About Alissa Bryden

Entrepreneur, Accountant and Business Coach.
Thanks for reading! To connect you can email me alissa@vhaccounting.ca or follow me on LinkedIn.

How to Check Your Published Reports in Xero

By | April 12th, 2017|Xero|

As part of our bookkeeping packages, Virtual Heights Accounting will "publish" your monthly, quarterly or yearly reports in Xero for your viewing. This 2 min video shows clients how to access these reports from login to the Dashboard to viewing and downloading the reports (if desired). If you do not know your Xero login, you can contact info@vhaccounting.ca or your Virtual Heights Accounting contact. We will ensure you are set up. If you have forgotten your password, you can also click "Forgot Your Password?" at login to initiate the reset process. https://youtu.be/oziyjpZhUK8   Virtual Heights Accounting is a CPA and business coaching [...]

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The Best Strategy – Turning Passion into Profit

By | March 28th, 2017|Uncategorized|

Many small business owners get involved in the day to day operations of their business and fail to step back and consider their strategy. This can lead to additional stress, overwork and reduced profits. Strategy is the key to success in both “big” and “small” business. At some point you of course have to jump in and "do" but make sure you step back to ensure that you are "doing" the right things for you and your business. What is Strategy? Michael Porter, a Harvard business professor, and a reputed “Strategist”, often explains strategy as “how the organization is going to [...]

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Top 5 Reasons to Have a Business Plan

By | March 20th, 2017|Business Coaching|

A business plan is a written document that explains what the business is, how it operates, what it’s goals are and how it plans to achieve those goals. Many think that only those seeking financing need a business plan. They consider the business plan a necessity for the bank – that’s it. They could not be more wrong and here are five reasons why. 1)     Benchmarking – A good business plan identifies what are called Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) for the business. A business can then use these KPI’s to measure its success moving forward. This can help when you are looking at specific [...]

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What is a business coach?

By | March 9th, 2017|Uncategorized|

What is a business coach and why do I need one? When you start a business you hear a lot of recommendations to get a business coach. I have run into a lot of independent business coaches in my years as an Accountant. Many business owners do not really know what they do and thus I have decided to explain a little bit about business coaching (at least how I see and do it). As a business coach, I help business owners take their ideas and put them into practice. We define steps they can take and ways to measure those steps. I also [...]

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Giving Back

By | February 22nd, 2017|Uncategorized|

We are all busy. Then we see Not-for-Profits and groups that need help. Then the guilt comes as their never seems to be enough time. This week I was cruising the book fair at my daughter’s school with her one evening and saw two moms manning the checkout as volunteers for the Parent Advisory Committee. Two busy moms doing their part. Insert guilt here – and guilty confession: I have not yet volunteered for PAC.   A few days later, I had a canvasser come to the door. A fellow mom friend who was canvassing for the Heart and Stroke Foundation. [...]

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What can I deduct for meals?

By | February 16th, 2017|Uncategorized|

Throughout the year, I get a lot of questions around what can be deducted when it comes to meals for tax purposes. However, as we enter personal tax season I get these questions almost daily! I have decided to write a blog that answers some common questions. For further explanations, see Canada Revenue Agency website as they have some great resources. I travel for work - can I deduct meals? If you travel for work and are self employed you can deduct meals in the business (whether in a corporation or on your personal tax return for sole proprietors). However, the [...]

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Making Billable Expenses Work for You Using Xero

By | January 31st, 2017|Uncategorized|

Billable expenses are when you pay for services or products (expenses) that you then invoice to your customers. Using billable expenses as part of your accounting and invoicing software can help you ensure you don’t miss out on getting reimbursed for these costs. This discussion will be based on using Xero to track this but many other accounting software also have this option. This can be great for a variety of businesses. I have seen it work wonders for contractors but I have also seen it in professional service businesses. The bottom line is if you have a contract or agreement [...]

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Blog 10 Let’s get Personal – on Taxes!

By | January 12th, 2017|Uncategorized|

Tax Time Tips Normally, my blogs are dedicated to small business owners everywhere. As my first blog post of 2017, I wanted to get a little more personal – on taxes! Small business owners whether they are incorporated or operate as a sole proprietor need to think about personal taxes too. As we creep closer to the dreaded tax season, I wanted to provide a quick summary on some changes you will see when filing your personal tax returns for 2016. Child Fitness Tax Credit / Child Arts Credit The Liberal budget of March 2016 announced that these credits will be [...]

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Best Practices of Cash Controls in a Small Business

By | November 29th, 2016|Uncategorized|

Cash controls are the controls used in a business to protect a business from cash theft and mismanagement. In a previous blog (Fraud in Small Business), I discussed how a front desk / bookkeeper stole cash from the business. Ultimately, the reason this occurred was a lack of cash controls. Each business is different and each should assess their own cash controls. However, I wanted to provide a quick guide on cash controls that could assist a business owner in looking at their own processes. Cash Controls Separation of Duties This is a big one but is also the hardest one when [...]

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