Luca PacioliThe Importance of Being Right

Bookkeeping is the bread and butter of accounting. Taxes deal with the totality of your accounting system on one day of the year (usually December 31st). Bookkeeping deals with the other 364 days of the year.

In the 15th century a mathematical genius named Luca Pacioli codified the modern system of accounting now in use worldwide. Pacioli is the central figure in the famous portrait shown here. You can thank him for the clarity, simplicity and power of accounting to help businesses everywhere succeed.

Filing taxes keeps the IRS off your back while bookkeeping helps you run your business.

Are you making money or losing money? Is a segment of your business helping or hurting? How do you know? Bookkeeping answers these and many other crucial questions.

Good bookkeeping is as ill-suited for people who find perfection boring as it is for those who would spend an entire weekend to find a penny error in their books. Good bookkeeping requires good judgment.


Bookkeeping with a Human Face

The heart of all bookkeeping is cash accounting. Every physical dollar that flows into your business and every dollar that flows out must be accounted for. This requires good bank reconciliations. And it may require someone who gets in your face, asks inconvenient questions and insists on a good answer. The cumulative effect of good answers adds up to good bookkeeping, good accounting reports and actionable information that help you make good decisions about your business. You need this to succeed. You should insist upon it. This is the kind of bookkeeping service I offer.

I’ve seen success and know what it looks like. I’ve seen failure too and know what it looks like. As a business owner you are the heart and conscience of your business. You are its inspiration and reason for existing. Good accounting helps you see how your business is performing. Without good accounting you are blind and will fail sooner or later.

I began my accounting career as a humble bookkeeper. While I studied accounting textbooks inspired by Luca Pacioli and written by his successors and admirers, I practiced the craft of recording business activity. I learned accounting from the ground up and in the real world.

My first bookkeeping job was in a bakery. I tallied up sales orders, cranked out customer billing statements, prepared monthly bank reconciliations, and learned, lived, recorded and summarized the life of this small family business which provided a livelihood for twelve people. I also got to enjoy free perks like fresh Danish, croissants, and bread hot out of the oven. I worked alongside professional bakers who practiced their own respectable trade, one I admired and benefitted from.


Accounting is a story, told in numbers and facts, which presents in a universal format the well-being of a business, the trials and tribulations of money, where it came from and why, where it went and for what reason, what is left of it now and what may yet be left of it in the near future. No business anywhere dares to ignore this story; no business anywhere succeeds unless this story is well and fully understood; many businesses fail despite their fullest and deepest understanding.


There is no substitute whatsoever for good bookkeeping. It is the foundation of every prosperous business. It is the salvation of every business on the brink of failure and searching for success. It is the concluding epitaph of every failed business, read by others as a lesson and warning of what not to do.

Those who scorn good bookkeeping are deluded, those who don’t listen to its conclusions are deaf, and those who don’t learn its lessons are foolish. No one ever can replace the value of this story, which explains in clear and factual terms what a business is doing, where its money is going, why it succeeds or fails, and how the business can be improved.

Good bookkeeping is vital to the success of every business. It is above politics and beyond mere opinion; it outlasts temporary enthusiasms and momentary passions. Bookkeeping is the enduring language of business. Its conclusions are final and beyond all dispute. The recommendations that emerge from it may be harsh or difficult but carry the weight and power of truth.

It should be clear at this point how I feel and what I think about bookkeeping. I take it seriously. You should fear those who treat it as a menial chore, an interruption of more valuable pursuits, or a low-value service more endured than passionately pursued. Similarly, you should fear impersonal doctors who refuse to deal hands-on with their patients, and who delegate vital tasks to underlings.

I believe in bookkeeping. You should too.



George Adams
Certified Public Accountant Master of Business Administration
Tel: (207) 989-2700 E-Mail:
450 South Main Street: The HQ of IQ
Brewer, Maine 04412-2339

©2015 Copyright George Adams CPA MBA. All Rights Reserved.


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