Monday, August 16th, 2021

A Strong Foundation

“In order to achieve great results, you first need to do the deep inner work to build a solid foundation that can support your success.” – Chris McClure

Building a strong foundation, personally, is very important. It will be the guiding light that supports your success and leads you to even greater heights. As mentioned in the quote above, you have to do deep inner work. “Learning your trade” is one way you build a strong, personal foundation as a CPA. In addition to work experience, reading is critical to building a strong personal foundation. Read everything you can. Read business books, of course, but also read for pleasure. You can often find meaningful inspiration from reading fiction.

This same theory applies to your busy accounting firm. As an owner or leader, you let yourself get so busy that the firm just molds itself around you. You might even be so busy that you let your culture form on its own. That could be dangerous.

For 2020 and 2021, you have been busy, busy, busy. You reacted quickly to build a remote work environment to serve clients and to simply get you through the pandemic. During these times, it hasn’t mattered if the foundation was solid or shaky, you had to get the work done and you did. 

Hopefully, now that 2021 is evolving, I hope you will take some time to really contemplate the foundation of your firm. Your work processes and procedures make up the foundation of your firm. You must be prepared to inform current staff and new staff “How we do it here.” You need to have high expectations and then set the best example so that your culture reflects your beliefs.

Perhaps you had some well-developed processes but they all went by the wayside during the previous hectic months. Refocus. Seek input from your people and your clients. Shore up your foundation so you are prepared to move forward into the new normal.

Foundational pieces of an accounting firm, in addition to how your complete engagements and handle workflow, are: HR policies, internal accounting (billing and collection, monthly firm financial statements, etc.), technology processes, onboarding,  training, and marketing/sales activities.

Remember, from the quote above, “In order to achieve great results, you first need to do the deep inner work to build a solid foundation.”

  • "The foundation stones for a balanced success are honesty, character, integrity, faith, love and loyalty."
  • Zig Ziglar

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