Cal­en­dar for the New Year

Accounting Today - - Editor’sdesk -

To cre­ate at least a sense of or­der in the vast, un­charted wilds of 2019, we of­fer this an­nual set of to-do items, one for each month on your blank cal­en­dars. Think of them as a sam­pler of seeds of var­i­ous kinds of progress, from the per­sonal to the pro­fes­sional, and from the mi­nor to the ma­jor.

Jan­uary: Look back to last year and fig­ure out how many times you met in per­son with each of the top 10 per­cent of your clients. Then aim to add at least one more meet­ing with each of them this year — one that’s out­side your reg­u­lar work­flows, and is fo­cused pri­mar­ily on get­ting to know them, their needs and their in­dus­try bet­ter.

Fe­bru­ary: Pick a date no later than March 31 (but hope­fully ear­lier), and tell your tax clients that if they don’t have their ma­te­ri­als in by then, they’re au­to­mat­i­cally go­ing on ex­ten­sion. Then stick to it.

March: It’s tax sea­son, so we’ll go easy for two months. First, do a quick sur­vey of your staff to find out three things: what soft­ware so­lu­tions or apps each one is com­fort­able with, which so­cial me­dia plat­forms they use (if any) and how many fol­low­ers they have, and fi­nally, what lan­guages they speak.

April: Google your firm’s name and your own, and see what peo­ple are say­ing about you. Are there any re­views of your ser­vices, or links to your firm? Note that the worst pos­si­ble re­sult is not that peo­ple are say­ing bad things about you — but that they’re not talk­ing about you at all.

May: Spend some time with your part­ners fig­ur­ing out ex­actly how much you want to grow over the next 12 months, and then match that against your pipe­line of prospects to make sure the size of those po­ten­tial en­gage­ments will yield the growth you want. (You do have a for­mal pipe­line of prospects, right?)

June: Del­e­gate some­thing — doesn’t mat­ter what, as long as you stop do­ing some­thing that’s below your pay grade. And if you’re a sole prac­ti­tioner or don’t have any­one to del­e­gate things to, find some soft­ware that will do it for you.

July: Spend an hour each week this month think­ing where you’d like your­self and your firm to be in 10 years, then iden­ti­fy­ing peo­ple who are there al­ready, and then fig­ur­ing out what they did to get where you want to be.

Au­gust: Ar­range a meet­ing with four or five peo­ple who are in a sim­i­lar pro­fes­sional sit­u­a­tion as your­self — whether that’s fel­low Staff 1s or griz­zled part­ners skirt­ing re­tire­ment — but who don’t work where you do. Have lunch or cof­fee or drinks as a fo­rum to share prob­lems, con­cerns, strate­gies and so­lu­tions. See if they’ll meet up next month, too.

Septem­ber: Check your firm’s giv­ing and its char­i­ta­ble ac­tiv­i­ties; are they serv­ing you well? Is there a way to de­ploy the same ef­forts and re­sources in a smaller range of ar­eas, to mag­nify your im­pact? Or bet­ter yet, to do that, and to fo­cus them more strate­gi­cally on ar­eas that touch the firm’s in­ter­ests?

Oc­to­ber: Men­tally pre­pare for a mi­nor dis­as­ter, one that just cuts ev­ery­one off from your of­fice. Can all your peo­ple still work? Do you have con­tact lists to be able to reach them? Do you have a re­cip­ro­cal agree­ment with an­other firm so you can use their space?

Novem­ber: Do in-depth re­search to de­ter­mine whether and how blockchain and/or AI will af­fect not you, but one of your clients’ in­dus­tries.

De­cem­ber: As a hol­i­day gift to your firm (and your­self), fully close your of­fice be­tween Christ­mas and New Year’s.

with the strong­est rev­enue in­crease in the Europe, Mid­dle East and Africa re­gion, where it was up 17 per­cent, fol­lowed by the Amer­i­cas with a 7.8 per­cent in­crease, and Asia-pa­cific, up 6.6 per­cent.

FASB an­nounced that the 2019 GAAP

Fi­nan­cial Re­port­ing Tax­on­omy and the 2019 SEC Re­port­ing Tax­on­omy were avail­able. Both tax­onomies are ex­pected to be ac­cepted as fi­nal by the SEC in early 2019.

Mark Wein­berger, the global chair­man

and CEO of Ernst & Young, an­nounced that he plans to step down July 1, 2019, af­ter six years run­ning EY’S global net­work. Dur­ing his ten­ure, EY’S an­nual com­pound rev­enue growth rate was 8.5 per­cent world­wide. No suc­ces­sor has yet been named by EY.

Stan Mork, pres­i­dent of the In­for­ma­tion

Tech­nol­ogy Al­liance, an­nounced plans to re­tire at the end of next Au­gust. Mork has been pres­i­dent of the group for the past five and a half years. The ITA is cur­rently look­ing for a new leader to suc­ceed Mork, with the goal of hav­ing some­one in place by next Septem­ber.

Ac­count­ing To­day is com­pil­ing its an­nual

lists of the Top 100 Firms and Re­gional Lead­ers. If your firm should be con­sid­ered for ei­ther list, or for more in­for­ma­tion, email Ac­to­[email protected]­me­

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