Start up alone or with some support

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Mark Lee takes another look at how start-up practices can benefit from third party input to help build and grow their business.

Looking back through Any Answers on AccountingWEB I see there have been a number of requests from start-up practices seeking someone to mentor them. It is also clear that there are differing ideas as to what a mentor is and what can be expected from a mentor.

In this article I intend to explore the alternative forms of business support available to start up accountancy practices – whether through ‘mentors’ or otherwise.

Building your practice can be a lonely existence and many accountants will find...

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  • What is a mentor?
  • What about coaching?
  • Maybe co-coaching would work?
  • More formal groups
  • Other options

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About Mark Lee

Mark Lee works almost exclusively with savvy sole practitioners who want more out of their practice.  More clients, more money, more time, more satisfaction - or everything!

An accountant by profession, Mark moved away from the provision of professional advice in 2006.   He is now a professional speaker, mentor, facilitator, author and debunker.

Mark Lee is a realist and regularly debunks myths and hype related to his areas of interest and expertise.  His keynote talk for audiences of accountants is How to STAND OUT and be more than 'just another accountant'.

Mark is passionate about helping accountants generally so is a keen blogger and commentator in the accounting and tax press. He is consultant practice editor of AccountingWEB and has written hudnreds of articles here that have been viewed over a million times.

Check out how he could help you here:

Mark stopped giving tax advice himself despite being a past Chairman of the Chartered Accountants’ Tax Faculty. He is however Chairman of the Tax Advice Network - the UK's highest ranked lead generation website for tax advisers and accountants. The network also publishes a weekly practical tax update for accountants in general practice and full tax support, on demand too.  You can also use it as a lead generation resource for local people seeking tax advice from an accountant.

Mark has extensive network reach through his blogs, talks, social media activity, articles and his regular newsletters that go to thousands of accountants every week.


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29th Nov 2013 23:42

I'd like to mentor/support any start up practices in east mids
Having joined a successful, but stagnant, practice at the age of 28 as a director I have gained a lot of experience that is relevant to start up practices.

My remit when I joined was to help grow the practice, and I successfully helped them to increase fees by 19% after my first year which was a challenge as it was in 2008/09 exactly the same time as the recession started. This created opportunities but also challenges.

I don't expect to be paid, unless of course I'm able to add significant value and profits/cash - then I wouldn't mind a pint or too!

Anyway! If anyone had started, or is thinking or starting, an accountancy practice in the East Midlands - only chartered or equivalent - then look at my comments on other issues and if you think my advice would benefit you then please PM me.

I'm still in practice and will be for another 12-17 years (depending on how much money I can make in that period, wether I still enjoy it, etc) so this is current knowledge that I'm willing to share.

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30th Apr 2014 16:21

Private message sent, I hope ive not missed the boat on this one




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17th Jul 2014 11:40

Advice on gathering clients


I am thinking of starting my own practice. I have managed a practice before but for the last 6 years I have been in industry. The long hours and hefty commute is taking a toll on me and I am ready to follow my dream.

Any advice on how to gather small and medium size business clients?



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