4 reasons to take online payments with eWAY in Saasu

Saasu Online Accounting & eWAY integration Whether you sell products or services, accepting credit card payments can improve your cashflow levels and reduce your accounting workload.

It also helps you avoid the common headaches around chasing and receiving payments. You can get paid faster, automatically and with no fuss.

The days when this was a complex and expensive exercise are gone. In fact, you can do it right now from inside Saasu, without any setup, because we partnered with the folks at eWAY.

eWAY is a global all-in-one payment services provider, focused on helping businesses like yours accept secure credit card payments from customers around the world.

The integration between Saasu and eWAY means you can start taking payments online by adding a pay online button or link to your orders and invoices. All your customers have to do is pay, and the integration takes care of the rest.

Why Saasu + eWAY

  • It’s a huge time saver. Your customers can pay you quickly, get a receipt automatically, and the payment gets instantly reconciled in Saasu
  • The more payment options you display on your invoices, the higher the chances your customers will pay you on time
  • You can collect payments on the go and charge on the spot
  • You can integrate with your shopping cart and automate your entire sales process

If you’re already an eWAY customer, you can set this up in Saasu right now. It only takes a few steps.

If you’re new to eWAY, we’re pretty sure you’re going to love them. Like Saasu, they have real human support, their rates are super competitive and they have plans to suit every business, from basic payment gateway to a complete merchant platform. It only takes about 10 minutes to get you activated. Check them out.

If you’re already using the integration, we’d love to hear how you’re going. Leave a comment below and we’ll share it with the team.

7 silent rituals of small business success

Small Business Success Rituals

1. Motivate

I get up early each morning to a ritual. I get out of bed with no alarm, I drink water, I buy a good coffee and I drive to work drinking that and listening to motivational eBooks or podcast. Before I start work I read my goals, watch a motivational video and set my most important task (MIT) and five small tasks.

There are two things I’m not happy about in the above. I don’t always have a decent breakfast and I don’t stretch. I want to do stretching each morning like my 104 year old grandfather attested to but I’m often too keen to get going so I skip it.

Getting going and feeling the crisp morning air is the best way to wake up, feel alive and remind yourself you only get to live once so why not have high standards while doing that such as early starts.

2. Gurus

I’ve surrounded myself with Gurus, online. It works for me. I’ve had in person mentors over time but I found it can be much harder to say no to their advice, say no to the catchups and sometimes trust their advice if it isn’t derived or based on the industry I’m in. What works in another industry can fail badly in my software industry. The mentors I’d like in my own industry are hard to get to in reality so the virtual approach is better.

You can actually have the best virtual mentors. The most successful people in your industry have almost certainly written a book, done interviews, podcasts or given speeches. Hunt out their work, their words and wisdom. Consume it over and over until you start thinking the way they do.

I don’t want to have in person mentor meetups. I enjoy them, the company of people I respect greatly but I’m also suffering an opportunity cost each time I do that in terms of activities around my staff, product, customers and business that don’t get done. I want to curate which ones I follow online and regularly. It also allows me to spend lots of time on people that have passed but are really important (e.g. Aaron Swartz) My 10 key virtual mentors in no particular order are Anthony Robbins, Elon Musk, Brian Tracy, Stefan Pylarinos, Steve Jobs, Aaron Swartz, Kevin Kruse, Jimmy Wales and Mark Suster.

3. 100 People

Managing my 100 special people and influencers list is critical. You can’t manage lots of relationships well. I have a list of 100 people I need to dedicate most of my time to. About 30 are family – yes not all family gets in the list because honestly they don’t deserve it ahead of other people who I know that are doing amazing and often selfless things with their lives.

4. Killing friction

Businesses can have cancers eating away at them. Roadblocks can be stifling your sales. Really you could spend half your days just killing off things hurting your business, things blocking your way. Saying no to things for your staff and business. Removing friction, removing time thieves. Keep your spaceship on course and focused on the destination.

