Leonardo Da Vinci's math teacher, Luca Pacioli, was a fifteenth century monk who wrote, among other things, the first accounting textbook: Summa de Arithmetica, Geometria, Proportioni et Proportionalita.
His approach in writing the book was empirical. In other words, it was not theoretical or inductive; it was practical and deductive. He observed the business practices of contemporary, local merchants, wrote down what he saw, and from these practices, he deduced the theory for the book. From this book we get the language of debits, credits, journals, and ledgers that we still use today in modern accounting software like QuickBooks.
At Making End$ Meet, our attitude about accounting is the same as his. We emphasize practice over theory, and that theory is only useful insofar as it is firmly grounded in practice. We respect business owners' experience, and honor the fact that accounting records belong to them, not to their bookkeepers or accountants. For after all, the first accounting systems, the ones Pacioli saw and that inspired his book, were designed and used not by hirelings or specialists, but by business owners themselves.
In our view, since Pacioli's time accounting has become specialized to the point of dysfunction. Specialties have grown up around it to the extent that it's common for bookkeepers, accountants, lenders and investors to have a better understanding of a business' financial well-being than the owner has, resulting in a tail-wagging-the-dog fiasco.
Our mission, therefore, is to return accounting to its rightful owners, to reunite them with the records that, if properly understood, can help them thrive and succeed by making sound, wise, and fully informed economic decisions.
This is not to suggest that there is no place for bookkeepers and accountants. Of course there is. But our governing principle is that if you are going to delegate, know what you're delegating; have clear expectations of your help; and keep the ownership that is rightfully yours.
For help owning your accounting, please contact us.
When bookkeeping is too slow . . . try the "How We Did" app!
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