Before investing time, effort and money into launching a new business, you need to know whether it's financially viable. Creating a customized financial model is a key element of effective business planning. It helps you to identify strengths and weakness in your business, anticipate problems that may affect your cash flow, make informed business decisions, and plan for the future. And a solid financial model is also a pre-requisite if you're looking to raise funding. Here, Kate L. Harrison shares some top tips to help first-time entrepreneurs get to grips with financial modelling.