5. Filtering noise

Feature requests, information overload, sales reps, complaints, feedback, HR matters can all create lots of noise not directly contributing to growth. You need filters for these things. System filters, procedural filters and personal standards filters. The best 20% should get through and get you 80% of the result. For example at Saasu we used to take feedback via social media, service email, phone, personal email, in-app support tickets and get satisfaction. So we stopped a few of these that only impacted about 20% of the inbound and thus freeing ourselves up to actually work on solving some of the suggestions.

6. Creating and sustaining powerful rituals

Assess “what works” and “what isn’t working” in your life and your business. Write the two lists, seriously, write them now. Ok what’s on your not working list. I bet there are things there that are backed up by some serious habitual and ritualistic behaviour. You need to break the top one on your list now, today, this week. Break it by replacing it, reminding yourself about it any way you can. Share that you are going to break it with your colleagues. Write it on your desktop on your computer. Put it on a post it and stick it in your car. Stick one on your fridge. When you nail that one do the next one. To share, my one was having chocolate every night, just a few pieces. I don’t need it or want it underneath but my habit is there to satiate myself in the short term by having some. So I got my family to agree we won’t buy it. We agreed to replace it with high quality fruit item like a mango or a peach. Swap the habit. I’ve done this for 3 weeks now and it’s working fine. It’s amazing how my next biggest guilty habit shows up now that that one is gone – coffee!

7. Serving people.

Sometimes you have to throw all the rules out for a portion of your days and just help people. I take the time to answer people just because it’s the right thing to do by customers, contacts and the like. So give yourself a percentage of your time that isn’t about all of the above just to be of service. People are often surprised when I write to them personally, they don’t think they deserve it, but they do. I know they probably have kids at home, have stress and want to create happiness for themselves. Helping people along that reward is the right thing to do for all of humanity. The reality of limited time stops me doing more of it but it is one of the most satisfying things you can do in business.

Invent your own, try other people’s. I’ve just listed some that work for me. It will be different for you.

4 invoicing tweaks to make 2016 a better business year

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Here at Saasu we believe that cashflow is the number one thing you need to take care of in business, so you can sleep well at night, love what you do and expand your life.

To welcome the new year, we want to share four simple tweaks you can apply to what you’re already doing around invoicing and processes, which will deliver noticeable improvements to your bottom line.

These simple moves, often overlooked, are designed to make a quick impact on how you start 2016. The best thing, they won’t cost you a cent and they’re a great way to use this break productively.

1. Create a cashflow ritual.

It’s human nature to avoid score boards (scales, bank balances, etc.). It allows us to keep ‘busy’, dig our head in the sand, doing what’s easy and comfortable, instead of what we know we need to do. It’s important to learn to love the dashboards of life, especially financial ones in business. Creating rituals, cashflow in this case, helps with this love affair.

Start your week by reviewing what you owe, who owes you, how much work is in the pipeline and how much cash you will have for the month ahead as a result. Then list out the outcomes you need to achieve to get you where you need to be and the actions you need to take to make them happen (chasing payments, closing contracts, making more sales, etc.). This will help you focus, get out of your head and work out what to do next.

Saasu users can use Forecaster to make this happen easily. It only takes a few seconds to show you your full position. If you stick with the ritual, you will see the results.

2. Anonymise your invoicing and debt collection with one simple move.

Create a separate, generic email address for all billing and debt collection correspondence (e.g. accounts@XYZbusiness.com), even if you’re a one or two person business. This helps separate you from the billing process itself, especially if you deal with clients directly or have another prominent role in your business that you don’t want to mix up with the painful job of chasing payments.

We’ve all been in the uncomfortable position of needing a customer to make a payment but not wanting to come across as needy or unprofessional. We want the customer to keep coming back and look like we have it all handled, so there is a natural fear that chasing debt will create pressure and strain the relationship. This is why it’s  important to keep things separate.

By having a separate billing identity, you can create a virtual department at no cost, which can help bring you the cash you need on time, segment your workload and undoubtedly give you more peace of mind. If you’re a smaller business without someone specifically assigned with this responsibility, you can even go as far as hiring a virtual assistant to help you with this area of the business (if hiring someone locally isn’t on your budget).

