On July 25, 2017, our book “Double Your Accounting Firm: Lessons Learned on How Top Firms Grow Faster, Build Stronger Teams and Increase Profit” was released on Amazon. Hardcover copies will be available in the coming weeks. With this book, we plan to add even more value to your accounting firm besides just workflow processes.
- Page 52: Actual scripts to move clients into the more profitable fixed and value pricing model
- Page 89: Top 2 crazy good strategies to get new clients in your firm this month
- Page 136: Step-by-step process to meet and close new prospects (scripts and blueprint included)
- Page 220: Building out 6-figure profit centers this year to double your firm
The Rookie Mistake Firm Owners Make:Are you seeing more clients come signing on the dotted line, but profits remaining stagnant? It’s a common problem especially for firms making less than $50 million per year which is most firms. The answer you’d think would be to find more clients, hire more staff, and update your numbers and see what changes. It’s a dangerous treadmill that leads to burnout and unhappy employees. What’s the mistake these owners make? They work on the billable hour model Now, we’ve discussed other methods of pricing before (value pricing and fixed fee). But, today is more important than ever to bring up. As the workforce gets younger, they are looking for more freedom and less time at the office. Unfortunately, with billable hours, employees are rewarded for spending more time in their seats. There’s no reason for employees to innovate, use new technology, or do their work faster to make room for new clients.
The Mindset You Need To Start:If you’re on a billing system right now, it would be downright foolish to make a drastic switch. You must do it slowly...starting with your mindset. See, there are dozens of firms out there who charge much more than you doi. They’re doing it not from billing their time but their value. The first step is understanding and believing in the value you provide. You’re not a bookkeeper or a tax preparer anymore. You’re a business consultant helping your clients 10X their business. See how much a mindset shift this is. Because trust me, if you only look at WHAT you’re doing and not WHY it affects your client’s businesses, your employees are doing the same. We are in the information age. Every piece of information is online somewhere. Your clients know this, but don’t have the time to find the valuable intel they need. They lean on you...you can hear it in their voice.
“Hourly billing doesn’t fit the knowledge economy.” — Ron Baker, value pricing prophetYou’re worth far more than just your time. Doctors bill thousands of dollars for a few minutes of their time. Because they bring real, life-changing value. Whether you agree with the healthcare system or not, it doesn’t matter. That’s not the point. The point is you have an expertise that is valued whether you know it or not. The worst part of billable hours is how it hits your clients. They’re afraid to give you a call because they know they’re on the clock when you pick up the phone. If you’re afraid of ‘wasted time’ it’s the risk you have to take to grow a company. Large companies, like Apple, take risks spending billions to develop the next iPhone. They’re rewarded with billions.
How do I have this conversation with current clients?You’ll want to start with your most trusted clients first. Tell them you are looking at your current service offerings and there might be some extra ways you can add value for them. Also, describe how you are moving pricing models to be more efficient and get work out to them much faster. Show vulnerability that you are growing but also how it will benefit them as your client. Next, simply go through similar value-digging questions. You’ll learn more about your clients this way, plus you can ask for referrals at the end. If you’re still uncomfortable, call up your most trusted client and simply ask, “Hi Mr. Client, we are making some changes in our pricing and service offerings. I am trying out a new way to present to clients. Can I have 20 minutes of your time to try it out on you and get your feedback?” This trial conversation could lead to more sales when your client says, “I didn’t know you did that!”
- Ask yourself, do I firmly believe I’m worth more than other firms? You must have a “Yes” to this answer.
- Recognize the differences and benefits between fixed pricing and value pricing as opposed to the dreaded billable hour.
- Look at all your current service offerings and rank them by revenue. Are there profitable ones you could bundle?
- Practice the value conversation with a client and prospect.
- For your next prospect, offer at least three options to them based on the format addressed above. Judge the results and adjust