My Week: Busy Fool
Hello folks. I failed to stop myself from indulging in YouTube/Trump.
Thanks to a box set of The West Wing complete series - Presidential edition of course and YouTube, I am better-informed and also gripped on American politics as compared to UK politics. I cannot see a sex scandal brewing when it comes to our PM. That would get me interested! PM has enough on her plate with trying to work out a deal on Brexit.
It was a stressful week. at the same time, we are getting through our workload. By the end of next week, all the March 2017 statutory accounts will be completed. Further, we are in control of tax returns season. It is very much doable without working the extra hours.
I do not think we would be humans, if I say, the tax returns season will not be stressful. It is always stressful. It is good stress. In the sense that it improves our productivity.
As I mentioned in one of the earlier blogs, we have now reached a fee bank that meets all the expenses and provides me an okayish income that I can live on. The question I was pondering on over the week, is whether not to take on any more:
- One-off clients: For example, clients who just want a tax return completed and then they are off, not be seen again since they are either leaving the country or going into employment. Time and effort involved do not make this a viable way forward. Also, they would be further headaches down the line if they end up with a Compliance letter from HMRC.
- Not to take on work below a minimum fee level say £600+VAT. Even £600 is a low figure. My heart and brain is telling me it should be higher -maybe £1000? I will give this area further thought.
- I have identified clients who are currently not viable for the practice. So far, I approached one client and talked about increasing fees. After I had outlined my reasons, she sounded okay with the increase. I have no doubt, other will NOT be so amenable.
On some of the clients, we are busy fools. That is down to yours truly. Unlike Trump's excuses, the buck stops with me. You have to bear in mind, I did not have a practice background when I started. Also, I had an employee mindset. It meant, I made decisions that have been costly and not good for the practice.
With experience, I now have a practice owner mindset and I also have practice experience. It is time for a gear shift. 2018 is that time.
Will it work?
We are living in a highly competitive world. As practice owners, we are NOT the only ones blessed with the forces of a competitive environment.
Here is my take. If I take on clients who will make us nothing but busy fools, it is just not worth carrying on. Further, it is demotivating to work in this way. It is best to move on to something else. The worst for me would be becoming an employee. It is better than being a busy fool.
As you know. the other side of the equation is/are efficencies in productivity. The way the work is done. Works need to be completed, to the required standards, in the shortest time possible. That comes from taking on people who have a similar mindset and more importantly are motivated to improving the productivity of the practice.
If I choose the busy fool route, I will not have the time to make changes to improve the productivity of the practice.
Dare I say it, I have a sense that they are many practice owners who are busy fools. Whether they would admit and make changes to this fact, is an entirely different matter and it will never be a subject of My Week. I do not give advice unless requested.
I have put my head down on my studies. It is so difficult to find the time, sit down and study. At the same time, I am learning so much. It is and will be a direct benefit to FT Practice Ltd.
We are nearly at the end of exhausting 2017. I am looking forward NOT having to respond to client emails over the holiday period.