CPA - Accounting
Firm Marketing Newsletter:
Practice management & setting goals
In this issue,
we take up the challenging subject of practice management. Setting
goals is a vital part of achieving objective.
I hope you
find this slightly unorthodox article interesting and useful!
management and setting goals
of setting goals can be quite UPSETTING for anyone who has ever
failed to achieve a set goal... so I guess that means every living
being who's ever tried to achieve anything, really.
Thus, you can
guess what reception well-intended and helpful advice often receives.
here's another one telling me what I should do..." can spring to mind
easily to anyone.
And true enough,
nobody should be telling you what to do with YOUR practice and
you ever thought WHY setting goals can be so unpleasant?
indulge me and I'll tell you a story from my own life.
This is from
some 10 years back when I developed myr first-ever version of
a marketing system for accountants. I was quite a cocky marketing
executive, creative director... so I thought it would be easy.
and presented it to the client with gusto... but when the client
put it to use...
blasted thing DIDN'T WORK.
I was quite
upset, naturally, I had set my sights to solving this problem
my client claimed was unsolvable... and here it appeared to be
Well, it took
some to-and-fro'ing and a lot of definitely caffeinated coffee,
but finally I could not accept failure.
I stuck with
my goal but now I defined it far more closely. Also, having burned
my fingers once, I was absolutely determined NOT to get egg on
my face AGAIN.
So I harnessed
the full resources of my marketing agency to this project, putting
everything else aside.
I decided to
do a wide market research survey and ask business owners what
they thought about accounting services and firms.
they want from accounting if anything was available? What irritated
them about accounting firms and accountants?
How did they
SEE these services, what was the value they received, which areas
of their business would they WANT help with whether or not it
was available from accountants... and a whole host of other things.
So, we did
our research and created a system and started testing it again.
And IT WOULD
I thought I
would burst a blood vessel...
owners were definitely interested.
Yes, they would
start discussing with us.
But then, all
of a sudden out of nowhere the prospects would
do a runner, backing off fast as you'd ever seen anyone run!
just STOP in the middle of an interview and, out of nowhere,
say "I'm not really interested... we're fully satisfied
with our current accountant..." and end the phone conversation.
I was FURIOUS.
I tried reasoning and used persuasion.
I trained and
retrained the interviewers, drilled them in every bit of the
script and interview, replaced them and hired new ones... and
I tried every
possible trick known in marketing and sales... and came up empty-handed.
I became apathetic about it. Soon I was convinced that it was
indeed impossible just like so many accounting professionals
had told me.
As a result,
I actually FORGOT about it. In fact, it STOPPED
EXISTING for me completely.
It just wasn't
there anymore... and as long as I believed it was factually impossible
to devise a working system for acquiring new prospective clients
for an accounting firm, the problem was NOT a problem any longer.
inevitable," embracing that it could NOT be done at all
became "the solution."
My set goal
wasn't possible to achieve so...
management: Failed goal and missing knowledge
So a few weeks
passed and I thought I had put this painful failure behind me.
Until one day
it came back to bite me, just like these things always do, right?
A member of
my team rushed in, bringing all the interview forms, all excited:
"Harry, I think I know why business owners don't want
to change their accountant..."
I almost killed
the guy where he stood.
Boy, did I
DON'T WANT TO KNOW ABOUT THIS THIS IS HISTORY!"
I screamed at the poor fellow!
this clever man was brave enough to just stand there and let
me vent my spleen. He understood it was just all that disappointment
coming out I had SO blamed myself for failing that the
simplest mentioning of this goal brought back the frustration
and feeling of inadequacy that I had suffered during
He just stood
there until I was finally out of breath, and then said something
that I'll remember for the rest of my life:
don't blame yourself for it, it's nobody's fault.
didn't fail you just didn't REACH the goal yet... and
you didn't really even have a chance BECAUSE we didn't HAVE this
fundamental piece of information..."
gave me a huge relief.
First I realized
that I had indeed been blaming myself... and that this emotional
charge itself was the only thing that stopped me keeping on trying
to overcome the problems which lay across the path to achieving
NOTHING can stop you if you just KEEP AT IT... only YOU can stop
And you do
so only if you accept that it's impossible and blame yourself
for the failure.
Only YOU have
the power needed to stop YOU.
that my "failure" only APPEARED so overwhelming because
of one single MISSING datum.
how it is in life.
goal you have problems achieving MUST have SOME datum
one or more missing. Something has to be unknown and once
you find it, the problem will become instantly solvable.
why acquiring knowledge about the factors influencing the marketing
of accounting services can make a huge difference. The knowledge
will open doors you thought were welded shut and it can bring
about huge relief as well.
marketing the missing datum
So, I guess
you'll want to know what that missing datum was that open the
door for the only tested and proven accountancy marketing system
on this planet?
What we ran into in the testing phase of our tailored accounting
service marketing system was this:
The vast majority
of prospective clients will automatically REJECT the idea of
changing accountants and you have to know this and know
how to handle it just as automatically... after which 95 percent
will CONTINUE with you!
Now, if you're
interested to hear more about why prospects will almost always
tell you that they DON'T want to change accountants (when they
actually DO), read our web site article "How to keep your
prospect from deciding NO?"
Well, we did
solve the mystery and went on to win many victories thereafter,
drawing from this experience and sticking to our goal whatever
problems came our way. And while I can't boast that I never fall
for the same again, it is true that this realisation has helped
me quite a bit in my professional life.
management: Turning ideas into reality
cleverly and sticking to them can make a huge difference in anyone's
of setting goals is this:
man-made creation on Earth was FIRST envisioned by some individual.
It was first
an IDEA with a GOAL to make it a reality.
new clients is a MENTAL action, really.
You have to
create that TARGET and those STEPS with which to reach your GOAL
and divide it evenly so that EVERY DAY you forward it a little.
How do you
eat an elephant? - Piece by piece!
of the old joke applies to ANYTHING.
Even the greatest
feats of human kind were achieved by SMALL STEPS taken OFTEN
It is a general
misconception that to create magnificent results one need perform
It only requires
the setting of a GOAL and then devising a workable plan on how
to take small steps toward it often enough, preferably every
way is to make your goal into a set of little steps turned into
a routine performed EVERY DAY.
Little by little,
you'll achieve a bit more, reach a bit farther on your road to
achieving your goal. Kept up stubbornly and routinely, those
baby steps will conquer you a kingdom that may well exceed your
original goal eventually.
much at first. A few weeks on your way, you start noticing SOME
results. But it expands and escalates by its own dynamic and
soon the improvement will be visible to everyone.
In a few months,
the results will absolutely AMAZE you.
So, ask yourself...
what could you REALLY achieve with your practice?
you achieve if you did small steps every day?
If this intrigues
you, read our web site article "Missing ingredients in a achieving goals
for your practice"
and you might find out!
Have a successful
week my friend and believe in your own abilities and power!
HDK Consultants U.S.A. Inc.
PMB 211, 411 Cleveland
Clearwater, FL 33755
Phone (727) 474 1206
Calls from outside USA: +1 727 474 1206