Rising Tides

There are many issues, threats & changes (aka opportunities in disguise) in the Accounting profession right now. Some are short term some are long term. They are happening all around the globe and to ignore them will be to your detriment. Your role is to work out how you can capitalise on each one as…

5 Areas of Focus for 2013

Happy New Year! I trust you have had an enjoyable break and ready to attack the new year with gusto. Over the break I was thinking about what professional services firms (PSFs) should be focused on for 2013. I have 5 key areas of focus for every Accounting/Consulting/Coaching/Legal firm around the world – no matter how well…

Yesterday I celebrated my 20 year wedding anniversary. It’s been a great relationship – complete with extreme lows and massive highs. The highs outweigh the lows by an order of magnitude – that’s why we are still together. We are still in love and looking forward to the next 50 years together.

As you can see by the photo I was very young. Guess my age in the comments.

Anyway, I got to thinking about how Accountants select their business partners. Being in a partnership is like a marriage. It’s an interesting process that you go through. You have employees who come through the ranks and then they are “made partner”. This is business by default. Often not much thought goes into the individual, what they will be doing and how they will be doing it. As a result of this very weak selection process we have a glut of partners who are overpaid Accountants!

And don’t get me started on mergers. It seems like a good idea at the time. However, in most cases you just end up with more of the same. Here is a 21 point checklist of the ideal business partners. See how many you can tick off for your current partners!

  1. Brings something to the table – complements existing partners
  2. Is a good cultural fit in the firm
  3. Is a good communicator at the partner level
  4. Is a good communicator with team members
  5. Is a good communicator with clients
  6. Is stable – emotionally and financially
  7. Is profit and growth motivated
  8. Has a good work ethic
  9. Is reasonably fit and healthy
  10. Is at the same stage in life mentally.
  11. Shares similar values and ethics
  12. Has an ability to respect other partners
  13. Knows what they want – goal orientated
  14. Is supportive of new ideas
  15. Is flexible in their thoughts and actions
  16. Is a good business builder
  17. Is fun to be with
  18. Shares the vision
  19. Walks the talk not just talks the talk
  20. Acts in the best interests of clients and the firm at all times
  21. Can bring in new business.

If your partners do not stack up then maybe you need a divorce. I don’t!

Rob & Nat April 26 1992 Wedding Day