Why Cameron was right about accountants

By | 2012-05-09T09:24:01+00:00 May 9th, 2012|Career development|

I returned from a few days away to see a storm brewing about something disparaging that David Cameron has said about accountants. The offending headline in the Daily Telegraph on 7 May was: "We're not just a bunch of accountants". This was an extract from an article attributed to David Cameron in the paper. He said

6 key factors that can determine your success

By | 2012-01-06T10:45:22+00:00 January 6th, 2012|Career development, Mentoring, Reputation, STANDING OUT|

I recently watched an old video clip of the professional services firm guru, David Maister, in which he highlights the six most scarce resources in most professional service firms: Energy Excitement Enthusiasm Determination Passion Ambition David also points out that his research has proved that the top achieving firms are those that energise, excite and enthuse

Event tip: Where are you from?

By | 2011-01-27T09:53:53+00:00 January 27th, 2011|Career development|

I was one of the hosts at a recent business event and had invited a number of guests. As is the norm all received name badges that also had their company name on them. Well, almost. Those guests who had a single permanent role with one firm or company had that business name beneath their

4 tips for job hunters

By | 2010-12-20T10:51:32+00:00 December 20th, 2010|Career development|

1 - Register on LinkedIn and complete your profile so that you are attractive to prospective recruiters and anyone looking there for someone like you. Here's a link to a short series of blogs I wrote recently on the value of LinkedIn. Once registered you can then use LinkedIn to connect with past colleagues and

Are you assertive or aggressive?

By | 2010-07-18T10:40:50+00:00 July 18th, 2010|Career development|

I was recently asked my views on the benefits of being assertive rather than aggressive in getting a tax job and in your tax career.  Here's what I said as is published in Taxation 2 magazine: While we are used to seeing aggressive characters getting their way on the screen and maybe even in the

Finding, Minding, Binding, Grinding

By | 2010-04-28T09:26:00+00:00 April 28th, 2010|Career development|

It's been a while since I referenced the key roles we tend to adopt in our firms. There are four essential such roles. Most firms need partners and team members with skills in each of these 4 areas. Finders - who go out and find the new work Minders - who look after the relationship

What does CPD really mean?

By | 2010-01-06T13:50:35+00:00 January 6th, 2010|Career development|

Having just shared my views re CPD over on AccountingWeb I offer below an adapted summary and a few additional ideas and tips. CPD of course stands for Continuing PROFESSIONAL Development. To some (older?) people this is synonymous with attending courses. It's what we always did. Historically I recall my obligation to the ICAEW was to

Where smaller firms of accountants are going wrong

By | 2009-07-23T09:20:59+00:00 July 23rd, 2009|Career development, Servicing clients|

Accountancy Age has published a profile piece on Peter Hargreaves (Chartered Accountant and founder of Hargreaves Lansdown).  In it he is quite scathing about certain elements of the profession. None more so than the smaller practitioner: "They’re not doing a good enough job for clients, hence they can’t charge much for the work. A self-defeating

3 time management tips

By | 2009-07-15T08:43:46+00:00 July 15th, 2009|Career development, Uncategorized|

I was asked for these when contributing to a business survey recently. 1 - Set up rules in your email management system to reduce the time absorbed by incoming emails. 2 - Book time in your diary for regular activities such as bookkeeping, invoicing, personal development, replying to emails etc. If client work has to

Two top interview tips

By | 2009-07-02T19:52:33+00:00 July 2nd, 2009|Career development|

Having been asked to contribute some tips to a careers magazine I thought I'd replicate them on this blog too. I have always remembered the first time that someone I was interviewing asked if they could make notes. Of course my reply was 'yes'.  Indeed I was impressed that they were evidently prepared, had asked

A twitter case study and intro for professional advisers

By | 2009-04-28T10:12:39+00:00 April 28th, 2009|Career development, Mark's other sites, Social Media|

Twitter seems a bizarre concept. In theory you post brief messages (up to 140 characters at a time) about what you’re doing and these are seen by your ‘followers’. Equally you can read what other people who you’re following say they’re doing. In practice ‘tweets’ are far more varied than some of the media would

If in doubt – imagine you’re advising a loved one

By | 2008-11-18T10:31:40+00:00 November 18th, 2008|Career development, Professional Negligence, Tax related|

One of the pressures that all ambitious accountants endure is the need to advise on issues that do not arise every day. The more experience you have the more confidence you gain to know whether or not you have enough knowledge to give the advice without double checking it's right. Double checking might simply involve

Now is the time to invest in your staff

By | 2008-10-02T07:41:26+00:00 October 2nd, 2008|Career development|

I often receive calls from recruiters asking me if I know of anyone who might suit this vacancy or that opportunity.  In recent weeks I've been telling them that I'm aware of far more vacancies than potential candidates.  Few people are looking to move from one firm to another in the current economic climate. In

WikiJob – for ambitious accountants

By | 2008-09-05T07:41:28+00:00 September 5th, 2008|Career development|

I came across an intriguing website recently that is worth referencing on this blog. It will be of interest to ambitious accountants seeking a new job or who work in one of the larger firms.  One of the guys behind  WikiJob tells me that: We challenge large accountancy employers by offering their employees and prospective