I think most of us would agree that 2016 was a very long year. The good news is, it’s almost over, which means you should be well into planning for 2017.
Here’s an email I got from a member just this morning. We’ll keep them anonymous, for obvious reasons… but I wonder how your 2017 planning compares with theirs:
“We are still looking for that special high-end accountant but have developed a Plan B in the meantime:
- Hired a new bookkeeper so Carol* (my bookkeeping manager) can delegate most all her bookkeeping clients to free up her time to work on mid-range tax returns. Kathy** started 3 weeks ago and is already looking like she will become a very important part of our team.
- We are sending Jane*** (a part time bookkeeper and payroll clerk) through Bev Stitely’s tax class so she can assist with the low-range tax returns.
- We did an “across the board” 25% rate increase for bookkeeping, payroll, and tax services. This has already helped us to get rid of a few “D” or “C” clients. Yeah!
- We did not preschedule any tax appointments for this tax season. We are asking all clients to drop off, if possible. If they really need a tax appointment, then we will schedule an appointment in 15 minute intervals. Tax appointments will only be available on Tuesday mornings or Thursday afternoons.
- Continue training Carol**** as she is very interested in becoming the high-end accountant/tax preparer we are looking for. It may mean a couple rough tax seasons as she learns but she is definitely worth the investment.
- We put in a new VOIP phone system from Crexendo this week. This should streamline the incoming calls this season.
- We will not be promising a two week turn-around time for tax prep which is something we’ve always done. Instead the clients will just be assured their tax returns will be completed on time.
- We moved up the client “due dates” for when they have to turn their information into us. This should result in more extensions, but that’s OK with me. (Individuals need to have their information in by March 15th and businesses need to have their information in by Feb. 3rd.)
That’s all I can think of for now.”
Really? That’s plenty!
Here’s a member who tells her clients how important it is to plan to pay less tax – and she’s taking her own advice, planning to organize her office to help them do just that.
What about you? What sort of planning are you doing to make 2017 as easy and as profitable as possible?
Are you sharing those plans with your staff – and your clients, where appropriate?
Plans are great, but they’re only as good as their implementation. And implementing means communicating, early and often, how the new plans will work.
Hope you’re putting those new plans into effect – January is almost here!
*Not her real name
**Not her real name
***Not her real name
****Still not her real name