Does your Miami Accountant understand your financial situation?
I recommended that Miami Accountant conduct a 30-minute financial checkup annually for all clients. A Miami Accountant by simply sitting down with clients and reviewing financial statements, you can build a bridge from the past to the future. This session is not time consuming, and it is highly productive. At a minimum, it will deepen the relationships you have with clients. It may also generate additional fees for the practice — clients will learn that you are more than Miami Accountant, tax preparer Miami/compliance professional.
Basic things that Miami Accountant should do:
1. Explain the financial statements in plain and easy-to-understand language. The worst thing to do is turn these sessions into one-way communication where clients are lectured and may not understand the issues being discussed. Numbers from a balance sheet or income statement don’t mean anything to the average and highly intelligent business client. Break things down and make sense of the financial numbers for clients. This point is vital.
2. The Miami Accountant should develop some understanding of margin management. Most businesspeople don’t understand the importance of margins. In many businesses, either the gross margin or the net margin drives the business most. (Gross margin is sales less cost of sales divided by sales. Net margin is net profit divided by sales). Many good business people think that the key to success is increasing sales volume. They don’t have an appreciation for how volume affects both cash and profit. Many times, increases in sales may decrease profits or cash or both.
3. Point out some very simple areas the business person can work on. In my experience, the vast majority of businesses are driven by three or four key pieces of data. If these are managed well, the business does well. If they are not managed well, the business does not do well. It is important to try to identify these before the session.
The sessions should be informal and brief. If the session goes well, you will be viewed as a true strategic partner by your client — as a friend and ally. If it does not go well, then at least the client will know you care. In all likelihood, your clients will be surprised and impressed that you took the time to help them. In my experience, you will also generate additional fees from these sessions since almost all of these types of sessions will lead to further questions, challenges, and work.