Small Business Planning – You’re Kidding, Right?

Would you play poker if they kept changing the rules in the middle of the game? Yet you, as a small business owner, are expected to plan ahead when the rules keep changing and you need a government interpreter just to figure out what the hell is going on.

What are your tax rates going to be on income, capital gains, or dividends in two months? No one knows. Hell, Congress not only left before addressing next years mammoth tax hikes, they never came up with their own budget for the government. That’s their job!

How is Obamacare going to affect your business? No one has actually read the bill and the regulations are still being written. But everyone knows it’s going to be bad for business – like the new 1099 requirement, which doesn’t even concern health care.

How about payroll? According to,

For many business owners this year, the budgeting process may grind to a halt once they hit the payroll line item.

Aside from pervasive concerns over the pace of economic growth, there’s the rising cost of health care, new health care rules and regulations, and a tax environment that’s anything but certain. Even the small business incentives recently legislated seem to many to be too little, too late.

Let’s just take a quick look at small business health care incentives. First, it depends on the number of employees and their average salary. Then, it only lasts for two years! Then, you’re stuck with the full price. How’s that going to affect your hiring decisions?

Most small business owners I know are just “hunkering down”, trying to weather the storm. But it’s going to last for years and you have to make decisions about your business’s future.

So where do you turn? If you have a good accountant you may be able to get some advice on the government’s maelstrom of regulations.

One CEO I saw on one of the financial channels said that their employees who could interpret all of the new regulations were being snapped up by other companies at salaries starting at over $300K a year.

One good resource I often use is (the National Federation of Independent Business). It has a ton of free content and memberships are available at $180/year.

My only other advice is to vote the idiots out tomorrow (Nov 2). Down here in Florida we have an invasive plant called kudzu – it takes over everything and destroys the natural ecology, just like the federal government is trying to do with the economy. It’s time to break out the herbicide.