The Accounting Practice Lifecycle

For the vast majority of practitioners, the accounting profession is incredibly cyclical. Ours is a profession often characterized by a never-ending series of boom-and-bust cycles. Perhaps you have a steady stream of monthly accounting and payroll clients that provides you a “base” of revenue, but the vast majority of tax and accounting professionals (sole practitioners in particular) live a life of doing some large project for a new client, finishing that project, and then having to struggle to find the next big client.

The key to growing a successful practice is to have a steady stream of clients. Instead of living on the boom and bust cycle, or relying on tax season for 80% of your annual income, the successful accounting firm is constantly marketing to strengthen existing client relationships, get referrals, and obtain brand new clients.

Even if you have what you consider to be a successful practice, I have a few questions I’d like you to ask yourself:

  1. Am I earning my desired level of take-home income?
  2. Does my practice afford me the free time and lifestyle that I desire?
  3. Do I have a real business that could run without me, or have I created a job that I still have to show up for every single day?
  4. What is my exit strategy from or for my firm?

If you’re not making the money you’d like to be, don’t have the free time you want, and have no real exit strategy planned, then chances are you don’t have a business, you have a job. A self-employed job, perhaps, but still a job, where other people and other circumstances are your “boss”.

If you would like to transform your practice into a real business that operates systematically and successfully, regardless of your physical presence at the office, then you’re at the right place.

Transforming your practice into a business that supports your desired lifestyle is not only possible, but I personally believe is one of the most important missions in life you can undertake.