While drawing up a business plan is something which is encouraged, despite the fact that the actual running of your operations will probably differ considerably from the plan, there will be a period during which it will prove difficult to keep tabs on your expenses. Not so much by way of how much you spend and what you spend on, but rather what value you get out of that expenditure. Some expenses simply cannot be disputed as to their importance, but you never really know how much value you’re getting out of them until you really need to.
Fortunately this is one of the business expenses which tends to show its value some way or the other, in good time too, but it is indeed one of which the value is not immediately apparent. Unless you’re operating a low-overhead business or one which doesn’t hold high-value physical assets, there are no two ways about it. You definitely need business insurance.
Granted, this is indeed a form of insurance, but I felt it pertinent to mention it separately because legal insurance isn’t often operated like any other kind of insurance cover. An independent insurer usually offers the coverage and the payout you’d subsequently be eligible for is then used to pay for legal fees. You’d still need to go out and find legal professionals to handle your affairs though, if and when the need arises and that’s when the value reveals itself.
Marketing & Advertising
It’s very easy to spend money on marketing and advertising without realizing any immediate results. Sometimes something as simple as a pull-out pamphlet can sit in the house of a prospective customer for months and months until they make their first purchase following their discovery of it. You still need to spend some money on marketing and advertising however.
Corporate Social Responsibility
CSI is a bit of a tricky business expense to have to navigate since it implies that you seek nothing in return for your contributions to the society which likely contributes to the continued success of your business. We all know that’s not the complete story though because at the very least you’d seek to gain some exposure out of your CSI efforts. Don’t even waste your time trying to put some tangible, measurable value on your CSI efforts. Just wait it out until it all becomes clear unto itself.
Governments by design are the friends of business and ideally they seek to help businesses survive and thrive because that’s where their tax base originates. Income tax is however another one of those business expenses of which the value is never immediately apparent, but what you should do is make full use of any public services available to your business which are funded in part by your tax dollars.
How do you measure the impact of something like absenteeism? It’s hard, but that still doesn’t mean you should neglect to invest in the health and wellness of your employees. They are after all your most prized assets.