Today's Features

How Succession Issues Are Driving Desperation Mergers

2016-ROUNDTABLE-OUTLOOK-FOR-ROSENBERG-MAP-COMMENTARY-VF-240x219Millennials, aging partners both skeptical.

They say "past results are no indication of future performance." Maybe. Maybe not. But if anyone should know, it's our panel of experts, their comments drawn from the new edition of The Rosenberg MAP Survey. These are their bullet points and comments, verbatim, looking back at the last 12 months and looking ahead to 2016. – Rick Telberg, CEO

By Terry Putney
Transition Advisors

Lessons from 2015:

The issue we are seeing that is most troublesome for firms is their lack of talent that can be developed into future leaders. Often partners want to place blame on the millennials and the different views they have regarding work-life balance.

MORE FROM THE ROSENBERG MAP SURVEY: Outlook 2016: Change Catches Up with Auditors | Strategic Plans Undermined by Out-of-Control Partners | Growth, Succession Plans Critical for Firms | Talent Wars Go from White Gloves to Boxing Gloves | Trend Outlook 2016: Change Agents Needed

However, it is clear many firms have failed to invest in leadership development. So they don’t have enough time to provide succession for retiring partners in their firms.


Businesses Place Value on Expertise

Woman's hand pressing words "ASK AN EXPERT"Shift thinking from "we" to "you."

By Martin Bissett
Passport to Partnership

Please start understanding, valuing and respecting your own value in the marketplace with clients who could not reach their goals without you.

Businesses are in need – sometimes desperate need – of your technical expertise and caring approach.

MORE ON THE PASSPORT TO PARTNERSHIP: How Well Do You Represent Your Firm? | 6 Keys to the Perfect Proposal | What Conversion Really Means for Partners | Passport to Partnership: New Research Shows Wide Gap between Partners and Partners-To-Be

Take that to them instead because, speaking as one who is looked after well myself, we love it and we are prepared to pay a premium without ever asking for discounts.


How to Find Hidden Money for Your Clients

$100 bills behind a curled pageData will lead you to opportunities if you know how to use it.

By Sandi Leyva and Michelle Long
The Ultimate Accounting Virtual Conference

We're talking about using dashboards to make more money with Mike Milan, the senior vice president of Finagraph.

MORE SMALL FIRM GROWTH STRATEGIES: Why Clients Need Dashboards | 3 Ways to Implement Value Pricing | How Small Firms Can Use Value Pricing | 3 Killer Lead Generation Channels

Mike Milan:

How do I use this dashboard to talk to an individual? Every business may be a little different but you can always start from the same template and then add in or take away.


Mobile Printing Breakthroughs for Accountants

Smart Magic WandPocket-size printer/scanners coming to market.

By Rick Richardson
Technology This Week

This week we feature two mobile printing solutions – one that’s in the concept stage and the other available for pre-order from Indiegogo.

The newest concept product is the Smart Magic Wand, designed by NamGyun-Kim for Yanko Design. The unit is both a printer and a scanner and includes an iPhone dock.

MORE TECHNOLOGY THIS WEEK:  Samsung Unveils New Flexible Batteries |  Hold On To Your Boarding Pass!  |  Control All Your Entertainment Devices from Your Smartphone  |  GE and Apple See Personalization Coming to Business   |  Google Announces A Slew Of New Devices  |  Radar Turns Your Smartphone into a Baseball Speed Detector  | Microsoft Moves Closer to Making an Android Phone  |  The Cloud Isn’t Risky. You Are. |  Hydrogen-Powered iPhone Runs for a Week  |  New Pocket-Sized Projector for the CPA Road Warrior  |  New Europay-style Credit Card Technology May Be Losing Steam |  The Newest Earthquake Early Warning System  |  Apple’s Secret Car Project Code-Named Titan  |  More...

The portable printer comes equipped with an integrated iPhone dock. Just docking your device in the cradle, you can use the Smart Magic Wand to print out anything from your iPhone including the image displaying on the screen.


Case Studies Reveal Potential LOI Issues

Model train derailed as model workers look on8 ways to drive a merger off the rails.

By Marc Rosenberg
CPA Firm Mergers: Your Complete Guide

As you will see from reading these examples of issues I have seen arise at second meetings, touchy or sensitive items are much more easily dealt with before the letter of intent is prepared than after.

