Which Competitive Force will most challenge you and your firm?

By |2019-06-19T12:55:27+01:00June 19th, 2019|Accountants, Business advice, Future, Marketing and promotion|

Whilst I pose this question about competitive forces in the context of accountants, you might also find the concept helpful when talking with clients. Michael Porter first published his five forces model in a 1979 article published in the Harvard Business Review. In the context of an accountancy firm looking to the future,

What has the biggest influence on your ability to retain clients? 

By |2019-04-23T09:35:58+01:00April 23rd, 2019|Accountants, Business advice, Conversational impact, Key Business skills, Servicing clients|

Accountants have a distinct advantage over most other service professionals. Your clients need your help on an ongoing basis, at least once a year and often more frequently than this. When we discuss the lifetime value of clients at meetings of The Inner Circle for Accountants we have to consider how long

Want to attract a different type of client?

By |2018-12-18T09:38:12+00:00December 18th, 2018|Accountants, Business advice, Business messaging and branding, Marketing and promotion, Websites|

When I ask accountants what they would like to be different in their practice, one theme is more common than any others. They frequently express the desire to have better quality clients, to increase their average fees and to be doing more interesting work. One sole practitioner accountant expressed this quite succinctly.

Don’t let yourself be lulled into inaction

By |2018-11-20T16:48:23+00:00November 20th, 2018|Accountants, Business advice, Cloud accounting, Conversational impact, Experience and expertise, Future, Servicing clients, Sole practitioners|

During my talks about the future for accountants I sometimes share a famous quote from Bill Gates.  Before repeating it here, let me just offer some context. There has long been a tendency to over-hype new ideas and initiatives. Some accountants jump on the bandwagon early which is great. I don’t do

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

How many of the 5 types of advisory services can you provide to clients?

By |2018-07-04T09:37:21+01:00July 3rd, 2018|Accountants, Business advice, Cloud accounting, Future, Mentoring, Servicing clients|

Most smaller practitioners are focused on offering a compliance focused service to clients. Lots of people are saying you must start offering advisory services; and plenty of accountants think they already do this to a degree. In my talks I often reference 5 types of non-compliance service and how it will take

What’s the first thing you need to find out from a new client?

By |2018-05-28T10:29:23+01:00May 29th, 2018|Accountants, Business advice, Business messaging and branding, Starting out|

When you are approached by a prospective new client it is tempting to simply give them what they say they want. Most often this will be a fee quote to help them with their annual compliance obligations. As this area of work becomes more commoditised so you need to distinguish yourself from other accountants.

The real reasons you need to do business advice properly

By |2018-05-22T23:03:11+01:00May 15th, 2018|Accountants, Business advice, Cloud accounting, Future, Servicing clients|

Why are so many consultants telling accountants that they need to start providing advisory services to clients? You've been doing this for years haven't you? Or else your clients don't want, don't need or can't afford to pay for such services.     Hmm. Have you really been doing this for years? I know many

Not all Accountants are business advisers

By |2018-11-18T19:15:54+00:00December 3rd, 2009|Accountants, Business advice, Productivity|

AccountingWeb recently ran a series of articles about accountants as business advisers. My contribution as Consultant Practice Editor approached the subject from an unusual angle. There is already plenty of material that seeks to persuade accountants that they need to become better business advisers, and how they could do this. My article was titled: