Checks and balances Featured

8:00pm EDT July 21, 2002

During the first two years of operating Red Maple Veterinary Clinic in East Columbus, Dr. Marian Burns juggled business and medical duties.

Her time was taxed, she didn't know what laws pertained to new business owners, and her accounting system consisted of pages in legal pads.

A friend advised her to seek help from Sue Schnitz, a certified public accountant who runs Perfect Balance, a Bexley business.

For about $200 a month, Schnitz handles Burns' bill paying, prepares materials for her tax accountant, makes year-to-year comparisons and helps Burns with payroll and business development issues.

Schnitz has found that business owners whose expertise lies in their field rather than in running a business often keep inaccurate records and don't reconcile their accounts. She nags them to get their bills to her promptly so she can manage their billing cycles, increase cash flow and update them monthly.

Burns says the gross revenues of her practice have grown more than 200 percent since she started working with Schnitz in 1991.

"The time that I do put into the business," Burns says, "is what I can do to move the practice forward."