Discounting as a Pricing Strategy: A 100 Year Old Story

October 1st, 2016

I’m inviting you to Boston MA 1891. In that year Edward and Lincoln Filene took over the management of their father’s retail store called Filenes. At the time it was quite a successful business that specialized in women’s fashions and accessories but the two brothers built it into one of the world’s leading retail companies by implementing a non-traditional business model. Read more…

Managing Working Capital Is Key to Growth and Survival: Hard & Costly Lessons

September 1st, 2016

In this post I want to share a story with you. It arises from a chance conversation with a member who is working with a client who has an inventory management challenge which came on the back of an article another friend of mine sent me about a report on the failure of the Dick Smith retail group in Australia. Read more…

Structural Change in the US CPA Industry – Small Firm Challenges

August 1st, 2016

 

Because industry structure plays a major part in determining the way in which competition plays out in an industry it’s useful to take a look at how structure changes over time due to forces coming from outside the industry (e.g. regulatory changes, technology impacts) as well as shifts in the way firms within the industry respond to those forces, innovate and compete. Read more…

So you want better clients

July 4th, 2016

“Explain how I can attract and retain better quality clients” was one of the responses from 92% of the people who attended a webinar I presented last year in which I asked the following question: what are the top 3 questions you’d like me to answer in the book I’m writing on practice development? Read more…

The theater of service has been around for a long time

June 20th, 2016

I’ve been reading a biography on the Wright Brothers that describes in minute detail the hugely difficult process they went through to create an airplane. One of the side notes that caught my attention was a reference Read more…

Good on you Google!

May 16th, 2016

When I was writing my earlier post on financial literacy I was going to comment of the payday loan industry and the obscene interest rates (which can easily exceed 1,000%) they charge people who are short of cash and have to live from Read more…

Financial literacy raises its head again

May 11th, 2016

How much better our society would be if everyone did what is right. I choose not to watch the news much because it’s so depressing but I made an exception last night and, as predicted, it was depressing. So much so that I feel compelled to share Read more…

The Why and the How to Measure Customer Lifetime Value

May 6th, 2016

They–the nameless and faceless people who make predictions about everything from the weather to the stock market–say it costs 6 times more to acquire a customer than it does to retain an existing customer. Interestingly, the literature contains references to acquisition to retention cost ratios ranging from 3:1 to 30:1. Quite frankly, I don’t know if the 6:1 metric is an urban myth or a thoroughly researched observation but I do believe Read more…

How you can get better clients

April 26th, 2016

Yesterday I had a conversation with one of our clients who asked: “how can I get better clients?” He believed the problem he had was a marketing challenge. Read more…

The most productive years of your life

March 6th, 2016

Not so long ago I received an email from a guy who used to work for me in which he said “my resume looks good but I haven’t really found my sweet spot in the past couple of years …. you realize at 40 that the likelihood of changing industries or starting a game elsewhere is pretty unlikely so I’ll stick with the accounting industry for the next couple of years for bread-and-butter income and see where to go from there.”

I wrote a fairly lengthy response to his email that I believe would be of interest to anyone who Read more…