my job easier, I want to make her job easier. So going back to I found an accountant that understands my business well, you know, finding someone who knows your business well, and finding the tools that help you understand your business well I think are, again, very important. So accountants are very used to the software they’re using. Really important thing to remember.

Kathy Svetina: Yeah.

Joe Casabona: All right. Let’s see. So we just did interior design, financial systems and processes. Is there anything else that you’d want to elaborate on there? I know we spent a lot of time on accounting software. But are there other things that… I don’t even know what I would ask for this question, I guess. Is there something besides accounting software we should know about?

Kathy Svetina: Well, actually, this is a good segue into the other piece of the framer, which is the roof. And this is where the actual financial planning comes in. There are a couple of tools that you can use that to help you with that. And we can go into the detail. The financial planning is just like the roof of the house. It protects you. It protects whatever it’s under all the foundation that you’ve done, your interior design, your walls.

In reality, in the business, there’s going to be rainy days. The idea is that you want to protect yourself from them as much as you can. The truth is you’re never going to be able to completely eliminate risk in your business. It’s just not possible. But you can at least put the placements together so that you can anticipate, you can see, you know, maybe three months or six months down the road, just like you said, you might have a seasonal business and you’re going to have a famine. How do you prepare for it now?

The way how to do that is, one, you have to know about it, which is where the financial analysis comes in. And how do you prepare for it? You plan for it. You figure out, what is it that I can do right now? A good tool to help you with that… there’s actually two of them. By the way, just a side note, I’m not sponsored by any of those. I just think they’re really good tools. So what is called the Spotlight Reporting. And then the second one is called Fathom.

They’re both add-ons. You can either put them on QuickBooks or Xero. Actually, Fathom integrates with QuickBooks. I think if you’re on enterprise version, or whatever the highest version to have, you actually have access to it as well. That is going to help you plan for the future. It’s going to help you set your budget. It’s going to help you set the forecast. The nice thing about it as well as to that it’s very graphical. It’s super easy to use and it also gives you definitions of what everything actually means. So if you look at your gross profits, it will tell you how has been over the previous month, and actually what it really means and how you should be looking at it.

Joe Casabona: That’s great. I will include both of those in the show. I’ll include everything we talked about so far over in the show notes at

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Joe Casabona: Maybe we can talk a little bit more about these tools in Build Something More. Like take a deeper dive into Fathom, if you’re prepared for that. We didn’t talk about this beforehand. So if it’s a tool that you’re familiar with, maybe we can kind of talk a little bit more about it. So we’ve got the foundation, the walls, the interior design, the roof. Do we have like a patio or a lawn or anything like that? Or is that the fourth step? That sounded more than I intended it to be.

Kathy Svetina: I like the patio. We do have the security system.

Joe Casabona: Nice.

Kathy Svetina: Which is a piece that so often gets forgotten in the small business world. And what does that mean? It means that you’re protecting your finances. In finance world, we like to call it the internal control, a set of internal controls. So what are they? They’re essentially safeguards for all your finances. So what that means in practicality is that you don’t want to give the keys to your kingdom to just one person – that they’re handling your finances.

For example, you don’t want your bookkeeper or accountant enter the bills, and also pay them, and reconcile them with the bank because that can get you in a lot of trouble. Unfortunately, if you have a person that’s not really ethical, they can start stealing money from you. So that is a real important topic for business owners to know that there’s risk for it. But you can definitely prepare for it and you can safeguard yourself.

Joe Casabona: Wow, that’s really interesting. Again, a lot of the listeners here are freelancers, small business owners, who are probably doing almost, if not everything, almost everything themselves. But as you grow, and you start to delegate more, that’s something really important to think about that I probably would not have thought about.

I recently hired a virtual assistant and I was thinking maybe I can have her do the invoicing, so I don’t have to do it. Maybe I can have her do the bill pa, so I don’t have to do that. But having the safeguards in place, especially if you have never met a person like your VA face to face, if they are in a different country, maybe there is an extra layer there that you need to add so that you don’t have to worry about: “Can I trust them? Are they stealing from me?” Things like that.

Kathy Svetina: These are uncomfortable questions to think about it and just makes people really uncomfortable. But the reality is that it can happen. You just want to protect yourself. Like if you have someone enter your bills, which is fine, but don’t make them pay it as well. What you can do, you can use, and it actually puts a workflow in place so that someone actually enters all your bills in and then you go and you check it off, and you say, “I’m going to pay this, I’m going to pay this, I approve it, I approve it, and then they pay it. So that way you can actually see what you paying and how much you’re paying. But you’re delegating a portion, but not all of it.

The other piece that I also want to make a point that is really important is if you’re doing your financial analysis, and if you understand your numbers and you see the trends, it’s a lot easier to see if there’s something totally happening in business because you have these benchmarks to say, “Well, every March I pay, you know, $12,000, but this month it’s 13,000. What happened? Why was there such a discrepancy? Let me take a look at it?”

Joe Casabona: Right. What a great point! What a great point! Again, to go back to me hiring a VA, I would assign her tasks and I’d be like, “I think this would take me two hours or whatever.” I had no idea how long it would take her though. So I wasn’t really checking her time. When I did, I found that she was spending way too much time on certain tasks. That might have been a communication breakdown. That’s what I would like to think. I would like to think it was a communication breakdown and she wasn’t just spending extra time to get extra money out of me. But having the benchmarks now to be like, “This should take you five hours. If you get to four hours and you are not even close to done with this task, you need to let me know.” It’s the same thing. This month should only cost me 1,200 bucks. Why is it costing me 13,000 or whatever? Unless you said 12,000 and 13,000. But order of magnitude is like a really big difference, right?

Kathy Svetina: True.

Joe Casabona: Fantastic. This has been really great. I love talking finance. We got to talk finance for like a half-hour, which is super fun. First of all, is there another part of your framework before we move on to the next topic?

Kathy Svetina: No, those are all five of them.

Joe Casabona: Awesome. So if we have people listening who are like, “I really need to get my financial planning in place,” what’s a tip you would give them to get started? Maybe what’s the first step they should take?

Kathy Svetina: It depends on how big are your businesses or where you are in your business. If your business is really complex, I would say go hire someone to help you with it. There are people called the fractional CFOs, and I’m one of them. But it has to make sense for you. But if you’re a smaller business, let’s say under a million or less that you’re making annually a year, you can do a lot of it yourself with your accountants. Those tools that I recommended, Fathom and the Spotlight Reporting, are going to help you significantly. You can do a lot of it DIY style as well or you can just hire someone.

A lot of the fractional CFOs actually have office hours too. You can book with them for an hour. They have – what are they called? The strategic hours. They can help you with it. If you find someone that does offer services like that, definitely go take advantage of it if you’re interested in that.

Joe Casabona: Awesome. I think and Build Something More perhaps we’ll expand upon the strategic hours too, because that sounds like something very interesting to me. And I’m sure it’s probably relatable for a lot of people listening. But I love the term fractional CFO. It’s like a person who acts like a CFO to a lot of different companies or partially a CFO to a lot of different companies, right?

Kathy Svetina: Yeah, exactly. Because smaller companies, they don’t need a full-time CFO, and full-time CFOs are expensive. So what you do, based on however many hours or however much support you need, you get a fraction of the time. And that’s what they call fractional CFOs.

Joe Casabona: Love that. That’s really interesting. And I will just say I used to work at the University of Scranton, and we’re technically a nonprofit. So I could see how much all of the C-level employees made, and our CFO was paid the most by a longshot. Like definitely made the most at the school. Awesome.

This has been fantastic. Before we get to how people can find you, I do need to ask you my favorite question, which is, do you have any trade secrets for us?

Kathy Svetina: Yes. Yes, I do. If you’re trying to do the financial planning yourself, one thing that I will caution you is you’re not trying to make your numbers perfect. You’re not looking at the crystal ball and trying to figure out what is really going to happen. What you’re trying to do is get enough information and data so that you can make the best decision that you possibly can right now. So don’t go chasing perfection, chase the best that you can do.

Joe Casabona: I love that. That’s such great advice. Enough data to make the best decision you can make right now. I love that. Kathy, this has been absolutely fabulous. Thank you so much for your time. If people want to learn more about you, where can they go?

Kathy Svetina: They can either find me on LinkedIn under Kathy Svetina, or they can go on my website on

Joe Casabona: All right. I will include those and everything we talked about in the show notes over at If you are a member, stick around in Build Something More. We’re going to be talking about a little bit more about that software and strategic hours for fractional CFOs. I think it’s going to be a delight. If you’re not a member, you can sign up over at

Thank you to our sponsors TextExpanderRestrict Content Pro, and Mindsize. I really appreciate your support. Thank you for listening. And Kathy, thanks so much for your time. I really appreciate it.

Kathy Svetina: Thanks so much for having me.

Joe Casabona: All right. And until next time, get out there and build something.

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