Change Is on the Horizon

Post with two signs, "same" and "change"BONUS: An equation for reaching your desired profit level.

By Rob Nixon

If you are dissatisfied with the performance (personal satisfaction and/or monetary rewards) of your current firm then you will need to change what you are doing. Not tweak it a few percentage points in productivity, average hourly rate, write-offs or lockup. No!

MORE ON STRATEGY: Do Your Clients Want More? | Why ‘Steady as She Goes’ Isn’t Enough | The Final Critical Traits: How Do Your Tires Look? | How to Calculate a Value Price | Boost Efficiency and Your Bottom Line | 4 Sales Systems and Some Secret Sauce | Marketing Must Generate Leads | Be an 'Object of Interest' | Turn Your Knowledge Into Products | Why Clients Really Stay | Don’t Let Technology Make You Dumber
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You will need to change what you are doing dramatically if you want a different result. The good news is that the change needed is not that hard to do once you get your motivation and mindset right.

The New Equation

If the old equation is internally focused then the new model is externally focused. It is based on marketing, sales, building relationships, value pricing and customer service. This equation below is a mathematical equation which, when you know and adjust the numbers, becomes a very powerful formula.
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Do Your Clients Want More?

Woman in white office meeting with manIf you can see a crisis coming, why not say so?

By Rob Nixon

I know that many (not all) of your clients want more help then you currently give them. I have asked them directly what they want – and so have many others.

MORE ON STRATEGY: Why ‘Steady as She Goes’ Isn’t Enough | Order Takers and History Writers | 4 More Critical Traits: Be Your Best You | Why Old Pricing Models Are Unethical | 8 Ways to Improve Firm Profits | 17 Killer Questions for Prospects | Growing Your Client Database | Niche Markets Are Your Best Buyers
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There have been two significant and personal surveys done to prove that your clients want more.
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Why ‘Steady as She Goes’ Isn’t Enough

Young man steering a wooden ship

It's not just your firm that suffers – it's YOU.

By Rob Nixon

The traditional growth model is a slow and steady path to moderate success.

MORE ON GROWTH STRATEGY: Order Takers and History Writers | The Bizarre Habits of Accountants | 12 Traits of a Better You | 8 Ways to Become Super-Efficient | Sales Is Like Workflow Management | How to Dominate the Internet | Marketing Objectives Determine Marketing Amount | What Products Should You Create? | Keep a Watchful Eye on Clients
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Most years an accounting firm grows by revenue. It’s a simple equation. Put the charge rates up each year (unfortunately salaries go up as well), accept a few new clients by referral, retain the clients you already have and voila, the revenue increases.
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Order Takers and History Writers

Hand writing a letter with a plume"Clients want you to be proactive."

By Rob Nixon

Unbeknownst to those who work in accounting practices, the favorite word (and often it seems the firm’s mantra and culture) is to "wait."

MORE ON STRATEGY: The Bizarre Habits of Accountants | The Final Critical Traits: How Do Your Tires Look? | How to Calculate a Value Price | Boost Efficiency and Your Bottom Line | 4 Sales Systems and Some Secret Sauce | Marketing Must Generate Leads | Be an 'Object of Interest'
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Here is some dialogue you may have heard before:

“Why can’t we get that job out?” “I have sent the client an email and I am now waiting for them to send the missing bank statement in.”
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The Bizarre Habits of Accountants

Percentage signs on round hanging tagsEight crazy assumptions destroying tax and accounting firms.

By Rob Nixon

I am convinced that the inventor of the current profit model of an accounting practice was NOT very good at strategy or business development.

MORE ON STRATEGY: The Final Critical Traits: How Do Your Tires Look? | 4 More Critical Traits: Be Your Best You | 12 Traits of a Better You | Why Old Pricing Models Are Unethical | 8 Ways to Improve Firm Profits | 17 Killer Questions for Prospects
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The Final Critical Traits: How Do Your Tires Look?

12-trait "spider wheel" diagramPlus 7 ways to practice discipline in an accounting firm.

By Rob Nixon

It's time to focus on the final four of the 12 critical traits on you becoming a better you and the best business leader you can be, including having fun and leaving a legacy.

