Speaking at the AccountantsDaily Business Advisory Day in Sydney, a panel of SME owners has given accountants a unique and valuable insight into their own personal view of the profession.
Eric Brown, general manager of QVS commercial interiors, indicated that his original perception of the accountant was that of a “reactive” entity.
“I thought my accountant was someone I paid reactively to what was going on; just to tidy up and put my tax returns in,” said Mr Brown, while adding that the “life-changing” decision to find a proactive accountant has done wonders for his business and his financial position.
According to Mr Brown, he was simply unaware of the avenues of expertise that his accountant could potentially provide, namely in the advisory space.
“I think what I didn’t get before, that I didn’t realise I wasn’t getting, was some sort of planning. I didn’t have anyone sitting in front of me saying ‘Eric, this where you want to go, how are you going to get there?’”
“This is how we’re going to get there; this is how I’m going to help you get there.”
Michael Field, general manager of consulting and advisory firm EvettField Partners, indicated that an accountant who develops a personal rapport with clients is well positioned to reap the benefits.
“It actually matters a lot to me that my accountant shows an active interest and the impact that has on my personal life, so that he’s co-invested in the idea of me achieving my life goals,” said Mr Field.
According to Mr Field, a proactive accountant is of the utmost importance to a small business.
“Once you find a good one, you wrap your arms around them, hold on and say 'don’t ever leave me please'. You don’t question the billing because of the value in terms of your own wealth creation and the achievement of your own goals.”
Mr Field concluded: “So if you get that right, and you get that right relationship, it actually knocks out a lot of the arguments around 'what’s this bill for and why am I getting charged this much?', because you actually see the value and it’s matched directly to what you've asked for.”