Today's Features —

Take Advantage of 4 Key Marketing Strategies

Agenda clipboard checklist

Serve your clients better and watch your practice revenues grow. By Sandi Smith Leyva The Accountant’s Accelerator The latest marketing strategies and […]

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Why Women Resist Networking and Powerful Role Models

Young businesswoman and social network over white background

4 ways sponsors can help. By Ida O. Abbott Sponsoring Women: What Men Need to Know Networking issues: Women tend to have […]

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Making Digital Tax Process Easier Is All About the Workflow

Process Touch Screen Showing Workflow Design

4 ways the new breed of workflow application can simplify your tax season. By Roman H. Kepczyk Quantum of Paperless The most […]

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16 Steps for Managing (not Juggling) Multiple Projects

Ed Mendlowitz CPA The Practice Doctor Q and AProject management for accountants.

By Ed Mendlowitz
The CPA Trendlines Practice Doctor

QUESTION: Any tips on managing multiple projects?

RESPONSE: Here is a method I use for you to consider.

I hope it helps you.

  1. Estimate the time the project will take.
  2. Determine the due date. READ MORE →

2015 FORECAST: Healthy Revenue Gains Nationwide for Firms of All Sizes

Business hand holding  hot chart in crystal ball

Exclusive to CPA Trendlines

Tax and accounting firms across the nation are projecting in the new “National MAP Survey of CPA Firm Statistics” steady revenue gains through the end of 2014 and into the New Year.

A big chunk of CPA firms are increasing their reliance on consulting services as a fee generator during the profession’s third year of steady expansion in 2013, according to the report, best known as “The Rosenberg Survey” for its founder, CPA Trendlines contributor Marc Rosenberg. READ MORE →

Like Herding Cats: Partners Must ‘Walk Together’

businessman hand holding puzzle pieces

By Robert J. Lees, August J. Aquila and Derek Klyhn
Creating the Effective Partnership

In our work with managing partners, we always talk about the importance of the partners “walking together,” of sharing that common vision.

But if the partners are to share the vision, they have to play an active part in determining the firm’s direction – and, critically, how it’s going to get there.

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4 Ways to Decide How to Pay Out Capital

Businessman calculates numbersHow firms decide the capital payable to a retiring partner.

By Marc Rosenberg
Retirements & Buyouts

We know there are two parts to retirement benefits:

  • Capital
  • Goodwill

The issues involved in determining the capital are very few and straightforward compared with the goodwill determination, which is far more intricate and nuanced. In fact, there are four main variables in calculating the capital. This compares to 25 variables for goodwill. READ MORE →

Mommy Bias Persists

Woman torn between work and familyFathers have at least two advantages over mothers.

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

One pattern of gender bias is exhibiting “maternal wall” bias, which leads people to believe that women with children are unable to meet the demands of leadership.

MORE ON SPONSORING WOMEN FOR LEADERSHIP: 5 Ways Gender Bias Plays Out at CPA Firms | 3 Reasons Why Men Don’t Pick Women Protégées | Men Advance 2 to 1 over Women without Sponsors | 18 Ways Sponsors Can Help Their Protegees | The 6 Market Advantages of Women-Led Firms | Beyond Mentoring: Why Sponsoring Women for Leadership Matters

People assume that women with children are less committed to their work. This bias arises from the stereotypes that create conflicting expectations for mothers and career women: Good mothers should always be available to their children, while good business people should always be available to their clients. READ MORE →

Is Your Network Drive a Disaster Waiting to Happen?

Big pile of wires on the floorCloud systems can ease the burden at upgrade time.

By Roman H. Kepczyk
Quantum of Paperless

The network drive in most firms is not very well organized and needs the most cleanup. This happens because it is usually managed with Windows Explorer, which allows almost anyone to create or access a file anywhere on the drive.

MORE ON TECH SPENDING: Digital Fax Has Benefits You May Be Ignoring | Wireless Is Hot, and Here’s How to Handle It | How Safe Is Your Internet Lifeline? | New Tech Tools for the 24/7 Accounting Firm | The Single Best Defense Against Computer Viruses | When to Adopt Microsoft’s New Office Apps | How to Choose the Right Backup System | How to Know It’s Time to Scrap Your Old Server | Step 1 in Building the Paperless Firm: Scanners | How Many Computer Monitors Do You Need?

Unfortunately, there is seldom a firm standard that is adhered to, allowing users to create files with any name they want and store it anywhere they please. The result can be files that are hard to find and slow to search across the network. READ MORE →

Big Firms Keep Getting Bigger

Good news for small firms, too, but not as much.financial graph on blackboard

For CPA firms, bigger is better and keeps getting better in terms of revenues and profits for the practices and income for their individual practitioners.

