Chris Ragain, Managing Director of Ragain Financial and Founder of LedgerSync, built his own firm and wealth management practice from the ground up. He realized at a young age he needed to start his own firm, and you'll hear exactly how he built his firm and wealth management practice. In this episode of the Growing Your Firm Podcast, David Cristello and Chris Ragain discuss:
- How to niche down and build referral partners
- How defining a niche helped Chris transform his marketing dollars into real ROI
- How he's been able to grow his team and scale his firm
- Why LedgerSync was created and how it reduces costly admin time
- How Chris was able to add 6 (and soon to be) 7 figure profit centers to his firm through wealth management services
- and much more... if you're an ambitious accountant ready to grow your firm, tune in!
Additional Links: LedgerSync: (a software that will automatically code every transaction including checks, deposits, electronic payments, payroll transactions, even if they are handwritten!) Starting His Firm At 24: Chris Ragain started his work at Arthur Andersen and KPMG. But, at age 24, he realized it was time to start his own firm. However, his big firm experience doing audit didn't translate well for working with individuals and businesses. It was a bumpy start and thus Chris lived off of ramen noodles for awhile. That’s what he had to do as he figured out how to attack the marketplace. Starting off, he realized most individuals price shopped his services. His tax work was a commodity. In order to make $300,000, he would have to do a 1,000 tax returns...alone. That wasn’t going to fly. Then he realized what he needed to do (after much trial-and-error). Work with just small business owners --- not individuals. If an individual wanted a return done, he would refer them out. Clients value a specialist. He found out those he referred out eventually referred him business. The problem ---> All he had to do first was find these small business owners. Chris started with mailings and brochures. Those flopped. He followed that up with using the internet (when it first started gaining traction). Slowly, word spread about his specialty in small businesses grew. Like I mentioned, he saw organic referrals from being known as a specialist. Nowadays, more than ever, a specialist is wanted. First Hiring Mistakes Again, Chris learned everything you hear in this podcast from simply stumbling and picking himself up. The same goes for his first hires. It took a few years for Chris to make his first hires, and there’s a reason. Once you decide to become a manager, there’s no going back. Chris says his first mistake was simply hiring to fill a trouble spot. He didn’t think about the career path of the employee. What he found was these type of “stop gap” employees ended up leaving for bigger firms and higher pay. When you don’t offer a career path, you don’t know: how to train them, which clients they should work on, or type of work they should be doing. That all changed with his newer hires. He builds out a “path” for each employee.
- Every employee works on one side of the firm and then transitions to another if they wish
- Every employee knows how much they’ll make in the next 5 years if they hit milestones