Deeper Weekend 2014

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  • Greg Kyte
    Greg Kyte
  • Jason Blumer
    Jason Blumer
  • Jon Lokhorst
    Jon Lokhorst
  • Melinda Guillemette
    Melinda Guillemette
  • Scott Kregel
    Scott Kregel
Jason BlumerI keep a keen eye on how our profession is changing. The change in our profession really affects our Thriveal Network and it’s members so I’m very interested in it’s change. One story I’m hearing a lot is how larger firms are buying smaller regional firms. More seasoned practitioners are ready to retire, and it seems they aren’t finding the younger partners eager to take over the firm (especially when the seasoned partner stays around to micromanage them). If you want to get your cash out, then just sell to a larger firm. Makes sense.


But one thing we are not hearing in the news is the growth, enjoyment, profitability, and freedom that comes from running your own firm. Communities like Thriveal are becoming the place where smaller firm entrepreneurs can find a community fighting the same battles they are, and winning! Thriveal firm owners are growing, caring, maturing, and fighting to be profitable. And they are doing it. Creative, entrepreneurial firm owners have decidedly shed the large firm mentality, and have exchanged it for the creative, entrepreneurial lifestyle of building firms around their lives, instead of building their lives around their firms. But the news doesn’t talk about this, because it’s not very interesting. The lifestyle firm owner is committed to changing lives, one client at a time… and that does not usually make the news.
CPA firm, Personal Growth

Greg Kyte 2Last month, I saw something that torqued my brain while I was driving to Cinnabon. Why was I headed to Cinnabon? Great question, Inspector General. I needed a four-pack to realize my lifelong dream of eating several Cinnabon Classic Rolls in my underpants during a movie marathon.


The day was lining up nicely for dream fulfillment. I had the house to myself for most of the day, so I wouldn’t have to share my cinnamon rolls because screw that. I procured the movies This Is Where I Leave You, While We’re Young, and The Family Man because I didn’t just want to eat cinnamon rolls in my underpants, I wanted to cry while eating cinnamon rolls in my underpants. And on that particular day, my mindset was just right: I felt inclined to actively reach for my dreams while simultaneously feeling comfortable with the prospect of type two diabetes. Read more

Other Thoughts
REFM -  Adrian Photo Square - CATOBThe world is a wild and wooly place. Grappling order out of chaos, or introducing chaos into order, is a messy business. Which is why neatness is not the aim of business, even though we may sometimes consider it the aim of accounting.


In our efforts to come to terms with our reality, mental models can be very helpful. The concept of business as a ship, navigating uncharted waters, in search of undiscovered lands. Or that of climbing a mountain, catching glimpses of the peak, pressing on, but enjoying the journey. Or as we like talk about in Thriveal, cliff-jumping, blowing stuff up, and lab experiments on our way to making a new firm. These can help give us the clarity and impetus to act because we have a way to understand our movements in the broader story.


Conversely, mental models can also be very harmful. The idea of time as money. That monetary profits are the sole purpose of business. That perfection of the system is the goal (thus people become cogs in the machine). That leaders are all-knowing and inerrant. These are among the models that can increase our friction as they under-equip us to deal with the realities we face.

Read more

Cliff Jumpers, CPA firm

Jason BlumerHierarchical models of management in professional accounting firms all over the world are being challenged by new ways to build a business. It seems new business models (based on hearing every voice on the team), or focusing on results (and nothing else) are becoming more and more popular as the younger generations begin running the world. It seems some of these methods are hell bent on eliminating management, whether management is needed or not. Is it?

What is a business model, anyway? For that answer, let’s turn to the guru and author of Business Model Generation, Alex Osterwalder. In this book, Osterwalder defines a business model as “the rationale of how an organization creates, delivers, and captures value.” Basically, an accounting firm’s business model explains why they sell what they do, how they price for it, and how what they sell transforms their clients. According to Osterwalder, you need a cool chart, building blocks, and some markers to get it done. Business model creation is currently a fad, growing more and more popular every day. I guess it’s our search for why working at a lame firm sucks. But do we need a new business model? Read more

Business, Leadership, ROWE, Strategy

Greg Kyte 2To celebrate the Fourth of July, I went to a Salt Lake Bees baseball game with a bunch of my comedian friends. Here’s a pro tip: If you take your kids to a baseball game, try to not sit near a group of comedians. I’m just saying that when we got there, there was a family with children sitting in front of us and another sitting behind us, and after Andy Gold explained under what circumstances he would and would not hook up with a transsexual, there were no families with children sitting in front of us or behind us.


Now I’m not much of a sports guy, especially not a baseball guy. I went to the game to hang out with friends and to watch the postgame fireworks show. Baseball just happened to be going on in the periphery of my Independence Day celebration. But we had decent seats for the game that I wasn’t interested in, and our tickets cost $17 each. Read more


REFM -  Adrian Photo Square - CATOBThis post is adapted from a presentation I gave at Xerocon Denver 2015. In it, I talked about the progression our economy has made from agrarian, to industrial, to service, to knowledge, to what I believe is here in some industries, and now surfacing in the accounting industry — the creative economy. See this link if you’d like to read the full text.

If you look at our nation’s history, you’ll notice the progression from survival (agrarian economy), to possessions (industrial economy), to freed up time (services economy), to intellectual pursuits (knowledge economy). Some of you may recognize the parallel to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. I suggest we as a society, and as an economy, are moving our way up that hierarchy. Read more

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