Dealing With D Clients (You Know Who We Mean)

ABCD PotAll A's isn't necessarily the goal.

By Bill Reeb and Dominic Cingoranelli
CPA Trendlines / Succession Institute

Partners, and in some firms, managers, need to take their responsibility for client relationship management seriously.

MORE ON PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT: Developing a Three-Year Vision [VIDEO] | Younger Partners See Succession Differently | Partners as Role Models: The Good, Bad & Ugly | 4 Ways to Create More Capacity | CPA Firm Performance Assessments: 15 Core Competencies, 21 Questions | What Having Your Employees’ Backs Means | 5 Harmful Management Attitudes (and How to Fix Them)
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In order to more fully explain these roles and responsibilities, we need to define for you what we mean when we refer to A, B, C and D clients.
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Firms Only Grow When Partners Play Their Roles

Money tree growing in the middle of green meadowHow often are you seeing your clients?

By Bill Reeb and Dominic Cingoranelli
CPA Trendlines / Succession Institute

Whether you simply desire to improve your firm’s operations, or identify and implement a new long-term strategy, you need to be clear about the role that the owner(s), partners or shareholders should be playing in your firm.

MORE ON PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT: How Big ‘Books’ Hurt Firms | How Small ‘Books’ Hurt Firms | Why the Partner Agreement Matters | Merging for the Wrong Reasons | Accountability Includes Partners | 7 Succession Questions to Ignore for Now | Develop Your Employees or Suffer the Consequences
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The roles and responsibilities we’ve suggested are based on the best practices we’ve had the opportunity to observe and be involved with in our work with CPA firms throughout North America.
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How Big ‘Books’ Hurt Firms

Young businessman with forehead resting on handsThe invisible hazards of book of business.

By Bill Reeb and Dominic Cingoranelli
CPA Trendlines / Succession Institute

As we stated in our last column, balancing “book of business” is one of the largest stumbling blocks for CPA firms.

MORE ON PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT: How Small ‘Books’ Hurt Firms | The Four Basic Parts of CPA Firm Partner Agreements | Younger Partners See Succession Differently | How to Compensate Your Managing Partner | The Job of Managing Partner: Empowered or Emasculated? | How the Best Managing Partners Turn Ideas into Reality | Make Accountability a Process | Accountability Requires Clear Expectations | Base Retirement on Today’s Operations | How Involved Should Retired Owners Be? | How to Find a Partner’s Replacement
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It is difficult to resolve because it is symptomatic, for most firms, of some real trouble brewing.
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How Small ‘Books’ Hurt Firms

Businessman sitting at desk, looking forward and smilingLeverage, capacity and overservice are just some of the issues.

By Bill Reeb and Dominic Cingoranelli
CPA Trendlines / Succession Institute

Balancing “book of business” is one of the largest stumbling blocks for CPA firms. It is difficult to resolve because it is symptomatic, for most firms, of some real trouble brewing.

MORE ON PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT: The Four Basic Parts of CPA Firm Partner Agreements | Developing a Three-Year Vision [VIDEO] | MPs: How to Elect Them … and Fire Them | Managing the Managing Partner | Accountability Is for Everyone | Firms Say What Would Change Retirement Pay | How Retirement Issues Affect Succession Planning | Develop Your Employees or Suffer the Consequences | Job 1 for The Practice Owner: Client Management
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Optimal Book Size

The optimum condition for firms to flourish is for books of business to be balanced throughout the firm. From the largest book to the smallest, the percentage gap between them should be fairly small (about 20-25 percent or less than a couple hundred thousand in fees).
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When Partners Leave: What to Do Today, to Be Prepared for Tomorrow

Man taking medication from caretakerSet policies now based on business, not emotion.

By Bill Reeb and Dominic Cingoranelli
CPA Trendlines / Succession Institute

Let's review departure/termination policies.

MORE ON PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT: The Four Basic Parts of CPA Firm Partner Agreements | Developing a Three-Year Vision [VIDEO] | MPs: How to Elect Them … and Fire Them | Firms Say What Would Change Retirement Pay | Action Plans for Transitioning Partners | How Retirement Issues Affect Succession Planning
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These may include:
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The Four Basic Parts of CPA Firm Partner Agreements

Time to retire clock faceIt's complicated. But proper policies ease buyouts and transitions.

By Bill Reeb and Dominic Cingoranelli
CPA Trendlines / Succession Institute

Here is a list of common policies regarding partner/shareholder agreements that we cover with our firms, as well as some common issues that are important to address in the policies.

MORE ON PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT: Developing a Three-Year Vision [VIDEO] | Why the Partner Agreement Matters | Younger Partners See Succession Differently | How to Compensate Your Managing Partner | The Job of Managing Partner: Empowered or Emasculated? | How the Best Managing Partners Turn Ideas into Reality | How Retired Partners Are Robbing their Own Firms | Action Plans for Transitioning Partners | How Retirement Issues Affect Succession Planning | Develop Your Employees or Suffer the Consequences
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The SOP (standard operating policy) categories are:
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Developing Your CPA Firm’s Three-Year Vision [VIDEO]

Featuring Bill Reeb and Dom Cingoranelli.

Presented by the CPA Trendlines Succession Institute Practice Management Resource Center

Reeb and Cingoranelli explain how to – and how not to – approach strategic planning for your firm.

MORE on STRATEGY: Younger Partners See Succession Differently | How to Compensate Your Managing Partner | The Job of Managing Partner: Empowered or Emasculated? | How the Best Managing Partners Turn Ideas into Reality | Make Accountability a Process |Accountability Requires Clear Expectations | Base Retirement on Today’s Operations

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They start with the objective of developing a three-year vision statement for the firm “that explains where you want the firm to be in three years, while keeping an external focus.”

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