Tips – Pass Through

Pass ThroughI just received a question the other day that involved a salon. The owner of the salon received tips from customers on a credit card. Those tips are to be given to the stylist that performed the work. In the past the owner thought of these as a expense. However, they actually are not. The owner stated “it’s money going out, it has to be an expense”

These are what are called a pass-through expense and they should not show up on the P&L. The money coming in should be recorded on the balance sheet as a liability (owner has an obligation to pay out funds) and cash is increased. When you money is going out the liability is reduced and cash is reduced. Also both balance sheet accounts. The P&L is never effected in this transaction.

This works the same way for restaurants, bars or any business that receives tips from customers that get paid to employees.

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Excel – Saturday

Saturday Excel

I often hear people ask what are some of the most common shortcuts that are used in excel that can help make my work easier.  Here are the ones that I use often and hope they will help you too!

  • Cut, copy, paste – Ctrl X, C, V. You should be very familiar with these shortcuts because they are the same ones used in other programs like word.
  • Paste Special– Control + Alt + V  Paste Special is often used when you just want to paste a value, formula, or formatting.  Having this shortcut will save you valuable time!
  • Fill handle – Just double click that little square at the bottom right of any selection. This isn’t a keyboard shortcut but it is a very helpful tool, because it will copy a formula (or a pattern) down a column to the bottom of a table in just one click.
  • Fill down– Control D. This will help when you want to copy values from a cell above without having to copy and paste the entire section.   Similarly, you can also fill right, Control + R
  • Select all – Control A. This shortcut will select all data in the “same region”. This is used whenever you want to select an entire table.
  • Autosum – Alt =. Allows you to automatically insert the sum function into your spreadsheet for rows, columns, or even the entire table.
  • Toggle filters– Control + Shift + L  We recently learned about filters, this is a great shortcut to apply and clear filters to your table.
  • Go to first cell / last cell – Control + Home, Control + End.  Very helpful when you are working with a large dataset and want to get to the beginning or end of the table.
  • Data navigation – Control + arrow key(s) Similar to the first and last cell, this shortcut gets you to the edges of the data instantly and also help when working with large datasets.
  • New Table – Control + T.  Very handy when you want to convert a set of data to a “proper” Excel table with filters and formatting. Tables are a powerful and convenient way to handle lots of data easily.

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Cash Flow Forecast

Logo 7.1.

Cash flow forecasting is a powerful tool for small businesses and is vital to the survival for some businesses. The good news is that it doesn’t have to be complicated. There are just a few things that, after understanding makes the process easier.

The first thing to understand is that change in your cash position does not equal your net profit. Depending on your business you will have adjustments to your net income each month that are not cash transactions. For example, that depreciation amount on the P&L does not affect cash. Do you have prepaid expenses? Those, as they are allocated out over time do not affect cash. It’s these types of amounts that need to be ignored while forecasting your cash flow.

Another thing to understand is that as with any forecast, flexibility, and a realistic approach is needed. Realistic approach is simple, don’t forecast $100,000 in revenue or sales when you are averaging $20,000. The flexibility approach comes into play when as the months go on and you are comparing your actual to your forecast you make adjustments. In business, surprise expenses come up that you don’t expect. Hopefully, surprise income is the case, like that hurricane that spiked your retail sales.

Excel is a great tool for developing forecasts. I have developed a template that can be customized to your business. See below. If you would like a copy of it feel free to email me at

Cash Flow Spreadsheet

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Excel – Saturday

Saturday Excel

There are several different counting formulas in excel and they can sometimes get confusing which one you would use for a certain situation.  Today we are going to review when you use each of the three main counting formulas which are COUNT, COUNTA, and COUNTIF.

First, COUNT is a formula used to count the number of cells that contain numbers.   Below you can see an example of this formula that is using a list of numbers in excel.  Cell A9 contains the formula that is counting all of the cells above it that contain a number in them.


Next, COUNTA is a formula use to count the number of cells that contain numbers or letters in them.  Below you can see an example of this formula that is counting the number of cells that have names of fruits in them.  Cell A11 contains the formula that is counting all of the cells above it with either letters or numbers in them.


Finally, COUNTIF is a formula used to count the cells based on one criteria, for this example we are going to count the number of cells that have a value greater than 9.  Cell A9 contains the formula that is reporting the answer 2 because only two cells included in the formula are greater than 9.  The cells greater than 9 have been highlighted in yellow.


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