Also use a neutral, business tone on all correspondence regarding billing, separate from your personal relationship with your client. This helps make things easier, should any issues arise later.

3.  Use four elements to get your invoices to the top of your customer’s payment list.

This is an area that is often overlooked, but communication is key. How you word an invoice and the email that goes with it, can be the difference between getting paid on time and being ignored.

Here are the components you must include on your invoices to increase the chances of receiving a timely payment:

A clear deadline for payment
Clear means specific (the actual date instead of generic wording, e.g.’within 30 days’), prominently displayed on the invoice, and clearly repeated on the email you send it with.

More than one payment option
If possible, include more than one payment option, and make it clearly visible on the invoice. Create one section specifically for payment options so they stand out. The easier these options are for the customer, the better. For example, credit card payment options are quite successful for most Saasu users, but add the ones that make sense for your business.

A clear consequence for late payment
This is super important, and perhaps one of the most effective steps you can put in place. To serve your customers effectively, you need cashflow, therefore, it’s only fair to have clear consequences in place to influence them to pay on time and create a relationship of trust and respect around billing.

The application of a consequence is a proven way to create compliance in human beings. The book Influence: Science and Practice, by Robert Cialdini is one of the best resources available on the subject, and perhaps one of the best business resources out there.

These consequences can range between the loss of a specific privilege, such as locking access to your product or service, a monetary penalty for late payments, the late delivery of a service or the use of debt collection agencies (whatever makes sense for your business).

To do this effectively, make sure you give your customers plenty of warning, and setup reminders so they don’t miss them. Be flexible and fair, but firm and consistent too. The key to getting this right is the wording, process and delivery. Automated, preferably.

The application of consequences can be used throughout your business processes, including sales, to create results, but we will leave this for another post.

A request for immediate contact regarding late payments
Some customers will have trouble paying on time, that’s just reality. By requesting upfront that they communicate immediately if they are unable to meet the deadline, you will be able to plan for cashflow shortfalls and negotiate new deadlines, part-payments or other options that will give your client a breather but still keep them accountable for the new commitment they make. The science behind this is also explained in Cialdini’s book.

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4.  Create a simple process that can be automated and repeated as much as possible without your input.

It doesn’t take much to create a simple process for invoicing and debt collection that can start giving you better results from word go. If you’re a Saasu user, you have all the tools right now to make it happen. If you’re not, there are ways to do it with a few extra steps. Your process should include the following:

  • A set time in the sales cycle for invoicing – this means you always invoice at the same time, be it at the time of sale, on completion of a particular stage or delivery of a particular service. This will be different for each business and industry, so you have to choose what makes sense for you.
  • Set specific invoice and email templates you reuse every time you bill a client, including different ones for overdue bills.
  • Automate reminders to be sent in particular intervals for unpaid invoices, including final notifications for past-due invoices before enforcing a consequence (for example, initial invoice sent on day 1, first reminder sent 5 days after, and so on).
  • Create a sub-process to handle the worst offenders. This could be a mix of phone call, final warning, sending to a debt collection agency, etc.. It could also include firing your top 5 repeat offenders as clients after considering whether the strain on your cashflow, resources and energy are worth the hassle of working with them.

Saasu users can implement the process above using a combination of Templates and Automated Statements engine. Otherwise, you can use your current email system (including calendar) and word processor to achieve similar result.

Every area of your business can improve massively with small, incremental improvements. The key is to keep it simple and doable. If cashflow is the only area you target and get better results at, you’re on your way to a great 2016.

Here’s to new beginnings. In business and in life.

Introducing New Saasu Mobile App for Apple & Android

Saasu Mobile App

We’re thrilled to announce Saasu’s brand new mobile app for Android and Apple. Clean, fast online accounting for your mobile device has arrived.

This is something that you have wanted for a long time now. I am a CEO at the front line in the product design process – I’m not a Sales CEO – I make things. So instead of a big Mobile App sales pitch I’m going to tell you what the app does but first give you an explanation that I owe you all as very patient Saasu customers.

