Find out what they want and give it to them

You may well have come across the original quote from Steve Jobs, but do you use it in your business? Do you actually ask your clients what support, advice, services they need or do you just assume? My clients don’t want a business plan. My clients think we provide that already, so they won’t pay for it. Really… These are two comments I’ve heard recently from more than one accountant.…  Read more

Why are you using all that software?

You wouldn’t back every horse in a race. So why are you using all that software? Diagnostax, The Gap, Clarity, Syft, Fathom, Float… …I could go on, but you get the picture… You’re keen to not ‘miss the boat’ so look at all the software that’s out there that can help you provide ‘advisory’ services to clients. The result is you get overwhelm. Your head spinning, listening to and trying…  Read more

The problems we all face

Most accountants face the same problems at some point in the life of their accountancy business. These problems appear to be, one, two or all three of: Not earning enough Working too hard Not doing enough of the ‘right’ work These problems are symptoms of deeper underlying issues. Not earning enough can be the symptom of: Not having enough clients Not charging enough Not working efficiently Senior team members (usually…  Read more

5 Ways I Transformed my Business no. 2: Pricing

The earlier you get your pricing right the better. You need to work out what you want to charge and not be influenced by other factors – how much you need the work, whether you like the client, what mood you’re in. Try and remove emotion from it. Easier said than done! I was guilty, as are many others, in the early days desperate to win work you price low…  Read more

5 Ways I Transformed my Business no. 1: Systems and Processes

When starting out I had no set or predefined systems or processes. I had left practice very soon after qualifying and the practice work experience I had was mostly in audit. It wasn’t the best training for me if I was going to start running a small practice! I knew the work that needed to be done but I had no system. I learnt on the job so to speak…  Read more

Clients – I need some, where are they?

Regardless of whether you’ve planned starting your practice for months or you’ve started at short notice, it’s highly likely that the dilemma and uncertainty over where your next clients will come from will be a constant cause of anxiety until you have enough to make sure bills are paid. Where you find your clients will very much depend on your approach – do you want to work with anyone, what…  Read more

Educating Clients and Avoiding Unnecessary Meetings

Even the best systems and processes for completing work in your practice will fall down if you don’t tell your clients what you’re doing, when and why. You need to allow plenty of time for clients to respond to requests for information. Remember the numbers aren’t always their priority – they have a business to run! Communicate to them in plenty of time, let them know at the start of…  Read more

People Don’t Know What They Want

“People don’t know what they want until you show it to them.” This is a great quote. It’s by Steve Jobs and describes so accurately what it is that Apple does through its innovation. But it should also be applied to your accountancy practice and specifically the services you provide. Have you ever had a client leave because they’d spoken to another accountant who offered to provide monthly management accounts,…  Read more

Where Do I Start?

Recognising that your accountancy practice isn’t working the way you want is the first step. At this point it’s natural to feel a sense of overwhelming anxiety and think “where do I start?!” It can feel like there’s so much to do and that it all needs to be done at the same time. This happened to me a few years ago. My practice had increased fee income by 30%…  Read more

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