Why do you let clients bully you?

By |2017-02-09T09:29:04+00:00February 9th, 2017|Accountants, Servicing clients|

Each February I hear tales of woe from accountants who have worked late into the night during the weeks leading up to the tax return filing deadline. Many are resigned to this and some even seem to enjoy the adrenaline rush. Most though resent the late hours and the pressure they feel as the deadline

Sole practitioners – what can you do when your clients are too tough on you?

By |2018-03-14T22:44:02+00:00October 19th, 2016|Accountants, Servicing clients, sole practitioners|

Many an otherwise savvy sole practitioner tells me about similar problems with their client base. "They won't pay higher fees, they don't want additional services and they leave everything to the last minute" If you have clients like this, you're not alone. Often it's a direct consequence of how desperate you were to take on

Is it better to have lots of small clients or a smaller number of larger clients?

By |2015-09-29T15:11:37+00:00September 29th, 2015|Accountants, Pricing, Servicing clients|

The question I was recently asked by an accountant was actually: “Is it better to have 500 small clients paying me £500 pa or 50 larger clients paying £5,000 pa?” A little background from the accountant concerned: “The reason behind this question is that I have been running my practise for many years looking after

Why I sacked a large firm of accountants

By |2015-07-21T10:18:37+00:00July 21st, 2015|Accountants, Servicing clients|

The purpose of sharing what follows is the lessons that I hope become apparent. I have no desire to embarrass anyone so I am not identifying the client, the firm or the partner concerned. That's not the point. Background Last year I took over responsibility, on a voluntary basis, for the finances of a members'

Resolving issues with problem clients

By |2018-06-09T19:26:01+00:00June 2nd, 2015|Accountants, Productivity, Servicing clients|

This was the main topic for discussion at last month’s meeting of The Inner Circle for Accountants. Once again Members of The Inner Circle benefited from the willingness they all had to share their experiences and insights during our round table discussion. In accordance with one of our key membership principles everyone agreed to

10 shocking mistakes that frustrate your clients

By |2015-02-24T09:32:31+00:00February 24th, 2015|Accountants, Servicing clients|

During my annual networking ski trip I asked a number of my fellow entrepreneurs and business owners to talk to me about their accountants. I have since written 3 articles for AccountingWeb by reference to the notes of those conversations.The first article has been published and has already stimulated much online discussion. By way of

Lessons for accountants from….. London cabbies

By |2014-06-17T09:30:22+00:00June 17th, 2014|Accountants, Servicing clients, STANDING OUT|

Last week many of London's black cab drivers staged a protest against the way that the authorities had treated a new competitor in the marketplace. This reminded me of the strident views that some qualified accountants express as regards the competition they face from unqualified people. Some of the reports of the cabbies'  protest suggest that their

How naturally good are you at what you do?

By |2018-07-12T07:29:41+00:00October 29th, 2013|Accountants, Key Business skills, Productivity, Servicing clients, STANDING OUT|

Some people assume that all of the important non-technical skills evidenced by successful accountants and partners can be developed merely by working alongside experienced colleagues or learning 'on the job' , through experience. Another common view is that some people are naturally ‘good’ at things as though their experiences, background and training were irrelevant.

A brave accountant admits he needs help and asks for it.

By |2018-11-08T14:18:07+00:00April 2nd, 2012|Accountants, Professional Negligence, Servicing clients, Tax related|

An accountant approached me last week to ask whether any of the members of my Tax Advice Network would be willing to work with his practice on a regular basis? The answer was 'yes'. The background to this accountant's question was not uncommon. What I admired however was his desire to address the issue. And

How loyal will your clients be?

By |2009-08-25T06:53:32+00:00August 25th, 2009|Servicing clients|

Telemarketing companies who focus on securing new clients for accountancy businesses tell me that they have never been busier. And there do seem to be a number of such specialist firms - in addition to the more general telemarketing companies that simply work for accountants as and when engaged to do so. Some telemarketers are

Where smaller firms of accountants are going wrong

By |2009-07-23T09:20:59+00:00July 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

Why bigger isn’t always best

By |2009-01-12T08:02:47+00:00January 12th, 2009|Accountants, Servicing clients|

It's worth sharing  stories I hear about  dissatisfied clients of accountants as there are always lessons that can learned.  Let me be clear this story refers to a friend of mine who has recently gone back to his old accountant. Why did 'Harold' change accountants last year?  He told me: Believe it or not it