How to Win Like Toronto Raptors

How to Win Like Toronto Raptors

Raptors won the NBA World Championship in 2019. I can finally sleep well and go back to my normal routine. Watching the NBA with bated breath is something all the fans do, I think the people who placed a bet on FanDuel or used some other kind of Online sports betting platform would have been gripping their seats.

Watching the NBA finals at 9pm was tough for me.  9pm is usually the time that I go to bed, relax and wind down to fall asleep. ?

But I have no complains.  Raptors won and that’s all that matters! 

Erwin, being a Raptors’ fan from Day 1, kept repeating this line “started from the bottom now we’re here”… a song by Drake released in 2013. 

Who would have known 2019 is the year?!

In 2018, we got swept by Lebron James and his Cleveland Cavaliers, again!

Our General Manager Masai Ujiri fired the coach, Dwayne Casey, who won Coach of the Year.

He also traded “Mr. Toronto”, arguably the most loyal Toronto Raptors, DeMar DeRozan, in exchange for Kawhi Leonard, a player that only played maybe ten games at the time.

As a business owner myself, I admired Masai Ujiri’s guts to take these steps.  DeMar DeRozan and Dwayne Casey are what I called Raptors “comfort zone”.

They’re good player and good coach, but they’re just not great. 

They laid out the foundation, but they couldn’t take the Raptors to the next level.

Masai opted out of staying in the comfort zone, took a huge risk (could be a career ending type of risk), and got us to the next level.

I love Kawhi Leonard (#HeStays), but Masai Ujiri, from an entrepreneur perspective, is the true MVP.

People often look at a licensed Chartered Accountant and thought, “hey, you’re the accountant, you are the expert in numbers, you must have everything under control.”

The truth is, being an entrepreneur is very different from the training we got from school and any of my previous jobs.

I graduated from University of Waterloo with Master Degree in Accounting and a Bachelor Degree in Mathematics/Chartered Accountancy.  If you talk to any parents who have high school kids today, you probably know that it is one of the top ranked accounting programs.

Turns out, post-secondary education and real work experience are very different. 

None of the courses I took taught us about cash flow management, marketing and building a business.  None of the accounting education I got, taught me how to organize my paperwork, setup a bookkeeping system, and used various apps to improve my business.

When I ventured out on my own, my university education seemed so irrelevant.  I mean, don’t get me wrong.  It got me the technical skills that I needed but beyond that, it was all on me to pick up the slack.

When I started from the bottom, making less than when I was working as a co-op student, I didn’t make enough to pay for the cost of childcare while I worked on my business.  

I’m extremely grateful that the business was growing.  I did marketing, met with prospects, I wrote blog post, I spoke at different events.  I also needed to prepare files (later on review files), manage people, and setup my internal system.  By the way, I was also the one depositing cheques and email money transfer.  24 hours a day didn’t seem to be enough. 

Finally after a few years, my business grew to the point that afford me to make enough to take care of myself and a portion of the household expenses, then I realized I already spent the money that belonged to CRA. 

So, when I first attended the Rock Star Entrepreneur Summit, it was an eye opener for me. 

When I finally got a chance to do a presentation last week at this annual Summit about cash flow management, accounting/bookkeeping system and tax structure for 3 different stages of entrepreneurship, I was so excited to share everything I’ve learned from my journey.

From nearly broke, to making enough to pay for my own expenses and my share of household expenses, and the next level. 

Apps that we used, the system I used to manage my cash flow and set aside money for CRA, how I paid myself first before paying everything else, etc.

I’m not perfect by any means.  I’m still learning and growing and still trying to improve my business.

It took Raptors over 20 years to get a Championship.  It took me a few years to get a handle of my business. 

We all started from the bottom. 

Until next time, happy Canadian Real Estate Investing.

Cherry Chan, CPA, CA

Your Real Estate Accountant

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Hello Cherry,
You are referring to “apps” that you used / using in your business. Can you name a few? Thank you

Apps I use including the following:
1. Asana
2. Aero
3. Plooto
4. Hubdoc
5. QBO
6. WagePoint
7. PI
8. Wunderlist

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