As a team we wanted to learn to craft mobile apps really well. We have designed and built this app many times over. There have been many iterations over a long period of time. Our previous mobile app was a third party app. We learned that we don’t achieve dreams that way. We knew that to really achieve our dreams in the mobile app space we had to be the maker. At Saasu we are a maker of things.

Our vision is to craft the complexity out of small business and we invest the time to do that well.

This first app is for customers that want to be able to:

  • Call or email anyone really quickly from your Saasu Contacts list.
  • Capture expenses on the fly and attach photos or images to them.
  • See a Saasu Timeline of all the invoices and new contacts rolling in.
  • Create quotes, orders, invoices and email them.
  • Search your transactions and contacts instantly with Saasu Search.
  • Quickly flip between your different business accounting files.

So this is what we have built and released overnight into Google Play, ready for you to download. We have also submitted it to Apple AppStore for approval so we expect it to be available within the next 10 business days. [UPDATE 2015: iPhone & iPad app are now available]

What this mobile app isn’t is payments or bank feed management. It’s also not a performance dashboard. These apps will come next. This is our crafted app for the above needs specifically. It obeys Pareto’s law in that it is just 20% of what Saasu will actually do in mobile app space but we help out 80% of our customers from today.

This will change what Saasu means to you in your small business. You can manage your business from anywhere on an Android or iOS device. You can win business on the go with quick quoting and invoicing. Capture your expenses. Search, call or email your customers. All within a few seconds. It’s fast, clean and easy to use.

We hope you love it.

Connect your favourite apps to Saasu with Zapier

Zapier and Saasu

A couple of months ago we announced the beta release of the Zapier connection to Saasu. After ironing out the last details, we’re ready to invite our customers to start building some test Zaps.

Zapier gets Saasu and your other business apps to talk to each other to help simplify, automate and make your processes error-proof. It also caters for a multitude of scenarios and solves specific problems. Just map out what you want to achieve between apps and create the zaps to make it happen.

The beauty of Zapier is that you can connect stacks of apps to Saasu without having to wait for our development team. We’ve done all the work behind the scenes so that you can automate connections with just a few clicks.

If you haven’t used Zapier before, it’s super intuitive. All you need is a Zapier account, then follow these simple steps, make your zaps and watch them do the work for you.

We’re officially entering the two-week feedback phase (invite-only), required for Saasu to get listed on the Zapier website and make the connection available to the world. If you’d like to be first-off, just email service@saasu.com and we’ll send you the details.

This is another step towards liberating you from operational burden.

Christmas deals on Saasu add-ons

Online Accounting Xmas Specials

As your business changes and grows, so do your needs in terms of systems and processes.

As we’re about to start a new year, it’s a great time to review what’s not working and streamline your business to free you up to do what you love. That’s when Saasu’s powerful add-ons come in handy.

Alight of the spirit of fresh starts, we got together with some of our add-on partners to give Saasu customers some sweet, exclusive deals. Enjoy!

Merry Christmas from the Saasu team.

PAYMENTS

eWAY
eWAY is a global leading payment provider processing billions in payments each year. eWAY can be easily setup in Saasu, so that your customers can pay your invoices online with their credit cards.

Saasu customers can take advantage of eWAY’s flat 2.6% rate for ALL card types in Australia. eWAY is offering an exclusive $100 cash back offer if you become an active eWAY merchant before 5pm on 24/12/2015* This offer only applies to eWAY’s all new HAVE A GO plan in Australia only. Sign up here.

OzForex
OzForex are a leading provider of online international payments services across the globe. In Saasu you can click ‘Pay with OzForex’ on your international purchase invoices to access great exchange rates and save money on fees.

New customers: Get 10 fee free transfers (valued at 10x$15)
Existing customers: Get 5 fee free transfers (valued at 5x$15)

Please apply for this Christmas deal before 31st January 2016 – your fee free deals will not expire. Just email ‘support@ozforex.com.au’ with your OzForex username, the code Saasu15 and the team will apply the Christmas deal to your profile.

