Editor's Note: This is the third in a series of excerpts from Hitendra R. Patil's book, "Accountaneur: The Entrepreneurial Accountant."
How many clients do you have? Now consider this: There are hundreds and thousands of people (who you are not serving, yet) who are asking you a question, “Excuse me! May I rent your brain?”
Why are you not able to get and service more clients?
The Four Pillars of Success of Future Firms
In my book, "Accountaneur: The Entrepreneurial Accountant," I have explained in detail the following “Four Pillars of Success of Future Firms:”
- An accounting service firm's success requires an effective commercialization strategy.
- A firm structure should be designed to protect the interests of its clients.
- Develop services that improve the lives of people.
- As an investor, place potentially risky long-term bets on your team.
For the purpose of this post, let me touch upon the gist of how your intellectual property is remaining un-rented.
What do your clients really want?
It may sound like a cliché, but the fact is many accountants don't recognize the real wants and needs of their clients.
Example: You delivered a monthly financial statement to your client. What’s the impact of that document on your client’s life? Are you helping her achieve personal goals by sending a financial statement? Would you want to uncover the actionable intelligence from that financial statement so your client uses that insight to better her chances of achieving her personal goals?
It’s not easy to appreciate the true impact you (can) make. In the daily chorus, producing the “deliverables” takes priority. But essentially, your clients want “intelligence from those deliverables.”
Effectively, they are paying for renting your brain. What you have, they don’t have. And there's no case for them to acquire the knowledge and expertise you have. They are not looking to become accountants themselves. Their core expertise is different. But they absolutely need your core expertise – on rent – to help them navigate their business.
As an accountant, you don’t tell your clients just the what (you need to reduce your overhead). You tell them the why (look, you're making no money because your overhead is high). You tell them the why, so that they can think of different choices and make different decisions to change the destiny of their businesses, and hence, their lives. And you can figure out the whys because your brain has that powerful intellectual property.
In other words, you have the power to improve the lives of people.
Don’t let your intellectual property go un-rented.
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Hitendra R. Patil is COO of Pransform Inc., and author of "Accountaneur: The Entrepreneurial Accountant."