Daily Business Checklist and Diary App

“You must gain control of your money or the lack of it will forever control you” — Dave Ramsey There’s a couple of truisms about money that successful savers know all too well. The first and foremost is if you are to have success building wealth your life’s financial plan must be intentional and executed over a long period of time. Decades really. While all too many people will fight it, building a budget is the first step to taking charge of your finances. The traditional budget requires you study prior spending and build your budget from there. Chances are if you are reading this you are interested in saving more and spending less. That why I suggest you adopt a zero based budget. Zero-based budgeting (ZBB) is a method of budgeting in which all expenses must be justified for each new period. The process of zero-based budgeting starts from a "zero base," and every line item is analyzed for its needs and costs. A zero based budget requires you justify every item you spend on. So, for example lets look at that Apple phone that’s costing you over $50 a month. When comes time for renewal would a $200 Moto or similar budget phone do the job? I use my old, well off contract phone, for texts, calls, the weather and occasional directions. The basic models do all that and more. A good friend of mine purchase a few generations old Apple phone for just a few dollars. Apple and other phones have had all the key functionalities for many generations. Old ones work just fine. By the by just because a phone is off contract doesn’t mean you need to run to the phone store for the latest model. I do expect my phones battery to “give up the ghost” eventually. I’ve looked up the cost and feasibility of getting a new battery and it is $49.99 installed. If you want to save money sacrifice may be the order of the day. You will hear people talk about the difference between Needs and Wants. You probably need a phone, you want the new model phone with its cool screen and the xtra special gizmos but the reality is you dont need it. I am not advocating totally denying yourself some joy but you have to be selective. In the words of Paula Pant “You can afford anything just not everything.” “Do not save what is left after spending; instead spend what is left after saving.” ― Warren Buffett For me the best way to save was to do so first. You’ll hear the expression ‘pay yourself first’ it means having savings taken out from your pay first and then lived off the rest. The old adage “We don’t miss what We don’t see” is very true. I signed up for pretax 401k deductions many years ago and I joined my companies the stock purchase plan. $50 twice a month. Over the years I upped the percent going into my 401k plan. When I reluctantly retired I did so very comfortably and well after I could afford to. “The idea that a bell rings to signal when investors should get into or out of the market is simply not credible. After nearly 50 years in this business, I do not know of anybody who has done it successfully and consistently. I don't even know anybody who knows anybody who has done it successfully and consistently.” — John C. ‘Jack’ Bogle, Founder Vanguard Group Unfortunately savings isn’t enough, you need to do something with the money. In the beginning I bought and held individual stocks. Index funds although available since Vanguard introduced them 1976 hadn’t yet caught on in a big way. Over time more and more of my investment are in low caot index funds. (I prefer the liquidity of ETFs) ETFS (Electronically Traded Funds) are like mutual funds but are traded in the market. In my experience they ‘are set it and forget it’ instruments for long term investing. "Successful Investing takes time, discipline, and patience. No matter how great the talent or effort, some things just take time" ― Warren Buffett Over the course of your investing life there will be temptations to ‘chase returns’. There will be no shortage of ‘Snake Oil’ salesman dangling the carrot of quick wealth and returns. Remember: if it sounds to good to be true is almost certainly is. Run away, no fooling rum no one can sell you something if you choose not to listen. Investing is one of the few things in life where boring and steady are good. Finally I leave you with a quote from Mark Twain the sooner you get on track with a zero based budget the sooner youll get to your destination Financial Independence. Oh and you can retire earkyif you so choose. “The secret of getting ahead is getting started.” – Mark Twain
Ray at work

Daily Business Checklist and Diary App – Every Business has a list of things that need to get done if you are to stay in business and be successful.  Those ‘checklists’ can vary widely and are bespoke to your individual business needs.  For example, my Daily Business Checklist and Diary App starts with:

  1. Check website/blog for comments
  2. Review my Email
  3. Review website statistics and download log 

I did a little “net surfing” and I learned there are many Business Checklist Templates out there, but they are static and generic.  [Example Here] For some businesses there will be critical items like reviewing inventory that has a limited shelf life.  If you don’t have any raw materials your business might come to a standstill and customers will be disappointed. That could be detrimental to future business and that is disastrous.   So, I wanted to build a Daily Business Checklist and Diary App where you can tailor to your business and that you can enter a daily diary of important tasks.  The Daily Business Checklist and Diary App is what I came up with and it has three key components:

Daily Business Checklist and Diary App
Daily Business Checklist and Diary App

When you start the day, you know what has to be accomplished.  Any unchecked items from yesterday are subject to your immediate investigation. 

Daily Business Checklist and Diary App

Daily Task Maintenance
This simple form will allow you to add (up to 15), edit and delete checklist.
1. Simply add a brief name.
2. Choose a frequency: Daily, Weekdays, Weekends and Custom allows for select specific days for each week.  In our example above Inventory is done on Wednesdays and Saturdays.
3. Set a To and From date (some of your tasks may be seasonal).
4. Add a description

Daily Business Checklist and Diary App - Daily Diary

Daily Diary (click on shaded Day header)
In this example the user was checking the bank balance (2nd item on our example checklist) and noted a $25 dollar debit (charge). Since it was too late in the day to follow-up, he left a note in the Daily Diary for the next day.  The app facilitates capturing key day events in a single retrievable repository.  No “I left a note didn’t you see it?” 

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Daily Business Checklist and Diary App

Raymond Mills MBA, MS

Raymond Mills, M.B.A., M.S.  has spent over 20 years of his career as Accountant, Investment Bank and Credit Card Technical Auditor/ Data Analyst.  His specialty was using Excel to get Big Databases including Teradata, Oracle, Sequel Server and Sybase to give up their secrets.

Ray has said “I love nothing better than using VBA to unleash the power of Microsoft Office.”  If you have a challenge with Excel, Access or Word and would like to speak with Ray,  you can get his contact details by clicking here: Contact Me 

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