EXPENSES

IQBoxy
IQBoxy is a great Mobile & Watch app to collect, categorise and store receipts, generate expenses reports and sync to your Saasu account.

New IQBoxy customers who connect their Saasu Account inside the IQBoxy app before 1st February 2016 will receive 50% OFF their monthly PRIME membership for the first 6 months (valued at $18 per seat). This discount also extends to an unlimited number of additional employees on-boarded onto the account using IQBoxy’s Linked Accounts option.

To redeem, get the IQBoxy app, register and email hello@iqboxy.com with your registered email and this code: SAASUSANTA (prior to 1st February 2016).

TIME & PROJECTS

AroFlo
AroFlo is a powerful job management system for tradies who want to run their business on the go, with seamless integration with Saasu.

Any Saasu customer who signs up to AroFlo before 31st January 2016 will receive free Saasu integration (normally $750!). To take advantage of this limited time offer, Saasu customers must mention this promotion on sign up.

*Offer is only valid for new AroFlo customers who pay their full AroFlo set-up costs prior to 31st January 2016. Free Saasu integration covers one company file only. Any additional integration links for other company files will be charged at the regular rate of $750 ex-GST.

E-COMMERCE

Neto
If you sell online, or are looking to upgrade platforms, Neto is designed to grow with your business. Neto’s software allows retailers and wholesalers, to develop powerful online stores by selling across multiple sales channels. You can also streamline operations by automating shipping and syncing invoices, customers, payments and credits with Saasu.

Saasu customers new to Neto get:

  • 6 months free of Neto connect – the add on module that allows you to integrate with Saasu
  • 20% off eCommerce website design services

The offer is valid until the 31st January (for new customers only). Redeem here.

SUPPLY CHAIN

EdiPath
EdiPath Plugins add EDI capability to Saasu so you can transact electronically with your customers and suppliers. EdiPath Plugins also helps you integrate your own software systems/websites with Saasu.

Any Saasu customer who signs up with EdiPath by 31st January will get:

  • 6 months extra free on a 12 month pre-paid plan (plans start at $19 only)
  • Any setup for any EDI connection free (valued at $100 to $2,400 depending on the number of EDI Plugins and type of EDI integration)

To get the deal, email info@edipath.com.au and use offer code “Saasu2016”. From there, the team at EdiPath will set you up.

CUSTOMERS

iGlobe
iGlobe CRM is a built-in CRM app for Microsoft Office 365 which can retrieve accounts from Saasu.

Signup in December and get a free three-month license of the complete iGlobe CRM Suite. This will include:

  • iGlobe CRM Office 365 (normally $28.99 user/month)
  • iGlobe eMarketing Office 365 price (normally $28.99 user/month)
  • iGlobe Social Connector
  • iGlobe Outlook App
  • iGlobe Outlook contact importer for iGlobe CRM
  • Excel App for iGlobe CRM
  • Word App for iGlobe CRM

The offer also includes a free Get Started pack. To sign up, email info@iglobecrm.com with your contact details, number of users and use the campaign code SAASUIGLOBE.

PAYROLL

KeyPay
Keypay is a powerful cloud payroll product with Award Interpretation, preconfigured Modern Awards, rostering, Native IOS Time & Attendance and best in class payroll suitable for businesses from one to thousands of employees. The integration to Saasu gives our customers with more robust payroll needs a great option for their business.

For the month of December 2015, all new SAASU signups on KeyPay get 90 days FREE trial on Plus Features. Sign up here.

All these deals were kindly offered by the awesome add-on partners listed above. If you have any questions about the offers, please contact their teams directly.

Web Marketing That Works

web marketing that works

Recently I got to a book in my “to read” pile’s’ of books. I have piles because I buy a lot of books and also receive quite a few books as gifts so it can take me time to get through them.

