What They Don't Teach you at Accountancy Business School

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I think all of us in business know without sales there is no business. Yet I as an accountancy trainee spent long hours learning technical accountancy and taxation areas but I was not taught how best to market and sell the services it took me years to master. Why do the professional bodies leave out this important area in their syllabus?

Is it because marketing and selling are considered to be beneath an accountant’s skills set? Have the professional bodies changed now?

At the time I was looking for a franchise, it did not surprise me to learn that people from sales and marketing background attracted much higher fees levels compared to accountants.

Marketing and sales are the skills I lack, how do I go about building those skills? They are many practice support business who for a very high fee, I am sure, will offer to provide this service. This gap in training should be covered by the professional bodies along with practice management?

It would be even better if my professional body required me learn a prescribed syllabus and then tested me on marketing, sales and practice management before awarding me a Practicing Certificate.

I am where I am now today. How do I gain marketing and sales skills specific to sell small business accountancy and taxation services? 

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What was once considered unprofessional

Until I think the 1970’s  (I’m sure someone will correct me on the date) none of the professional bodies allowed such “common” things as advertising. Accountants were expected to stick their plate up and wait for clients to find them.

Newly qualified accountants invariably took positions with established practices, so the whole idea of “marketing” was an alien concept to the profession.

Whilst training has evolved to include such vital skills as IT, marketing seems to have continued to be ignored and viewed as a skill accountants don’t need.  

 

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I think that's quite a good idea to have to do some sort of course on sales and marketing and practice management before getting your practicising certificate. At least you would have some basic notes on how to run a practice that you can always refer to.

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Hire someone who knows how

There are two ways you can go about it.

1) Networking

2) Hiring someone who has the skills to market and sell your product.

 

Firstly I'd deal with networking. It is great to network within the Accountancy profession but this will probably not give you any new clients. It may be better to have a team with a wide range of hobbies so that they can advertise your company wider.

 

Hiring someone may not seem like the best option but you can deal with it by hiring someone who is an accountant but also has the skills to market and sell and split their role.

or

You could find the hidden talents within your current team. have they ever had any sales experience? or are they simply very enthusiastic about your company?

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