MORE ON STRATEGY: 4 More Critical Traits: Be Your Best You | 12 Traits of a Better You | 8 Ways to Become Super-Efficient | Sales Is Like Workflow Management | Sales Is about Trust | How to Dominate the Internet | Marketing Objectives Determine Marketing Amount | What Products Should You Create? | Keep a Watchful Eye on Clients | Rewards Go Far Beyond Money

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4 More Critical Traits: Be Your Best You

12-trait "spider wheel" diagramIncluding 10 steps to boosting your self-belief, or "mana."

By Rob Nixon

I'm continuing with the 12 critical traits on you becoming a better you, including self-belief ... and failure. Yes, failure!

MORE ON STRATEGY: 12 Traits of a Better You | How to Calculate a Value Price | Boost Efficiency and Your Bottom Line | 4 Sales Systems and Some Secret Sauce | Marketing Must Generate Leads | Be an 'Object of Interest' | Marketing Must Be About Sales | Turn Your Knowledge Into Products | Why Clients Really Stay | 8 Ways to Build Team Engagement | How to Create 4 New Billable Hours per Day
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These are the next four traits that when implemented fully will serve you well on your quest to become the best business leader you can be.
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12 Traits of a Better You

Man facing mirror that has bursting out of it a hand holding a red question markPlus a 12-step annual goal-setting process.

By Rob Nixon

I've said that you should design your business by your rules and the way you want it to be. You’re taking all the risk so you should have all the spoils.

MORE ON STRATEGY: How to Calculate a Value Price | Why Old Pricing Models Are Unethical | 8 Ways to Improve Firm Profits | 17 Killer Questions for Prospects | Growing Your Client Database | Niche Markets Are Your Best Buyers | Is Your Business By Design or Default?

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Many partners of accounting firms get the concept and they agree with the theory. What I find is that they often lack the personal development to pull it off.
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How to Calculate a Value Price

Price and value balanced on scale above a tablet computer3 areas of focus.

By Rob Nixon

The problem with pricing by the hour is that the assumption is that the price per hour is correct (often calculated by a salary multiple) and the time to do the task was correct. The assumption is that time multiplied by the rate equals the correct price.

MORE ON STRATEGY: Why Old Pricing Models Are Unethical | 8 Ways to Become Super-Efficient | Sales Is Like Workflow Management | Sales Is about Trust | How to Dominate the Internet | Marketing Objectives Determine Marketing Amount | What Products Should You Create? | Keep a Watchful Eye on Clients | Rewards Go Far Beyond Money | People Still Needed, But In Different Ways
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In my view, nothing could be further from the truth.
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Why Old Pricing Models Are Unethical

Listen to the marketplace.

By Rob Nixon

I am using the ethics card right up front to get your attention.

MORE ON STRATEGY: 8 Ways to Become Super-Efficient | Boost Efficiency and Your Bottom Line | 4 Sales Systems and Some Secret Sauce | Marketing Must Generate Leads | Be an 'Object of Interest' | Marketing Must Be About Sales | Turn Your Knowledge Into Products | Why Clients Really Stay | 8 Ways to Build Team Engagement | How to Create 4 New Billable Hours per Day | Do You Know What Clients Want? | Is Your Business By Design or Default? | The World Is Flat | The Profession Disrupted: Compliance Commoditized
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I personally feel that pricing by the hour in arrears is an unethical way to price. Here’s why:
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8 Ways to Become Super-Efficient

How many open jobs do you have right now? Why?

By Rob Nixon

How do you get efficient and take time out of every single client job?

MORE ON STRATEGY: Boost Efficiency and Your Bottom Line | 8 Ways to Improve Firm Profits | 17 Killer Questions for Prospects | Growing Your Client Database | Niche Markets Are Your Best Buyers | 8 Questions for Product Creation | How to Deliver Wow! Every Day | Communicate Until It Hurts | Why a Virtual Team Makes Sense | 14 Ways to Leverage Client Data for New Billings | What It Means to Be a Real-Time Accountant | 12 Predictions on the Future of Accounting | Will the Internet Replace CPAs?
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After many years helping accounting firms to be more efficient, I have observed that there are eight key ways to get super-efficient with any accounting or advisory project. The premise on this list is that you have a good team of people so I am not covering that here.
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