What do you do over and over again that is taking away your time for growth?
Management and Operations
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When I ask CPAs about their biggest operational challenge, their answers are remarkably similar. Nearly all have to do with how to deliver less-than-stellar news involving employee performance.
One of my friends who leads a small CPA firm expressed regret about hiring a bright young man who just couldn’t seem to get the work done on time. When I asked the managing partner how he handled the issue, he said, “Well, I gave him a very harsh review at the end of the year.” “How’d he take it?”, I asked. “Not well. He seemed upset and confused, and yet still nothing has changed.”
What’s wrong with this picture? Read more
I was a middle school math teacher for eight long years. I finally quit teaching because I wanted to find a career where I could actually make a difference in the lives of others. That, plus I couldn’t stand those bastards.
As a teacher I worked with some amazing people. One of my fellow teachers taught a speech and drama class. One of the projects she assigned her students was to film a music video. Very cool. One group of students wanted to film their video on the roof of the school. Also very cool. She let them do it. Very cool? And she let them do it unsupervised. WTF? Read more
Most clients pay us from January to December each year. We draft their fees monthly. Sweet cash flow! So every December, Julie and I go through client renewals with our clients. Though the renewal season is only a month, the process seems to take forever. Who will renew? Who will leave? Will someone step up their agreement with us? Will next year be short of this year in terms of monthly revenue? Yay, they doubled their contract! Wait, no they went back to what they had last year. Ugh. Honestly, it’s painful to walk through. For us and our team (since our technical team is paid a percentage of our revenue). But every year. Every year we make it through. We come out on the other side, and we learn something new, and we become a new firm from the process. We walk through scary places together, and we are a stronger team because of the trenches we found ourselves in. We’ve done our annual renewals like this for many years, and it’s honestly hard every year. Read more
I suck at sports.
In college, my roommate recruited me to be on an intramural softball team. During practice, I got hit in the face by a ground ball. That’s how bad I suck. A softball that was rolling on the ground, broke the laws of nature, jumped up, and hit me in the face … just to make sure that I understood that the Sport of Softball knows that I suck.
Before becoming a CPA I was a middle school math teacher. Every year, on the last day of school, the teachers would play against the eighth-grade basketball team. In the 70-year history of the school, the teachers never lost. Until I played. That was the first and only year I played, and that was the first and only year the teachers lost.¹ Read more