Sample financial statements are difficult to portray, because rarely do any two businesses have the same exact format for their statements—or at least they shouldn't if they are being used properly as management tools.
Financial Statements for big corporations can reach book-size proportions—but that is not our interest here…we want to learn what actual financial statements might look like for the newer entrepreneur with a startup business.
So, I created a simple set of financial statements for a fictitious company, ABC Manufacturing, Inc. Obviously, this is an over-simplified set of financial statements for a small company.
The two documents I created are the two most important accounting documents in your business. They are a sample Balance Sheet, and a sample Profit and Loss (P&L) Statement for our small fictitious manufacturing company.
If you want to view sample financial statements while reading more about what they are and how to use them, I suggest you take a look at my book Small Business Financial Statements: What They Are, How to Understand Them, and How to Use Them. For more information—click here.
If your business is even smaller (maybe with no employees), you can likely prepare an even simpler set of financial statements.
The point is: that you will, at some point, require a set of financial statements—and, in my opinion, you should be using them for managing your own business all along.
You can access a sample Balance Sheet and Profit and Loss (P&L) statement below:
You may notice that I did not create a Cash Flow Statement (or whatever your accountant chooses to call it), because frankly, I found this document to not be a very good management tool for a small startup business. It is much more valuable as your business grows and your Balance Sheet becomes more robust.
When you are just starting a new business there are much better ways to monitor and control your cash.
Also, these sample financials should be used alongside the other reports in this section as you read them.
It is highly advisable that you read, or review, the previous report, "Understanding Financial Statements." The sample documents in that report are the same as the sample financial statements in this report.
When you are comfortable with understanding the construction of financial statements, the next logical step is to learn how to "analyze" them.