Ricardo Murillo: "Educating yourself financially is key to the growth of a business"
Ricardo is a Senior in Booking and Taxes at WeallthSpring, where, in addition to his duties of taking care of his clients' accounting and advising them financially, he also teaches. Five years ago, he arrived with his family from Guayaquil (Ecuador), a city known as "The Pearl of the Pacific" and "the financial engine of Ecuador." Ricardo graduated as a Public Accountant (CPA) at the University of Guayaquil and obtained a Master's Degree in Business Administration. For much of his professional life in Ecuador, he worked as an Internal Auditor. In 2018, they decided to come to the United States, where their father lives. “At the beginning, it was not easy, I worked in a supermarket, as a machine operator, among other different jobs that immigrants do”, but his professional ambition led him to continue his search until he reached WealthSpring, where he says: “I feel that It's like a family."
Although in Ecuador (his native country), he had been a professor of IFRS (International Financial Accounting Standards) classes, when he started working at WealthSpring in January 2019, he had to take on this new challenge. Felipe Wityk-Sánchez, CEO of WealthSpring, encouraged him to become a teacher and accepted the challenge. Every year, he conducts more than twenty trainings for entrepreneurs and business owners in New York through WealthSpring, NYC Business Solutions Center (Small Business Services), or the different New York chambers of commerce that request his services. It is a task that undoubtedly requires a significant commitment, but also professional responsibilities since it must be in constant training processes, which go hand in hand with great satisfaction since, as he points out: "it gives me the possibility of getting closer to the reality of more entrepreneurs from different New York counties”. Among the topics he has had to teach are QuickBox (basic and intermediate levels); accounting for business owners, and financial analysis for business owners. All these courses are intended for business owners and entrepreneurs, "They must understand the meaning of a financial balance of their company what the numbers shown there mean since that will help them make the best decisions for their company. We explain to our clients why they have profit or loss, to identify the types of expenses that their business has, how to interpret the result of their business, how to manage expenses, inventory, so that the company has profit, what the assets and liabilities of a company, etc”.
Financial education is becoming an increasingly urgent issue in the United States. Since 2021, many States are beginning to implement finance courses in the study programs of high school students. Every program is different in every state or county, but the Washington-based nonprofit group Jump$tart and the Council for Economic Education jointly publish the “National Standards for Personal Financial Literacy” that schools can use as a starting point, which helps make financial courses across different school districts more consistent. California-based Next Gen, which provides free personal finance curriculum and professional development to more than 30,000 middle and high school teachers in the United States. At the business level, the level of financial illiteracy is high and this conditions the success or failure of a business project. According to a study by Intuit, 40% of small business owners consider themselves financially illiterate. However, 81% of them manage the finances of their own business. In other words, almost a third of SME managers supervise and make financial decisions for their business without being prepared.
Teaching in New York has been a growth process for Ricardo. The satisfaction of seeing how people feel more empowered and happy when learning new tools to improve their business processes makes him happy. Still, he has also learned a lot from the experience of entrepreneurs who ask him about different business situations. "It is widespread for clients who have just arrived at WealthSpring to come in with a lot of financial shortcomings and deficiencies, at the end of the year, they don't see the money they think they should have, and they ask me where is the money?". Ricardo understands the problem; he has seen it in many New York entrepreneurs.