Adam Franklin and Toby Jenkins who wrote this book sent it to me. They are seriously great guys with awesome energy and ideas. They are also a Saasu customer and we get some mentions. We are just a small part of their successful machine.

It is one of the best books I’ve read in a long time. So I decided to break my rule and write up a book review but as a list of the 15 key points from my reading notes. I always take reading notes as concepts lock in better. I sincerely think that this book would make a huge difference to many small businesses. I’m so serious about this that if you are a small business customer of Saasu then go buy it before Christmas, email me the proof of purchase to marc@saasu.com and I will organise my accounts team to give you that entire value back as subscription time on your Saasu subscription.

I want you to read it because if you grow your business, you win, your family wins and Saasu wins in its goal to liberate and grow small business. I get no commission or other financial reward for promoting this book. I sincerely just want people to learn, implement, grow and win from this book. That’s the kind of wealth I’m after at this stage of my life.

For many years I’ve watched Adam Franklin and Toby Jenkins from afar. I listen to their WMTW podcasts and read their emails. They constantly attract my attention. Their writing and online content lures me in so what a place to start to learn that art. I only read 1 in 10 marketing emails I receive so they are doing something very right.

Here’s some key concepts they cover giving you a mezza plate starter on how to master the attention economy:

1. Attention is the new economy – you must earn attention as buying it is now very expensive.
2. Sales is begging for attention one person at a time. Advertising is buying attention but content marketing is about earning attention.
3. You can earn future attention with remarkable present day content.
4. Build web marketing assets – content getting attention gains in value as comments are left. It pays dividends like opt-ins, trust and future attention.
5. You need flagship content as the cornerstone of your web marketing strategy.
6. Web strategy is about understanding buyer persons – what problem do you solve for them?
7. Your metrics should track through to your business goals.
8. Landing pages, lean navigation (to prevent traffic leaks) and social proof are critical.
9. Text emails really work at the point where you are having a conversation that is at the commercial conversion end of the pipeline
10. If you don’t have a call to action you are wasting attention.
11 It’s not all written. Videos, webinars, infographics and podcasts are getting traction. The space isn’t thick with content yet compared to online news and blog sites.
12. As you build content assets and traffic results start to diverge from the rules and blaze your own trail
13. Find your own content creation cadence, have a list of ideas ready to prevent “blank canvas” blocker
14. Don’t chase the Google algorithm just accept they rank you based on content and authority – combined with great content you will win.
15. People don’t change and this is because old habits are hard to break. Templates they provide help create the structure that helps hold onto new activities around marketing.

Motivation in small business

by Greg Rakozy

My small business kryptonite is de-motivation. If you have motivation you have to protect and sustain it in the face of business problems, anxiety and other negatives. Ironically happiness which is supposed to be a positive can kill motivation in a blink. Let’s dig into these a little.

I’m now comfortable and mostly happy with my life. That is a big problem and I’m not joking. To grow you need to be motivated. If you’re not growing you are in fact contracting. Even if you manage to maintain a state of happiness it’s very hard not to have some fear or anxiety in the background that failure is around the next corner. This is the fear that the law of impermanence is chasing you down and will eventually catch you.

Happiness or contentment is very good at creating a cruising effect. Everything is going well so you kick back, drop your guard, and switch from the life of the hard working ant to being a playful grasshopper.

This effect can slow a business and even kill it. It even kills super-power nations. Just look at the USA. It looks like a repeat of the collapse of Rome. At the height of their success people in Rome were cruising. They adored their gladiators (sports stars), they were besotted with their entertainers (celebrities) and they revelled in food and banquets (food revolution and chefs as celebs). Now “booty from abroad” and war financed it all. Toward the end most of Rome’s productivity was from outside and they ended up destroying their economy with big tax under big government. Does this feel familiar? People cruise, then they lose.

Cruising can have you in a very happy state but you’re tricking yourself because you probably have anxiety taking the edge off it, niggling away in the background. That’s what I feel each time I step back and relax. You feel you should be doing something more or that the current good times won’t last. It might also be anxiety fuelled by procrastination. A fear of the future is very real for many small business owners.

