Recently I was presenting to a room full of partners and directors of Accountancy Practices, most of whom referred to themselves on their websites as ProActive Accountants.
I posted the question to them, what exactly do they mean by ProActive?
I was met by stunned silence. Eventually, a few suggestions were made but no-one was clear and yet, so many advertise that that’s what they are.
What does your website say?
Here’s my take on what being Pro-Active really means…
• It means making preliminary recommendations without being requested to do so. Really ProActive Accountants are doing this monthly and quarterly and picking up the phones to their clients and presenting these opportunities
• It has to be relevant to the client otherwise, what’s the point?
• It has to be valuable to them so that they thank you and appreciate you bringing the recommendation to them.
• It has to be free – in the first instance.
What do I mean by free in the first instance? What I mean is, take time to present a recommendation but there’s no requirement to conduct rigorous investigations at that stage, simply that it might be prudent and timely for your client to have investigations or work carried out. Tell them what they should do, not what they should buy from you.
Let me provide an example. Let’s say a client of your is about ready to incorporate. Rather than say the following….“We recommend you incorporate” or “We recommend that you pay us to work out how much you could save by incorporating”
“I have taken a preliminary look and I think now might be a good time to incorporate your business – since our initial estimate is that it could save you £2,000 a year, and £50,000 between now and when you retire. So I recommend you take a good look at all the pros and cons.”
This way, you’ve been proactive, spotted and presented an opportunity and you’re recommending they incorporate. Your next question can simply be, would you like some help with that?
If and when they say yes then you can present the fee to them for investigating the pros and cons.
To help AVN Members be truly proactive and regularly, they have access to many resources and tools they can use to help them spot opportunities quickly, easily and at junior level by simply punching in a few details.
If you’d like to understand a little more about what these simply get in touch with me on firstname.lastname@example.org.