Take a Cue from Venture Capitalists: Your Firm Needs a Brain Trust Trinity

How to give your firm the three distinct personality traits that spell outrageous success.

By Sandi Smith, CPA
Accountant's Accelerator

I was reading Chip Conley’s book, The Rebel Rules: Daring to be Yourself in Business. Despite its title, the book doles out fairly standard business advice, except for a handful of tiny tidbits of sheer brilliance. One is the list of items that investors are looking for when considering providing startup money to new businesses.

Sandi Smith

More for soloists and small firms:   Accountants, Do You Know Your Opportunity Number?  •   Five Ideas to Reduce Client Price-Sensitivity • Rise to the Top with a Fresh Elevator Speech  •  Four Ways to Practice Entrepreneurial Perseverance • 5 Mistakes to Avoid When Seeking New Clients The Top 12 Business Card Blunders Accountants Make Seven Tips to Keep the Clients You Have How to Attract Clients Like a Magnet Eleven Easy Ways to Deliver More Value to Clients • 

Even if you’re never going to seek venture capital money to help to fund your practice, Chip's advice makes a great question to consider for your firm, especially if yours is a small or sole-owned firm. READ MORE →

Overcoming the Three Biggest Obstacles in Succession Planning at CPA Firms

Hint: Start linking it to compensation.

by Marc Rosenberg, CPA
Author of "CPA Firm Succession Planning"

It’s common sense that the key to succession planning is developing future leaders, a practice at which the vast majority of CPA firms billing under $15-million-a year struggle with.

Marc Rosenberg

Marc Rosenberg

More on CPA firm management and leadership for PRO members [Go PRO here] :   CPA Firm Merger “Non-Negotiables”      The “Aha Moment” in CPA Firm Leadership      Leadership Is Overrated: It’s Good Management that Makes Successful Firms •  40 Great Ways to Improve Firm Profitability  •  Four Management Metrics that Fool Even the Best-Run Firms  •  19 Ways to Improve Accounting Firm Profitability De-Bunking the Myth about Niche Marketing for Tax and Accounting FirmsPractice Development Is No Longer an Optional Activity10 Good Ways the Achieve Partner AccountabilityPick Your Partners Right to Begin WithThe First Nine Questions Your Partner Team Needs to Embrace for Optimal ProfitabilityProfitability and The Value of Strategic ThinkingThe Five Essential Building Blocks for Creating a Strong Accounting FirmThe Seven Signs of Great Leadership in a CPA FirmCompensation Issues for the New Managing Partner 

Here are three tactics for developing future leaders: READ MORE →

The 16-Point Partner Compensation Checkup

How to slice the profits pie.

Ever wonder about revamping the partner compensation system for your firm? But how to assess partner performance?  And how to reward the right things?

A firm's compensation system is a reflection of its culture and competitive realities, according to August Aquila, a regular CPA Trendlines contributor and leading practice management consultant.

More for CPA firm partner groups at CPA Trendlines PRO members:  Seven Ways to Build the Right Culture | How to Change a Partner  | How a Founding Partner Passes the Baton to a New Managing Partner   |   Six Reasons NOT to Plan for Succession   |  How to Apply Sam Walton’s 10 Rules for Success at Your Firm |   Nine Steps to Effective Succession Planning for the Small FirmThinking Merger? Look Before You Leap 

If it's been a while since you gave your comp system a checkup, then you might be interested in Aquila's 16-point partner compensation checkup questionnaire to get you thinking about how effective your current compensation plan is: