Practice news

Practice Management

How to Manage Change in Your Organization Effectively

by The Change Management GroupA generation has grown up since the scientist and novelist C.P. Snow wrote that, until this century, social change was "so slow that it would pass unnoticed in one person's lifetime. That is no longer so. The rate of change has increased so much that our imagination can't keep up." Two of the most critical elements of leadership are the introduction and management of change. Many leaders have little or no training in the process.
Community News

Why Can't CPAs Get Traction with New Services?

By, Gale Crosley, CPA and Consultant Not so long ago, the business of an accounting firm was as predictable as men's business attire. Tax preparation and audits were about as far as it went. Unfortunately, as firms have attempted to branch out into an array of related services, their experiences have been hit or miss. More often than not, the reason is that they are unfamiliar with some of the fundamentals in bringing a new service to market, and often incorrectly pattern their efforts after bringing products to market.
Practice

Successful Business Alliances Built on Nine Key Elements

ENSR International and its key clients have developed continuous improvement programs that virtually ensure a mutually successful business relationship. Using the ENSR business alliance model, clients have succeeded in reducing their overall business and environmental project costs with no compromise on quality."In fact, our alliances have achieved better program performance while saving our client money", says Michael Beck, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing.
Education & Careers

Outsourcing to India Grows While Legislation Aims to Apply Brakes

The trend towards outsourcing accounting work to India added another brick to its foundation this week, with the announcement of the launch of a new U.S. based company to assist with the transactions.Accountants in India (AII) is the brainchild ofaccounting profession veterans Wayne Harding (formerly with AICPA's CPA2Biz) and KC Truby (Bridge 21). The outsourcing matchmaker was launched Thursday to help lower costs for U.S. accounting firms by hiring full-time accounting professionals in India.
Practice Management

Partnership Ranks Reduced by 30 at BDO Seidman, LLP

Four months after a management shakeup at Chicago-based accounting firm BDO Seidman LLP, about 30 of 280 partners have been let go.The reductions in the tax, audit and consulting business lines follow a restructuring in which five board directors were replaced and Chief Executive Denis M. Field took an indefinite leave of absence.Spokesman Jerry Walsh told the Chicago Tribune that the firm decides every year whether changes should be made in its partnership ranks. "These decisions can be related to economics, performance or a change in demand in a particular service area.
Practice Management

Agility Displaces Flexibility According to New Leadership Survey

Forget flexibility.
Practice Management

Don't Fire Your 'C' Clients, What Were You Thinking?

By Gale Crosley, CPA and ConsultantOnce in a while I cannot help playing contrarian. But I only do so when going against the grain is my conviction, not just for the sake of taking the other side! In my consulting practice, clients' frequently express a desire to "fire their C clients." I, on the contrary, suggest another approach. Fundamentally, I agree with the premise that "up leveling" the quality of a firm's clients "up levels" overall margin. I question, however, whether getting rid of lesser performing clients is a means to that end.
Practice

ICMA Announces Enhancements to CMA Certification Program

The Institute of Certified Management Accountants (ICMA) Board of Regents announced this week several enhancements to the CMA and CFM certification programs, effective beginning July 1, 2004, reflecting an on-going commitment to ensure the CMA and CFM programs remain at the leading edge of the managerial finance and accounting professional’s business environment.Program enhancements include:The content of the CMA examinations has been reorganized and updated to reflect the variety of relevant business skills and abilities that a managerial finance or accounting professional mus
Practice

Leveraging Tax Season Discussions to Nurture Relationships

By: Terri M. Sommella, President, Sommella Market StrategiesThis time of year, partners spend many hours a day talking to clients, prospects and referral sources. Did you know that busy season discussions can be leveraged to enhance your effectiveness as an advisor and nurture existing relationships? By incorporating a few open-ended questions into busy season conversations, you can elevate the value of the dialog. Open-ended questions usually begin with newspaper reporter's questions: Who, what, when, where, and why.
Education & Careers

