What’s your ‘And’?

By |2020-09-21T11:25:01+01:00September 22nd, 2020|Accountants, Career development, Conversational impact, Networking, Reputation|

What's your 'And'? Yes, we know you're an accountant. But what else are you? What else do you do? What else interests or fascinates you? A new book, written by my friend, John Garrett, explores how sharing your personal passions improves work performance, builds culture, and strengthens relationships with colleagues, clients and

How effective is your reply to the question: What do you do?

By |2020-09-07T16:20:00+01:00September 8th, 2020|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Career development, Conversational impact, Networking, Sole practitioners|

No one has asked me what I do since lockdown started. I've been thinking about how I might reply next time. What about you? What do you do? I think there are 4 standard ways we can answer the question. I know which approach I prefer. What about you? 1 State your

Future Focus: How will things have changed by the end of the (taxing) twenties?

By |2020-01-27T17:03:20+00:00January 28th, 2020|Accountants, Business advice, Career development, Cloud accounting, Future, Outsourcing, Servicing clients|

Depending upon how pedantic you are, we are at the start of a new decade (the taxing twenties?). In any event, when you consider your plans for the immediate future, it's worth considering how different things will be by 2030. Given the pace of change all around us, we can reasonably expect

Forget USPs – what are your KDIs?

By |2020-01-07T13:59:33+00:00January 7th, 2020|Accountants, Career development, STANDING OUT|

I have long advised audiences and clients that claiming to have a Unique Sales Proposition (USP) is typically a mistake - as the word 'unique' means 'unlike any other'. Rarely do I ever encounter accountants with genuinely 'unique' offerings for clients.  And it will be counter-productive to assert that something about your

Future Focus: How strong and evident are your human qualities?

By |2019-10-29T15:50:43+00:00October 29th, 2019|Accountants, Career development, Future, Key Business skills, Marketing and promotion, Strategy|

In recent years a number of commentators have suggested that we need to adopt a new mindset. Instead of distinguishing our marketing and sales activities dependent on whether our focus is 'B to B', or 'B to C', they want us to recognise that, today, everything is 'H to H'. The idea

If it’s not a lack of technical skills that is holding you back…..

By |2019-10-08T10:17:29+01:00October 8th, 2019|Accountants, Career development, Key Business skills, Sole practitioners|

Most accountants are justly proud of their technical skills. It is also common to find that some accountants undervalue the importance of ensuring that they have all the business skills they require to be profitable in the short-term and successful in the longer-term. What’s your position? Are you one of those accountants who

Are you prioritising the right type of training?

By |2019-03-12T15:11:08+00:00March 12th, 2019|Accountants, Career development, Dependability and trust, Experience and expertise, Key Business skills, Networking|

Weird question? I know. But stay with me for a moment. For as long as I can remember accountants have treated CPD as being synonymous with technical training - by which I mean technical updates and courses intended to explain new rules and regulations. And surely we have to prioritise such training?

Who gets to decide what are your top skills and expertise?

By |2019-01-08T15:12:22+00:00January 8th, 2019|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Career development, Experience and expertise, Key Business skills, Linkedin|

What are your top skills?  The key question though is not what YOU think they are, but what other people believe you are good at. What do your contacts and connections say when they reference and recommend you? And what do your clients say? A few years ago I had a surprise

They’re not ‘soft skills’ for accountants, they’re Key Business Skills

By |2018-11-12T17:39:40+00:00November 13th, 2018|Accountants, Business advice, Career development, Key Business skills, Reputation, Speaking skills|

I know that my own career success owes more to the development of non-technical skills than it does to my knowledge and application of accounting and tax law. How do we gain our technical skills? No one is born a great auditor, tax adviser or accountant. We learn by working alongside experienced

Are you a specialist or a generalist accountant?

By |2018-07-23T15:56:13+01:00July 24th, 2018|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Career development, Marketing and promotion, Sole practitioners|

Most general practitioner accountants I talk with (and I talk with a lot of them) are, obviously, generalists rather than specialists. They started out as general practitioners and stay that way as their client base has always been quite disparate. Many of those who specialise do so only because they originally trained

Why do accountants need to be enthusiastic?

By |2017-10-10T09:30:39+01:00October 10th, 2017|Accountants, Appearance, Business messaging and branding, Career development, Conversational impact, Dependability and trust, Experience and expertise, Following up, Giving, STANDING OUT|

Everyone who knows me recognises my enthusiastic nature. When I was younger I may even have been a touch too enthusiastic. I now recognise that it can unnerve those around you if you are evidently more enthusiastic than everyone else. That was an important lesson for me some years back. So now, older and wiser,

3 lessons for accountants from….. personal trainers

By |2017-07-11T10:56:09+01:00July 11th, 2017|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Career development, Experience and expertise, Reputation, Servicing clients, Sole practitioners|

I recently heard John Hardy the Founder of FASTER Health and Fitness introduce his business.  He mentioned he throught there were similarities with accountants. I have taken what he said and adapted it to provide some lessons for accountants from the business side of personal training and fitness. 1  Personality John has noted that a

Be proud and positive about your profession

By |2017-06-13T12:19:00+01:00June 13th, 2017|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Career development, Conversational impact, STANDING OUT|

This week's blog post is derived from the response I received from a recent attendee at one of my talks. She had been very enthusiastic so I asked her what she had learned specifically. This is her reply: Things I took away from yesterday: That it’s OK to be on the quiet side at networking

How accountants can take control of their career success

By |2018-07-12T08:01:25+01:00April 5th, 2017|Career development, No longer current|

Duncan Brodie is a former Finance Director who helps accountants build successful careers. I've known him a while and feel his views are worth sharing here. Duncan's views will be especially helpful to you if you are nearly or recently qualified.  As he explains: Once upon a time a professional accounting qualification almost guaranteed that

What are your top skills and expertise?

By |2018-07-12T07:56:33+01:00January 15th, 2015|Appearance, Business messaging and branding, Career development, Key Business skills, Linkedin, STANDING OUT|

The top ranked personal skill or expertise on my Linkedin profile is currently 'strategy'.  It has been moving up the list over the last year. I am flattered that hundreds of people have endorsed me for ANY skills and expertise on Linkedin. Until recently 'Accounting' was top - presumably by reference to my background in