In order to be able to even consider yourself an accountant, you need to get a necessary certificate. We’re talking about becoming a CPA, which is the official title that this function carries. What this does is enable the rest of your career development, lead to a number of benefits and get you prestige and respect from others within the financial sector. Keep in mind, nonetheless that becoming a CPA is just a first step on this journey of a thousand miles and here are seven additional tips you need to hear in order to advance in this career.
1. You are running a business
Being a great accountant is definitely a predisposition when it comes to succeeding in the accounting industry but this is simply not enough. You also need to become a great entrepreneur and juggle the business part of running an accounting agency. Keep in mind that in order to do so you need to remain profitable, as well as to see a positive ROI on all your investments. Also, keep in mind that you can’t expect others to trust you with their taxes if you’re not keeping your own books in order.
2. Hire some help
Once you start growing your organization, you’ll need to hire some help. For instance, you may need a personal assistant or some additional accountants so that you can accept a surplus of work. Keep in mind that managing your workforce isn’t an easy task. The simplest way to improve your efficiency here is to find the right tool to help you out. With the help of Deputy software, you can get an end-to-end management tool that will help you enhance your productivity. With a complete staff management toolkit on your side, this will become a lot easier.
3. Use new technology
The next thing you need to understand is the fact that even the clients who don’t know much about accounting might look up some of the tools that you say you’re using. You see, there are so many incredible accountants out there who do amazing work in a simple MS Excel table. There are even those who do so using a traditional pen-and-paper method. The problem with this approach lies in the fact that clients usually look for someone who’s a bit more in touch with the times. This is why you might want to consider using specialized accounting tools. Other than this, a boost to productivity and efficiency that comes from this should be a reason enough.
4. Improve your people skills
The first major mistake that new accountants make is not paying enough attention to their networking skills. While we would like to think that there’s a stellar difference in accountant skill-levels, the truth is that there’s only so much that an accountant can do for you. This means that a few skilled accountants can give you a similar type of advice and provide you with the same set of tax benefits. Where accountants differ is in their people skills (their customer-relations). The reason why people choose one type of accountants against the other is that they have a better communication/relationship with them. It really is that simple.
5. Work on your marketing
Previously, we’ve discussed the scenario where people opt for your services because they like your charisma; your personality. The truth, however, lies in the fact that unless you have great marketing, you won’t even get a chance to leave this positive impression. So, start thinking about your brand as a whole and your image as a professional accountant. This means working on your marketing and investing in it. This will allow you to attract the right type of clientele to your cause.
6. Start a blog
In order to attract customers, you need to provide them with something of value. Free advice from your field is a great way to do so and there’s no method that’s more efficient than starting a blog. This is also a way for you to show an attitude, as well as demonstrate expertise in the field. This is important because, otherwise, they would only see your prowess after hiring your services which is quite ineffective. All in all, starting a blog is a smart move, however, before doing so, you might want to learn a thing or two about content marketing.
Accounting is a wide area and what you need to understand is the fact that your clients might look for a specialist. So, pinpoint one big area of accounting (for instance, auditing or taxation) and invest as much effort as possible in order to specialize in it. What this will allow you is to appear more knowledgeable and experienced in the eyes of your audience. Naturally, this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t offer other accounting services, as well.
The very last thing you need to keep in mind is the fact that success is situational but that there are many ways in which you can increase your odds. Fortunately, with these several tips on your side, you can put your accounting career in a much better position, as well as increase your appeal to your customers. All of this benefits you in the long run.