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Achieving Your Goals Takes More Than Good Intentions

By, Keith RosenThroughout my career as a business owner, a sales trainer and a business coach, I've noticed a consistent theme in relation to achieving greater levels of success. That is, the professionals who are extremely productive have taken the time to define their goals and a roadmap to attain what they want most. While some enjoy the excitement of strategizing for the New Year, others find themselves intimidated by the goal setting process.
A&A

Targeting Those Caring For Elder Parents

by Michael P. Sullivan, President, 50-Plus Communications Consulting Does anyone ever really plan ahead to care for an aging parent? Not unless the older adult is in a troublesome or even critical state. Elder caregiving almost becomes a complete surprise. We don’t normally set aside money or time for the task. In fact, we are usually unprepared for it. And, often when it does occur, we tend to deny it’s happening. And yet there are critical issues that accompany the complex, extraordinarily powerful emotions of caring for loved ones who are elderly, disabled or ill.
Practice Management

Practice Idea: Semi-Annual Client Check Ups

Guest Author: Michael Platt, AccountingWEB, Inc. Every six months you go to your dentist for a check up, and probably have done so for years. You do this because your dental professional encourages it, and because you know it's the right thing to do.

The Auditing Debate: What's The Real Issue?

Reprinted from an article originally published in early 2002 by David H. Maister, as the Enron scandal was unfolding, and still very relevant to today's debates. Any way you look at it, the audit business cannot continue much longer as it is. If years of "clean" audits are no guarantee that billions of dollars of previously reported profits are, in fact, illusory, then what value does an audit actually provide?
Practice Management

Communicating Pay Changes: Suggestions For 2003

By, Pat Zingheim and Jay Schuster http://www.paypeopleright.comWhen you think of it, your organization’s pay program is really a powerful communicator of values and directions to your employees. How many times have you heard people say, "You get what you pay for"?
Practice Management

Preventing Your Firm's 'Enron' - Part 1of 4

By Gary D. Zeune, CPA

Motivating & Retaining Tax Preparers

By, Charles E. McCabe After you have invested considerable time and money recruiting and training tax preparers, you must now determine how to make sure those valuable employees are productive and get them to remain loyal to your firm. Retention of tax preparers is essential to maintain client relationships and keep recruiting and training costs in line. Losing an experienced tax preparer almost always results in significant costs to your firm. The keys to employee satisfaction and retention are founded on strong leadership and sound management practices.
Technology

Updating The Auditors Toolkit

by Roman Kepczyk, President, InfoTech Partners North AmericaMany firms are already in the process of transitioning their audit processes to the “less paper” or digital environment. They have invested significantly in their auditing and document container applications as well as in their training to maximize productivity. To further optimize this investment, it is imperative that CPA firms also update the tools that auditors carry into the field. Below are five considerations for updating your Auditor’s Toolkit.
Practice Management

Ideas to Improve The Quality of Your Firm

By Nancy BlodgettHere are some helpful ways to improve the quality of your firm. Adjust Your Attitude Be open to new ideas! Make time for quality improvement. Don’t manage by fear. Help people feel secure in their jobs.Don’t let the statement: "we’ve always done it this way," keep the firm from trying new approaches to problem-solving. Change the "Us vs. Them" culture of management and staff by adopting quality principles and methods.
Community News

The Value of Trust, A Clients Perspective

By, Joe Heller, The Strategy SamuraiOne of the most challenging, if not the most difficult piece of the business development puzzle in a sale is - Trust. Trust today is truly the pivotal point of building a successful business relationship. Trust is rarely tied to a product or service but it is facilitated by the person interacting with the customer. Why is this important? Because everything depends on trust and in this day and age, trust is difficult to come by.

Twelve Mistakes Professional Service Providers Make in Marketing

Excerpted from: How to Master the Art of Marketing Professional Services, by Allan S. Boress, CPA, CFE Since 1980, we've observed the mistakes of thousands of professionals in marketing themselves and their practices.If you can avoid these errors, your marketing effectiveness will improve dramatically.Mistake #1: BEING PASSIVE.It's a fact: the great majority of professional service providers and consultants ignore marketing altogether. They're too busy "getting the work out" to invest time, thought or (heaven forbid) money into marketing.

