As small business owners, we’re almost conditioned to believe that anything that cuts into the bottom line is an expense. This includes rent, utilities, marketing, vehicles, insurance, etc…the list can seem to go on forever.

On the other hand, when we think of investments, we include things like real estate or our retirement portfolio (I know, I know…some small business owners are saying…”What’s that?”). We see these as investments because they are expected to provide a return. They grow over time, producing something that far outweighs the original money spent. If you’ve been in business long enough, you begin to understand that expenses are not all alike. We certainly do not see payroll expenses in the same way we see paper for the copier. We recognize that people, in many ways, are an investment in the growth and success of our business.

In most small businesses, technology is often thought of as an expense…a means to an end. When it’s time to refresh equipment, that capital expenditure is often unwelcome. The problem often comes down to how do we weigh the impact of technology on the success of the business. This can be challenging; however, I can assure you, when systems fail and your operations come to a full stop, the impact is FULLY understood. It’s the old adage…”you only miss something when it’s gone.” Technology and the systems in place to protect it keep the wheels moving forward. When properly implemented, technology is truly an investment that produces something that far outweighs the original expense…a more successful business.

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