Tuesday, August 27th, 2013

CPAs Tend To Complicate Things

I love quotations by famous people (and some not-so-famous people). I find them inspiring and sometimes very useful – if you heed the advice given.

One of my favorites for my CPA consulting activities and for life in general comes from Henry David Thoreau:

Our life is frittered away by detail… simplify, simplify!

What I often find as I work with public accounting firms, and the CPAs who live inside them, is their motto often seems to be:

Complicate! Complicate!

This came to mind recently as I read a series of three tweets by the highly respected author and consultant, Alan Weiss, @BentleyGTCSpeed.

  • You don’t need a business plan. You need a marketing plan.
  • Can you explain in 10 seconds why a client is improved by working with you?
  • Telling a prospect how you do things is like reading through the yard sale ads.

Inside your firm, strive to keep things simple. Don’t spend so much time formulating a 25-page strategic plan. Identify fewer initiatives and a shorter timeframe.

How’s it going with your performance feedback system? In most firms the people receiving the evaluation dread them and the people delivering the message dread them.

When you get an audience with a prospective client do you talk too much?

Keep pace with change, always be evolving and KISS (Keep It Simple Sweetheart). Today’s quote, below, is also one of my favorite ones for accountants.


  • "It is not necessary to change. Survival is not mandatory."
  • W. Edwards Deming

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