So say the results of one of the profession’s best-respected monitors of practice management trends and CPA firms’ financial performance, “The National MAP Survey of CPA Firm Statistics: The Rosenberg Survey,” which is based on data from across the profession from solo practitioners to firms with more than $20 million in net fees.

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6 Ways to Take a Client Beyond Tax Prep

Ed Mendlowitz CPA The Practice Doctor Q and ASet an agenda; call a meeting.

By Ed Mendlowitz
The CPA Trendlines Practice Doctor

QUESTION: I have many small business tax clients and seem to lose them as they grow. I provide good service, never have extensions and call the clients in July to see if I can update their books and in December if they want any year-end tax planning. What else can I do?

RESPONSE: Based on our conversation, you are their tax preparer and they do not think of you as their “accountant” or business advisor. And based on what you told me, you aren’t, although you obviously have the skills. READ MORE →

Four Ways to Stop Leaving Money on the Table

Young woman using a calculatorMost CPA firms miss 60% of their potential revenues. Here’s how to start fixing the problem.

By Sandi Smith Leyva
The Accountant’s Accelerator

Accounting firms have done a great job adopting paperless office technologies, the web and even cloud computing, so you may feel you have been doing all you can to streamline margins, become “client-centric,” as some consultants call it, and grow your practice. But I believe there is even more opportunity that very few, if any, in the accounting profession have fully identified or embraced. READ MORE →

5 Questions About Your Firm’s Direction

Businesspeople Moving Along CorridorSetting direction is the first step.

By Robert J. Lees, August J. Aquila and Derek Klyhn
Creating the Effective Partnership

How do successful managing partners respond to the internal and external challenges they face?

Without exception, all of the partners we spoke to talked about the need to have a clear sense of direction that the partners, in particular, could coalesce around. But what they considered even more important is the translation of that direction into a compelling vision and the strategies for achieving it.

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Jody Padar to Lead All-Day Online “Radical CPA” Workshop

Visionary CPA Presents New Roadmap for Creating the Future-Ready Accounting Firm


Padar

Padar

Forward-thinking CPAs will gather online Tuesday, Dec. 16, for a collaborative workshop to share strategies and techniques for a radical transformation of the accounting firm business model.

Titled “The Radical CPA: New Rules for the Future-Ready Firm,” the web conference will be led by Jody Padar, CPA, MST, one of the profession’s leading innovators and author of the forthcoming book by the same name.

The Radical CPA

Learn more

CPAs are registering at radicalcpa.eventbrite.com.
The book is available for pre-order at special discount from store.cpatrendlines.com/shop/radical

“This workshop will take everyone on a deep dive into the client services and management processes that define a future-ready firm,” Padar says. “It’s a real opportunity for us to take our firms in new directions, with real implementation tools and a roadmap to get started. And all you need is an Internet connection and a computer with video capabilities.”

The six-hour event, sponsored in part by CCH and Avalara, will leverage new interactive community-building technologies never before deployed in the CPA profession. Conference attendees will earn six CPE credits and receive Padar’s new book as a free bonus. READ MORE →

Partners May Balk at Guaranteeing Retirement Obligations

Golden Egg in Nest with Thousands of Dollars on Table.Forget “one times fees” for goodwill.

By Marc Rosenberg
Retirements & Buyouts

One of the first and most critical decisions in creating a partner retirement plan is the overall valuation of the firm. The value of a CPA firm has two components:

Capital. The valuation of capital for internal partner retirement purposes is almost always the capital on the firm’s balance sheet. If the capital is measured on the accrual basis, the two largest accounts by far will be WIP and A/R. They should be conservatively reserved. READ MORE →

Different Standards, Double Binds Challenge Women

Businessman cutting back jobs. All on white background.Women are judged on their performance, men on their potential.

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

Common patterns of gender bias include holding women to higher standards than men and expressing contradictory expectations (“double binds”) for women.

MORE ON SPONSORING WOMEN FOR LEADERSHIP: 5 Ways Gender Bias Plays Out at CPA Firms | 3 Reasons Why Men Don’t Pick Women Protégées | Men Advance 2 to 1 over Women without Sponsors | 18 Ways Sponsors Can Help Their Protegees | The 6 Market Advantages of Women-Led Firms | Beyond Mentoring: Why Sponsoring Women for Leadership Matters

Different standards: People expect more of women than of men and they hold women to higher standards. This sets the bar higher for women who aspire to leadership and makes it more difficult for them to prove their value to the organization, even though research shows that women outperform men in 17 of 67 critical leadership skills, while men outperform women in only four. READ MORE →