Climbing Mount Everest was once an undertaking reserved only for professional climbers in peak condition. Over the decades, though, this has changed. Climbing has become increasingly commercialised, and with that the chance to make it up the world’s highest peak has become a possibility for amateurs. Since the early nineties, several Everest-based commercial climbing companies have been founded. They offer amateur climbers the chance to fulfill their dreams of summiting a mountain that was once completely off-limits. But these climbers join the expedition on a strict condition. They must obey every single instruction of their expedition leaders as law. In return, expedition leaders literally become a lifeline to these climbers. Their familiarity with the route, the dangers of the climb and limits of the human body at such an altitude are ultimately what lead the climbers to safety.
In the same way, your Johannesburg-based company might be thinking about branching out to the city that houses our local iconic mountain: Cape Town. As you contemplate the move, you’re no doubt thinking about staffing concerns. Should you find a local branch manager, or should you ask someone you know from Johannesburg if they’d be willing to relocate? While we can’t give a definitive recommendation about each of the positions you’ll be contemplating, we can suggest that it might be a good idea to hire a Cape Town financial manager. In our experience, outsourcing your finance to someone local could act as a lifeline to your business in the same way as an expedition leader plays a vital role to a climber. Here are some reasons why:
A local knows the lay of the land
Outsourcing your finance to a Cape Town financial manager will mean that you have a local putting your systems in place. If you think that’s unnecessary, think again. Several business owners we’ve chatted to have said that starting up a business in Johannesburg versus Cape Town is almost like starting up a business in a new country. Your Cape Town financial manager has relationships with local financiers, knows people in the relevant local government departments and knows how local logistics will impact your business.
Your Cape Town financial manager knows the competition
The recently-released movie Everest tells the true story about disaster that struck on top of the mountain in 1996. Too many commercial climbing companies were on the mountain during climbing season that year. None of the companies had anticipated this level of competition. As a result, there were hours-long delays on several of the passes as “traffic jams” occurred. In the end, climbers were still atop the mountain when the weather turned bad, and several lives were lost.
Similarly, one of the most daunting aspects of starting up in a new location is not knowing exactly who you are up against. A Cape Town financial manager knows the local market and the players in it. They can help you situate your business in such a way that hones in your strengths in relation to your local competitors.
A Cape Town financial manager knows how to cater to local tastes and preferences
Those who climb Everest must adhere to the customs of the area as they do so. This includes visiting a local monastery before their ascent and receiving a ‘safe journey’ blessing from a Nepalese monk. Failure to do so would constitute a great offense. Likewise, building the strategy for your local branch is so much more powerful when it takes into account local happenings. Your company could run promotions around local events or anticipate sales spikes (or dips) around local holidays.
Outsourcing your finance to a Cape Town financial manager will allow your company to benefit from local knowledge and insight, while still retaining the integrity of your own corporate culture. Contact The Finance Team to find out more about getting a suitable professional onboard for the period of time that you need them.