Problems can also kill motivation. As you face one problem and solve it many of us will fill the hole with a new problem. I think the older we get the more we have a tendency to do that.

So I want to share some things impacting my motivation and how I deal with it. Things that impact motivation will differ for everyone but I think some of mine are quite common amongst small business owners.

1. Arrival fallacy

This is the mental leap you make when you do complete something and you jump straight onto the next incomplete project, problem or product. You don’t stop and celebrate. It even feels like an anti-climax. You very quickly replace completed goals with new ones in your mental space. I also get down when things aren’t in a state of perfection and customers fuel that when they point out our faults. I want perfection because like Steve Jobs I believe in painting the back of the fence even though you can’t see it. However that’s hard to do when you have so many fences to build (and yes, my statement here does in itself reveal the answer to my problem).

We are never complete in software so that’s a real problem for me because in addition to this it is heavily compounded by customers who remind me of all the things that all the other software products do that they want. Or all the things they dislike and wish were built the old way that systems they came from did it. Or because we don’t have it, or our policy on free for startups really sucks when we ask them to pay 1 or 2 years down the track.

Please don’t read me as ungrateful. 95% of our customers say nothing, they love our product and stay with us. They pay Saasuians’ taxes, our health care, super and our household bills. I appreciate that. Our churn is tiny so I know customer appreciate us as a whole. It is amazing however what a small number of customers can cause for you and your mental wellbeing in small business.

Antidote: Accept that there is always more to do. You will always be imperfect and you’ll never be finished. Be satisfied that you got a goal completed. Be satisfied in the present that you progressed a goal. Note that this can actually be the cause of arrival fallacy. You bank a little bit of the goal each day so when it is complete you have it all mentally banked and done. Thus the anti-climax.

Other antidotes are gratitude, celebration and reflection. Sometimes you need to stop and appreciate where you have gotten to in the journey. When you wake up in the morning add reflection to your routine. Reflect on how lucky and grateful you are for the great people, things, experiences in your life as an abundance that most likely overwhelms the negative. Being alive, having food, your health and a place to sleep is 20% of what you have but is probably 80% of your happiness if you choose to live in gratitude.

2. Anxiety and/or depression

I get anxious and sometimes mild depression because I feel I’m not doing what I want to, saying what I want to and lastly because I sometimes feel very owned by “the system”. The government and all their reporting bodies, the complimentary legal system and the need to fit into a politically correct, compliant apathetic mould that society expects. Government is designed to fund itself by milking its small business tax cash cows to fund their inefficient activities so it’s hard not to get down about that. They hammer our workflow and cashflow to fund their taxflow.

Unsaid things cause anxiety also. I have not spoken up enough about things I don’t believe in about banks, the government, our competitors and that in itself causes disappointment in myself. The frustration of having to be politically correct while you own a small business doesn’t match with my internal desire to share my views on liberating business owners from a Slavelandia like debt and tax regime.

That has all changed now and I am embarking on a new journey in my life and for Saasu. The antidote I discovered for this is courage. Standing up to people, saying what you think despite the risk of upsetting some partners, customers and politicians.

Gratitude is excellent for anxiety and depression also. Remind yourself how lucky you are, how first world some of your problems are.

Last but most important the top antidote is to do something. Take action, transform your state from victim living in fear to fighter with courage. Shut your business, sell it, change it or invest in it. Retrench, hire or fire people. You must act.

In-action is one of the biggest drivers of anxiety and depression in my experience. In-action is the food of status-quo. It maintains your state and thus tomorrow you will get more of the same from life. You’ll get more of what you had today and what you had yesterday.

Action, she is the Goddess of good luck. Read The Richest Man in Babylon if you haven’t already.

3. Uninspiring work

If you don’t believe in something but you have to work on it then it becomes your job. That’s not your passion. How do you get up in the morning if it isn’t? How can you motivate yourself if most of your day isn’t your passion?

