Stop trying to be more than just an accountant!
If you didn’t see last night’s apprentice caused a bit of a stir with accountants who are keen to respond that Edward isn’t representative of all accountants. Of course he isn’t. The apprentice as we know is exaggerated behaviour and makes great telly but usually there is an essence of reality there. If you didn’t catch the show you can view on iplayer here.
In this episode Edward the accountant led the team to failure. Despite his background in training by one of top 4 firms, he sat in the back of one of the Apprentice black cabs saying “He wasn’t interested in margins”.
He also went on to squeal “I’m more than just an accountant” in the boardroom.
Lord Sugar shared his views in no uncertain terms that nobody should be ashamed of being an accountant and basically Edward should have used his accounting strengths rather than pretend or strive to be something different in tasks where the accountancy strengths would surely have led them to a win.
So I’m writing this article as increasingly we get approached for telemarketing for accountants where there is additional service being offered by accountants. More commonly these are services such as web design, email marketing, IT software, Business Mentoring, Marketing services, and also Social Media advice and consulting.
The feedback that we get day in day out is that people want their accountant to be relied upon for accountancy and to be the best choice in that specifically for them.
What’s important to people is that they feel safe and reassured that they have the right accountant for them to save money, maximise profits, steer and support financial decisions, and solid compliance. They want accountants to communicate well and have a good level of customer service.
They may be vaguely interested in their accountants views on things such as software, HR, internet marketing, social media, websites etc but mostly if they want a supplier of those services they will find one that does that for a living. The main view that people share is that they do not want their accountant to be distracted from their core service as they want to trust their accountancy supplier completely to do the job.
Accountants who forget to file annual returns for clients but who can recommend brilliant pay-per-click strategies really ought to be shot!
So thanks Lord Sugar for bringing that point home. That accountants should not be ashamed of being accountants and understanding their strengths, and to be relied upon when those skills are called upon.
Edward can be quoted as saying “I don’t need to show off that I can work out margins as I’m an accountant” but really it’s not about working out margins is knowing why they are important to a business and how to use that knowledge to drive decisions. No wonder so many accountants are face-palming this morning!