HOW You Are Inspirational (Part 2)

Steve Pipe
Posted by Steve Pipe on Sep 7, 2021 12:39:17 PM

In the first and second articles in this series we saw two of the four types of services accountants and bookkeepers are using to make a profound difference. In this article we look at the other two – and show you how to capitalise on them.

Specialist services

Specialist services are the unusual technical and commercial oddments that crop up from time to time. For example, in the inspirational stories we studied for the book they materialised in the form of things as diverse as understanding obscure tax legislation and personality profiling.

The good news, however, is that most accountants can largely ignore these. They are probably best addressed on a just-in-time basis should the need for them ever arise. At which time, of course, the best approach may simply be to bring in a suitable third party expert to help out.

Humanitarian services

Humanitarian services are what really set accountants apart.

They involve doing things which, at first sight, do not appear to be commercially “necessary”. For example, in our case studies they included:

  • Going the extra mile for team members
  • Giving time and support to local good causes
  • Fund raising
  • Establishing charities and other not-for-profit initiatives
  • Joining a movement such as to connect with like-minded businesses and support people in need around the world
  • Encouraging clients to also do these things

Interestingly, though, on closer inspection, these humanitarian services are commercially sensible too. In particular they help accountants:

  • Win new clients – by differentiating themselves as genuinely socially responsible
  • Improve client loyalty – by proving that they really care
  • Improve productivity – by giving their teams a greater sense of purpose and worth
  • Improve service – by inspiring and motivating their people to go the extra mile In addition, many accountants say that it brings them real joy to know that they have made life better for other people.

Clients love accountants who do these things

Here are what some of the clients we talked to said about the impact their accountants have had:

  • “I wanted to make my family proud of me. And thanks to my accountant, they really are.”
  • “Having a really good accountant has been instrumental in turning our dreams into reality.”
  • “They really have changed my life.”
  • “There’s a renewed sense of energy and passion now, and that’s all down to the commitment and support of our accountant.”
  • “I never thought I would hear myself say this, but the more I think about it the more I realise it is true… my accountant has changed my life.”

The 5 simple steps to making it all happen

The evidence is crystal clear. Accountants can make a profound difference.

And the really good news is that making a difference like this allows you to win high-quality new clients, charge much higher fees and enjoy much higher profits. The five keys to enjoying all of those benefits are as follows:

1. Believe in yourselves, because the evidence proves that as accountants you can make a profound difference. 

2. Focus your entire practice on providing services that make more of a difference, because it is the right thing to do, will make life better for you and others, and will make the world a better place. And equip yourselves with the tools, knowledge and skills you need to communicate and deliver those service.

3. Start collecting stories about how you are making a difference. 

4. Grow your reputation, client base and team by telling others true stories about the difference you are making by doing what you do. Sharing those stories is your most powerful form of marketing. 

5. Improve your profits and wealth by pricing in a way that reflects and allows you to share in the difference you are making. Once you are providing a lot of value to clients in these ways, you will be able to charge much higher prices to reflect that much higher value. 

It’s just an excuse… 

The final article in the serialisation will uncover (and help you to overcome) the stupidity that stops some accountants serving their clients and themselves brilliantly well.

This is the third article in an updated abridged serialisation of Steve Pipe’s ground-breaking book ‘The world’s most inspiring accountants’.

Steve Pipe FCA is a leading researcher – you can download his latest book Our time to RISE for free here.

Topics: Practice Growth


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