Antidote: Stop doing stuff you don’t like. Find a way, make it happen. Outsource, hire, kill it. Whatever it takes to bring back motivation. Without motivation you will not grow. I think it’s better to spend 100% of my time on my passion and instead outsource or delegate the things I don’t wan’t to do. In a new small business or startup the first person to hire is someone that loves doing the thing you hate doing that is important for the business model. It could be admin, it might be sales. It’s simple really.

The first thing to do if you are a mature small business is shut down the part of the business that doesn’t perform or that you are convinced doesn’t have the potential for success. If that’s the part you enjoy you need to rethink the business model. You are going to have to disrupt or reinvent your own business.

Your business should be a manifestation of your life goals and dreams. It shouldn’t own you. The company should serve you. Elon Musk of eBay, PayPal, Tesla and SpaceX said “I don’t create companies for the sake of creating companies, but to get things done.”

You should start sales channels, create products and commence services you believe in. You will be motivated and apply energy to things you believe in.

So this is the start, 1st of December 2015, where you will hear what I think. I will upset people, inspire people and hopefully liberate a few people.

Photo by Greg Rakozy

Information Density

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Saasu is used on lots of different devices and screen sizes so we have been updating Saasu to dynamically adjust based on the browser size for your device or computer. So what does this mean:

  1. The width of the screen for some reports and lists will now increase as the available screen real estate increases.
  2. There will be less wrapping of text – you can have more lines per page in lists and reports.
  3. The grey background is gone – recycling some wasted screen real estate.
  4. Everything is to the left – freeing up space for future dashboard, reports and invoice screen flexibility.
  5. Removing duplicate navigation – links that point to the same things our menu already provides.
  6. Removal of both the Saasu and file logo from page footers – later the ability to print/display your file logo at the top of reports will be added.
  7. Footer now displays transactions used in your file (in last 365 days) – know your Saasu plan usage.
  8. Interface modernising – cleaner tab styles, less dark areas and simpler screen layouts.

We’re cleaning up and stripping out as much as possible so you can focus on getting work done in the cleanest, fastest interfaces possible. Distilling down to the essential. There will be more changes but we are rolling these out slowly to reduce the impact of interface change for our customers.

Expect the release on the 4th November 2015

7 predictions about online accounting software

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A year ago I went to couple of events for panel conversations and I was asked to consider some questions about the future of the accounting. I just found some of my notes and thought I’d briefly share them before they hit the shredder. Much of these have started forming up over the last year and I have some more recent thoughts for a follow up post.

  1. Banking systems to converge with accounting systems. Banks should pivot and become software companies that happen to sell financial products and services. It’s a common blindspot in banking. The reality of size, incumbency and culture is that this is hard to do, so software companies have a window to reinvent themselves into tech based financial service providers.
  2. Business systems will start to evolve replacing accounting, banking and customer systems. Business owners want their accounting software to shift into the sales and marketing problem space. They want this system to do banking, payments, sales, marketing and accounting. It’s the one system dream app they can’t find.
  3. Artificially intelligent systems will prompt and perform tasks. Trigger notices in-app, on-email or by SMS will highlight KPI’s and associated actionable insights.
  4. Government regulatory and reporting environment for small business will continue its unabated increase in complexity. Likewise the tax burden on small business owners to hold way above the 50 cents in the dollar point. Enjoying your tax and debt slavery? Oversized government inside a Corporatocracy is the cause of it.
  5. Search-navigation to replace menu systems in web applications. Saasu Jump is a good example of this trend toward Menu-less applications. You type what you want to find or where to want to go or what you want to do into one clean field.
  6. Payments and Point of Sale built into online accounting systems. This situation only exists because the industry of online accounting is still in it’s infancy.
  7. Slow and expensive relational databases to be replaced by newer No-SQL and proprietary array/file storage. Saasu started on this journey 2 years ago. What’s currently thought to be new in this market is already becoming old. Google stores 20+ exabytes (20,000,000,000,000,000,000 bytes) of data of which most isn’t relational database friendly.

Whatever happens it will be a fun ride.

Photo by Samuel Zeller