Tips to Strengthen Your Reputation as an Accountant

By Robert G. Epstein In a profession suddenly surrounded by bad press, work on safeguarding your own professional image.In recent months, accountants across the country have felt the repercussions of Big 5 accounting firm Andersen's struggle with the collapse of energy company Enron. The accounting industry is focusing on rebuilding its reputation with the public, but it's also crucial that every professional do the same. Here, we offer five tips that can help.Talk to Your Clients. It doesn't matter if your clients are large or small.
Community News

Sun Still Shines on Main Street For America’s CPAs

By Rich Walker, CPA When Forbes magazine runs a review of the best places to do prison time in the United States, you might think that the accounting industry’s public image is at an all-time low, that accountants are suddenly perceived as the bad boys (and girls) of the business world. After all, many Americans today are afraid to open their 401k account statements, thanks to the trillion plus dollars of investor equity that has evaporated in the wake of high-profile accounting scandals at the likes of Enron, Worldcom and Tyco.

How to Effectively Delegate Work And Responsibilities

Effective delegation will not only give you more time to work on your area of expertise, but you will also give others in your firm the opportunity to learn new skills and achieve their goals. Delegation helps people grow underneath you in an organization and thus pushes you even higher in management. It provides you with more time, and you will be able to take on higher priority projects. Delegate whole pieces or entire job pieces rather than simply tasks and activities.
Technology

COMDEX Gadget Recap

By Roman H. Kepczyk, CPA, CITPInfoTech Partners North America, Inc. walked the floors of COMDEX and attended a variety of panel discussions to bring you first hand experience in regards to the tools and technologies slated to hit the market in the next year. Amongst the strongest trends were: tablet computing, security, wireless technology, and a changing of the PDA guard. In addition, we have featured some of the goofiest techs and tools to show you that the concept of “medicated creativity” may still be around.
Practice

Tax Season Opportunities For Improving Efficiency

By, Tom DavisAs another tax season approaches, CPA firms should spend some time reviewing their current processes for preparing tax returns. Tax preparation is one of the success stories for CPA firm technology implementation. There is no question that returns are prepared faster today than they were two decades ago. However, for most firms there is still some substantial opportunities for improving the tax preparation process. Standardize Review - If there is an area of the tax preparation process that has lagged behind other areas, it is the review of the return.
Community News

Positioning Your Business To Attract More Clients For The Most Profit

By, Joe Heller, The Strategy SamuraiToday's challenge economy has capsized a lot of businesses, sinking a few more before the economy's ebb and flow stabilizes and business can regain their footing. As such, an organization must choose its sales leadership with great consideration to grow profits and build long-term revenue. This is one of the most turbulent years contracting profits and revenues, causing a paralysis for business after nearly a decade of year over year growth.
Technology

Tips on How to Protect Your Identity

Despite all of the modern technologies, stealing someone's identity may be easier than you ever imagined. Using a stolen check of deposit slip, blank or filled out, a stolen credit card or social security number, may be all a criminal needs to steal your identity. What is identity fraud? It is when a criminal uses pieces of information that belong to another person and assumes that person's identity and takes over their financial accounts.

Creating Your Ideal Career

By, Keith Rosen Do you love your job? Are you maximizing the career path that you're currently traveling on? Are you ready to attract your dream career; one that's aligned with your passions, strengths and talents? Do you have a strategy to easily transition from one career to the next with the least amount of risk or worry? Do you have a passion that you'd like to express in your career? The fact is, over 80% of all people in the workplace are not truly happy or satisfied with their career.

Tips To Topple Procrastination

By Karen Susman, President Karen Susman and AssociatesWe procrastinate for several reasons. We dread the action to be taken. We don’t have the information, authority or support to complete the action. We are perfectionists who can’t start a project because we might not do it perfectly. Perhaps we are addicted to the adrenaline rush of doing things last minute. Some procrastinators feel proud that they can do a good job in a small amount of time.

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