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Scott Carrothers

I’ve co-owned a health food store, worked as a red seal chef, started grew and sold a mustard manufacturing business, taught culinary management and accounting at Fanshawe College for 5 years, worked as the VP Finance for a mid-size restaurant group for another 5 years and then started a side project doing bookkeeping for restaurants. That has now grown into a full time job and my plans are to scale the firm and build a business that will be turnkey to sell when I’m ready to retire.   Visit Scott at  https://foolproofbookkeeping.com/

The Most Unlikely Path to a Bookkeeping Firm, Scott Carrothers

Tell us a little something about your business...

Foolproof Bookkeeping is a niche firm catering to restaurants across Canada. We specialize in offering full cycle bookkeeping (meaning that, once the client is fully onboarded into our system, all they really have to do is use an app to send us paperwork and then click the zoom link when it’s time to review their statements), as well as fractional CFO services around forecasting and cash flow management. We are absolute experts in the restaurant industry and know many of the suppliers, the lingo, the challenges and the opportunities. Because we focus on restaurants we see trends and share those with our clients. We bring a unique perspective on restaurant finances and present the information in ways that are meaningful to the people who hire us. More than anything, we want our clients to be successful and happy restaurateurs. And we know that having clear, accurate and timely numbers is the best way to help them evaluate the effectiveness of their strategies.

When was your lightbulb moment?

My lightbulb is more like a dimmer switch. I got into cooking while I was in high school and later, while struggling to find work in my early twenties, I decided to get my red seal and become a chef. But I was always more interested in the numbers side of a kitchen than I was in being a wildly experimental chef. After years of leading kitchen teams, managing the training department for a national restaurant franchise, building and selling a food manufacturing business, teaching culinary management and accounting at the College level, and consulting on and running the operations departments for restaurant groups it dawned on me that I was no longer a chef. And when the circumstances of a high level job lead me to enroll in the Accounting program at McMaster my next journey began. I didn’t know during that first course that I would one day start this business. But I did know before I finished my last course. The only question was when.

What are your three words of advice?

Read – If you want to be a leader in your industry then you need to be an expert. And you will need to maintain your expertise.

Systematize – Each client requires some level of customization. But you can save yourself a ton of dead-air time by having systems in place that only need tweaking rather than re-creation with each new client.

Listen – The best way to figure out where to focus your energy is to listen to the problems people are having. And when you hear about a problem that many people have, and that you know how to solve, then you’ve found a potential niche.

Three words of advice...

Read, Listen and Systematize

I’ve co-owned a health food store, worked as a red seal chef, started grew and sold a mustard manufacturing business, taught culinary management and accounting at Fanshawe College for 5 years, worked as the VP Finance for a mid-size restaurant group for another 5 years and then started a side project doing bookkeeping for restaurants. That has now grown into a full time job and my plans are to scale the firm and build a business that will be turnkey to sell when I’m ready to retire.   Visit Scott at  https://foolproofbookkeeping.com/

“May your legacy create a footprint of success for the next person who steps into your shoes”

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