Selling on the Inside: Attitude and Aptitude

By, Troy WaughBecoming an insider and selling to owners, board members and top management takes a unique combination of both attitude and aptitude. An attitude that you, as a businessperson, have the expertise and stature to converse with these top officers is crucial. But attitude is not enough. With a proper sense of self-worth you can start the conversation, but it takes real know-how to hold the attention of top officers.Attitude
A&A

IRS, Treasury to Shut Down S Corporation ESOP Abuses

This week, the Treasury Department and the IRS issued a ruling to shut down abusive transactions involving "S corporation ESOPs." The ruling makes these "listed transactions" for tax-shelter disclosure purposes.An employee stock ownership plan, or "ESOP," is a type of retirement plan that invests primarily in employer stock. Congress has allowed an "S corporation" to be owned by an ESOP, but only if the ESOP gives rank-and-file employees a meaningful stake in the S corporation.
Practice Management

Tips for Small Businesses to Protect Assets This Tax Season

Increased federal and state scrutiny of tax records in 2003 and budget deficits signal changes ahead for the recordkeeping practices of America's small businesses, according to Fiducial, an international provider of professional business and financial services. Fiducial says small businesses must pay close attention to recordkeeping this year, as the IRS steps up its auditing and enforcement efforts to reduce tax fraud and do its part to offset large budget deficits.
Practice Management

Brand Reputation Outranks Financial Performance as Measure of Success

Corporate reputation is a more important measure of success than stock market performance, profitability, and return on investment, according to a survey of some of the world's leading CEOs and organization leaders. Only the quality of products and services edged out reputation as the leading measure of corporate success.The World Economic Forum sent a written survey in December to all 1,500 delegates to the 34th Forum currently underway in Davos, Switzerland.
Practice Management

Leverage Up The Value Ladder

By, Troy A. Waugh, CPA MBA
Practice Management

How to Avoid Getting Burned by Document Forgery

An increasingly common form of fraud involves forging signatures on checks, wills, business forms, property deeds and other important documents.
Practice

KPMG Makes Management Changes After Recent Tax Shelter Probe

On Monday, KPMG's Chairman and Chief Executive Eugene D. O'Kelly announced that several management changes were being made in the firm's leadership structure. This announcement comes at a time when the IRS is investigating KPMG as a promoter of potentially abusive tax shelters that cost the U.S. Treasury $1.4 billion. According to a GAO report, tax shelter activities cost the IRS between $11 billion and $15 billion each year between 1993 and 1999.
Practice Management

Are Your Documentation Ducks In A Row?

This free report lays out the do's and don'ts of creating, maintaining, and retaining the forms you work with every day, from both a legal and practical perspective.Every company is responsible for filing and recording hundreds of documents required by federal and state laws.
Tax

Financial Planning Too Often Hung Out to Dry

Oil changes, vacations take priority over portfolio planning, says Schwab survey.Taking the car in for service ranks higher on the "to-do" list of American investors as they prepare for 2004 than meeting with their financial advisor, according to a new survey released this week by Charles Schwab & Co., Inc."This survey is interesting because it confirms that most investors still need to take their finances much more seriously," said Rande Spiegelman, vice president of financial planning, Schwab Center for Investment Research.
Practice Management

Ten Things to Know About Bringing Home the Bacon in Your Firm

After all the business development buzzwords and tactics (web sites, brochures, seminars, articles, speeches, coaching, motivating, compensating and on and on) have dulled to a whisper, a few simple things remain. It boils down to a few fundamentals to understand about life as a public accountant, and a few outcomes that will result. Here are ten everyday realities about being a professional in a CPA firm:Know that being a good accountant means a lot more than understanding the technicalities.
A&A

America's New Breed of Millionaire: How to Find and Sell to Them

By Kerry L. Johnson, MBA, PH.D. He probably wears a $50 watch. You won't see him on a yacht. But you would find him in his office commonly until 7:00 p.m. (even on Saturdays). He is more interested in his local rotary club than the polo matches.She uses her bank more for making investments than for borrowing. She would have been Robin Leach's last choice for a spot on "Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous." She is more interested in her family and coupon clipping than in champagne and caviar dreams. Sound pretty average, right?

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