NICE TO MEET YOU!
I'm Crystalynn Shelton
After three years of working as a small business consultant for the Small Business Development Center, I encountered business owners that fell into two categories: business owners who were so afraid of managing the books that they either hired someone else to do their bookkeeping OR those who chose not to do the books at all. While hiring someone to do your books might sound ideal, it’s still important that you understand what they are doing. Obviously not doing the books at all is simply kicking the can down the road until that fateful day when Uncle Sam comes knocking on your door for his share of the pie.
I have made it my personal mission to prove to business owners that bookkeeping is NOT rocket science and if you invest some time you CAN do your own books or at least have an understanding of what your bookkeeper is doing. I will teach you how to get your books in order by providing you with quality training, tools, and a plan to keep your books up-to-date throughout the year so that tax time is a breeze!
I was introduced to the “bean counter” life as a sophomore in high school. One of my electives was a recording-keeping course (yes, this was the term used back in the ’80s before it was refined to “bookkeeping”). The gentleman who taught the class was a CPA (Certified Public Accountant) and he had his own tax and accounting firm. He shared his experiences in the field and taught us the nuts and bolts of good record keeping. By the end of that class, I had decided I was going to major in accounting, become a CPA and open up my own practice one day! Believe it or not, I stayed on that path.
I graduated from the University of Texas at Arlington with a bachelor’s degree in accounting. Four years after graduation, I passed the CPA exam. Unfortunately working in Corporate America in the field of accounting was a grueling experience. For the first 10 years of my career, I worked on average 6-7 days per week - 60 plus hours per week. While it was a GRIND, I was blessed to work for Fortune 500 companies such as Texaco, Paramount Pictures, and Sylvan Learning Center. During my 7th year in Corporate, I was tasked with training my team on a new accounting software (SAP).
As the accounting manager, I was on the system conversion team and was given the choice of having a consultant train my team or doing it myself (in addition to my other responsibilities). Being the Type A personality that I am, I took on the challenge and it was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made! I absolutely enjoyed every aspect of training. From creating the training materials to delivering the training to my team. After that experience, I vowed to transition to a career that would allow me to combine my love of numbers with training.
I did some research and at the time QuickBooks was the #1 software used by small to medium-sized businesses. I signed up for their ProAdvisor program and became certified in QuickBooks in 2007. I’ve maintained my certification for the last 15 years. In 2009, I became an Adjunct Instructor at UCLA and I’ve taught bookkeeping and QuickBooks courses every quarter for the last 13 years. In 2010, I started my consulting business part-time while still working in Corporate (meeting with clients during the week after 5 pm and on the weekends). While my business has evolved over the years, one thing has never changed - my love for teaching business owners how to take control of their finances.
"Crystalynn has been a great asset to helping me learn and navigate through quickbooks online and setting up my small business needs. It was a wonderful experience working with her and she is easy to work with."
"Crystalynn made learning QuickBooks a walk in the park! Her guidance, along with assignments assigned were both informative as well as enjoyable. I had no experience at all with Quickbooks before taking her course, but now I can confidently navigate the program without any issues. Thank you!"
"I took Quickbooks with Professor Shelton and I was blown away with the way she teaches the course. She is extremely informative and from that I can tell that she wants her students to succeed."
Why I Do It
As a small business owner, I understand the tremendous pressure and work that goes into building a business from the ground up. Like all business owners, I have worn all of the hats (assistant, bookkeeper, customer service representative, marketing assistant, social media manager, etc;).
Was I comfortable wearing all of these hats? NO! I would rather reconcile bank accounts all day long than create a social media post or a marketing plan! However, I had no choice in the beginning because I could not afford to hire people to do all of the things I did not want to do. (However, when I could afford to, I hired that marketing assistant and social media manager asap..lol!)
The point is that I don’t want business owners to give in to the FEAR that they are not capable of doing their bookkeeping or of understanding what their bookkeeper is doing. That is just not true! If you have not heard this saying, FEAR stands for: False Evidence Appearing Real. The BEST part about what I do is to see the transformation of a business owner who didn’t think he/she could do it and after a few coaching sessions, they begin to BELIEVE. That’s why I do it!