MORE ON MERGERS: What to Ponder Before Issuing a Letter of Intent | Want to Merge? Ask for Data | Merger Prep: Getting to Know You | One Times Fees Is a Steal! | The Merger Process in 21 Steps | 13 Ways to Screw Up a Merger

The discussion at this second meeting steers the parties closer to a mutually acceptable transaction in the direction that the seller is looking for, thus minimizing contentious issues that often arise when an LOI is issued that amounts to a “stab in the dark” by the buyer.

Here are some agenda items for second meetings I have recently led:


Women Must See Politics As Leadership

Businesswoman sitting on table while talking with four coworkersBONUS CHECKLIST: 4 reasons women decline opportunities.

By Ida O. Abbott
Sponsoring Women: What Men Need to Know

Many women are uncomfortable calling attention to their achievements and ambitions, dislike politics, have difficulty asking others for a career boost or underestimate the importance of powerful backers. This makes it harder for potential sponsors to recognize how worthy these women are of their support.

MORE ON SPONSORING WOMEN FOR LEADERSHIP: Why Some Women Resist Using Networks | 5 Ways Women Get Shoved Aside | Why Men Don’t See Women as Leaders | Thanks for the Advice, But I’d Really Prefer a Promotion | Women Leaders Provide 6 Market Advantages | Protect Your Protégée from Flextime Saboteurs | 8 Ways Sponsors Can Highlight Opportunities

Some women hurt their own chances for sponsorship by failing to let sponsors know what they want and why they merit it. Sponsors are drawn to star performers who display confidence and a drive to succeed. Where a man might insist he is the right person for a job and ask to be promoted, a woman who is equally or even better qualified may downplay her qualifications for the job. Instead of aggressively pursuing promotions and opportunities, she waits to be asked, and then, when asked, may turn the offer down. Why?


You’re Selling All the Time

Several businesspeople talking and shaking hands, silhouette against city skylineBONUS CHECKLIST: 5 steps for breaking out of your comfort zone.

By Martin Bissett
Business Development On a Budget

Over the years, many partners have told me about their struggles to grow their firms proactively, the main one being that they feel they must sell, which goes against the grain for them. Have you ever felt that way?

Perhaps you’ve never had to sell before, and it is taking you way out of your comfort zone. You are entering into unfamiliar territory, that alien landscape called "selling."

In reality, though, you’ve been selling the whole time. To have won the work you’ve won up to now, to recruit the talent you have, to build the relationships you have – you’ve had to sell yourself at each stage. You’ve had to sell the idea that working with you is in the best interests of the other person, so you are always selling in one way or another.


Streamlining Audits by Breaking Old Habits

Senior businesswoman using tablet and desktop computersOutside help may be warranted, at least initially.

By Roman H. Kepczyk
Quantum of Paperless

Traditional audit practices use the previous year’s audit programs and processes updated for the current year as their standard operating plan. Eventually this can lead to a significant amount of “overauditing.” Breaking this habit is difficult as every level of staff has been trained in the manual processes and falls back on them when deadlines approach.

MORE ON TECH SPENDING: Why Accounts Payable Should Go Digital | Remote Deposit Is a No-Brainer | Field Auditors Need Right Equipment, Connections | Digital Workflow Systems Make Tax Season Easier | Firms Need Document Management Standards | Back Up and Check Your Backup

Many firms have rightfully transitioned to digital “document container” applications such as CaseWare, CCH Engagement and Thomson Reuters Engagement CS. Not all of these firms have changed their approach to reviewing progress on the audit and the financial reporting on a computer screen in a digital format.


How Partners View Compensation: It’s Not All about the Money

businessman on the ladder attracts dollar notes using a magnet. Sky with clouds on the background.

It's more than a dollar figure – it's a ranking.

By Marc Rosenberg
Partner Comp: Art & Science

In an ideal world, partners could objectively discuss and debate the firm’s partner compensation system without regard for its impact on their individual earnings. But of course, we don’t live in an ideal world. It’s almost impossible for partners to weigh in on the system without thinking about its impact on their individual earnings.

MORE ON PARTNER COMPENSATION: Why Most Partner Comp Systems Are Performance-Based

This is the essence of why partner compensation is such a sensitive and critically important topic to partners.