You were trained as an Accountant but that is not what your clients want. They want someone to talk to, to counsel them and to guide them. The savvy ones want you to coach them in their financial life.
I believe the true purpose of your client relationships is to make sure that your clients are buying everything that they need that helps them achieve their financial goals. Period.
You are the trusted financial coach. The above sentence is the core action of being that trusted coach. Read it again.
Now, you may not be delivering all the services that are needed but you are ‘directing the traffic’ and you are the centerpiece (the hub) of the professional services relationship. Many firms offer a broad range of services in house so the client doesn’t need to go anywhere but your shop. That’s up to you what you deliver.
The reason clients stay with you for a very long time is because of ‘financial intimacy’. You have financial intimacy over them. You are touching their numbers. In some cases, you know things about them that only you know.
What are you doing to REALLY help your clients with their financial improvement?
Let’s look at your business clients. What is the number one product they could buy from you that would help them be even more successful – in some cases save them from going out of business?
Every Accountant I ask that question of answers the same way – a budget & cashflow forecast. Everyone says the same thing. So we all agree it’s important – especially in these times!
If you agree it’s important then how many of your clients have a live, working and reliable one?
And I know the answer to that as well – NONE. Or close to none.
If you know it’s the number one thing they need, then I think you are breaching your duty of care by not insisting they have one.
You are not being the financial coach by not offering services that they really need.
To take the idea of the financial coach further I also believe you need to lead by example when it comes to business success. You need to run a better business than your clients that you’re leading. Your clients look up to you in so many ways, they trust you.
Here’s a question to ponder.
With the way you run your business, would you like to be led by you?
How are your finances? How profitable is your firm? On profit, I get firms to around 60% profit before Partner salaries while the Partners are working less than 500 client hours. How is your record keeping, systems, KPI monitoring, processes, accounts receivable, WIP management?
Remember – they’re looking up to you. If you run a better business then you can advise on how you do that.
I was fortunate to have left school at the age of 16. I have a life education not a formal education. At the age of 17 (now 51), I got ‘hooked’ on business and personal development material. I have listened / read / viewed / huge amounts of practical business material and more importantly implemented the relevant strategies. I have attended countless events, hired coaches and followed people who were already experts in their field. I still do around 20 ‘learning days’ per year on a variety of topics.
I took the view that for me to be sharp and always have an edge I needed outside help. People who have ‘been there, done that’ and I have traveled the world to seek out the help. Today I have a financial coach, a golf coach, a business coach and a life coach.
If you want to build a better business you need to first become a better business person.
After 26 years working with Accountants all over the world, seeing what works and what does not, I have come to the conclusion that if you want to improve then you need outside guidance. To give you a different perspective and edge.
You’re coaching others, who’s coaching you?
If you’re over £500k/$1M in revenue now, 4 or less Partners, ambitious AND coachable then let’s start a dialogue and see if I can help you achieve your goals. Book a strategy session with me here..