To be a winner and make more money in our A&A practice, we must be the biggest loser! I'm talking about weight, not physical weight but those unnecessary traditions, ways of doing things and clients we carry around every day! To maximize our earnings potential, particularly in our smaller CPA firms, we've got to get rid of some things that are "weighing" us down. Here's the short list for the biggest losers:
- Get rid of every client that thinks they are your only client, except when it comes to paying full fees on time! Making endless phone calls, perpetuating arguments against what's right, treating us like gophers and demanding champagne service for beer prices are just a few of the characteristics of "loser" candidates. Each "loser" can be replaced with five winners!
- Consider your ways and lose some of yesterday's "best practices." The "it ain't broke don't fix it" approaches to performing engagements has to go. No matter whether its audits, reviews or compilations, the new standards only have room for what's new! Surprisingly, thinking and reasoning are what's new! No more cookie cutters! Every engagement is not the same. The standards call it professional judgment!
- Can your "canned" practice aids! Take a day and create some that fit your clients. Summarize applicable pronouncements and create forms and checklists that do what the standards require. Don't have the time? Email me and I'll send you the list! Using practice aids that include everything every auditor will ever need to know on every engagement is weight that drags profits down!
- Lose the "I can't keep up with the changes" negative thinking. Find the best CPE for the best price and figure out the best ways to transfer it to engagements to make the best profits! Find a good small audit consultant that knows what he's doing and lock arms! Together we can change the world!
- Stop taking on new clients that are outside your practice "niche." It's time to decide what we want to do and start losing the work that isn't fun. The more clients we acquire in our "fun zone," the happier and the more productive we'll be...and so will our employees!
- Stop trembling when your peer reviewers visit. Make sure you are ready for them by conducting thorough inspections or hiring a qualified consultant to do it for you. Get ready and get things right before they get there! Stand up for your "rights!"
- Re-assess your engagement software. It doesn't have to do everything or integrate with everything. It just needs to do what you need it to do on your jobs! If you have primarily small jobs, lose your big-job software. Find a system designed for smaller applications or revert to spreadsheets and hardcopies! Invest in what does the job today, not what you expect tomorrow. When tomorrow comes, you can add-on or get new if you need to!
- Lose any "loser" attitudes. Think about making more money, all the time! Teach your staff how to make more money, for the firm and for themselves. Make up your mind to shed every bit of weight that will keep you from your goals. Determine not to quit until you are the biggest loser!
If you've made it this far in reading this blog, I know something about you. You have what it takes to be a winner! Post a comment and tell our readers what you are doing to become the biggest loser!
Larry Perry, CPA