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How to Make Business Decisions Using Financial Statements 

A lot of the value of making a decision comes in deciding what to do next. Being a business owner means you need to look at your numbers and make sure you're making good decisions for your company and yourself. Learn how to use financial statements to solve business problems and make informed business decisions!
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Part 1

Introduction of Financial Statements

Solving the right problem in the company starts with understanding the financial performance, correctly identifying tell tales, and interpreting the data you have collated. After that, it is a multi-step process involving understanding, calculating, and analysing within the financial statement.

Financial Statements accurately reflect the business performance and financial position of the company. Hence, it's essential to help all the company stakeholders evaluate and make suitable financial decisions by comparing its performance. Analysing and reporting financial statements can offer a level of insight that helps businesses remain compliant while streamlining their income or expenditure-centric initiatives across the board.

Understanding your Tools

Before even attempting to prepare or analyse your organisation's financial statements, you will first learn to identify the different purposes of each financial statement to utilise them better. We will do so by going through the uses and limitations of each statement.

Generating the Statements

To start preparing the financial statements, you will need to understand the layout of the financial statements. We will go through the key elements that make up each statement and the calculations involved when preparing the statements.

Analysing Financial Data

After understanding preparing financial statements, you'll also learn how to avoid common mistakes. Subsequently, you'll be able to learn how to interpret analysis drawn from the statements using financial ratios. By the end of this course, you'll have the skills and confidence to correctly prepare and interpret financial statements for your organisation.

Part 2

Financial Statement Analysis Framework

"In a perfect world, investors, board members, and executives would have full confidence in companies' financial statements… Unfortunately, that's not what happens in the real world, for several reasons." – Where Financial Reporting Still Falls Short, Harvard Business Review Article.

The Financial Statements Analysis Framework has six processes that the analyst will assess the financial statements, drawing insights to form recommendations and conclusions. Of course, financial reports must be as accurate as possible. By adopting the right analytical tools, you can perform adequate and accurate financial statements analysis.

At the same time, financial reporting is as important as analysis. It gives existing and future stakeholders an accurate depiction of its finances and performances and provides insights and forecasts into its future.

Accurate financial analysis and reporting would offer in-depth and high-level insights for companies to make their business decisions confidently and effectively. Companies will accelerate their growth or expand their business strategy with the right approach.

Collecting your Data

Before analysing data, the first step is to understand why you're collecting the data and how to go about collecting it. You will learn the different steps that make up the data collection process.

Understanding your Data

To start analysing your data after collecting it, you will learn the different types of analytical tools recommended for your analysis. Subsequently, you would learn to apply these analytical tools to your data through a case study that demonstrates it.

Using your Data

After collecting and analysing your data, you will learn to make sense of your data and form conclusions based on your insights. You will also learn how to evaluate your recommendations and plan for the following steps to execute your recommendations.

Part 3

Financials Affecting Business Decisions

An average adult makes more than 35,000 decisions per day. For business owners, the number is possibly much higher. Business owners play a role in making decisions for their company, regardless of its importance. Hence, one needs to understand the types of business decisions to assess whether the decision is appropriate for its existing growth stage.

Financial analysis is one method that provides the most insights to a business owner regarding decision-making processes because financials are important for the business and stakeholders. Thus, businesses must adopt the right tools to analyse and forecast their financials to measure profitability and sustainability.

In addition to measuring profitability, financial insights can also highlight the outlook of the company's financial situation, allowing business owners to identify signs of financial distress and risks if any. Warren Buffett once said, "Risk comes from not knowing what you're doing." Therefore, financial risk assessment is an essential element for businesses to become successful. By adopting a proper risk assessment framework, companies analyse potential risks early and take suitable approaches to avoid losses.

With the right understanding and projection of the company's financials, business owners will then make more informed business decisions.

Understanding Business Growth

You will learn to identify and understand the different stages of business growth and the types of business decisions made in each stage.

Analysing and Forecasting your Financials

To further analyse and forecast your financial data, you will learn the different types of forecasting methods. Subsequently, you will learn to identify the warning signs from your financial analysis and the right time to finance your business.

Identifying Financial Risks

You will learn to conduct a risk assessment on your business financials, using a step-by-step guide on identifying, analysing, and treating the risk.

Course Outline

Meet the Instructor

Shelby Tee

Shelby Tee is the Managing Partner of BlackStorm Consulting. Shelby is always keen on exploring new things, and nothing excites her more than a new challenge. Her expertise lies in corporate and product marketing, project management, business operations and crisis management.

Being in the cut-throat world of retail marketing and project management for nine years has allowed Shelby to quickly identify clients' needs and deliver the best for them. In addition, her experience in a wide variety of industries has led her to adapt to any situation and environment.