March 7, 2024

Episode 100: Steve Pipe, speaker and author

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The Story

As we approached our 100th edition of the Humanise The Numbers podcast, we found choosing someone to invite as the guest a bit challenging. But then we thought – what if we could make a global impact by having as a guest someone who could inspire you, your team and your clients to transform the numbers that really matter in your firm and across your clients’ businesses?

And that's why we brought in Mr Steve Pipe, with whom I had the great privilege of working during the first five years of my career supporting ambitious accountants. Steve speaks in a deep and meaningful way about core purpose and values, about engaging your team and about making a difference on a level that is inspiring, but challenging, and in a way that’s quite practical.

I hope you'll take time out to hear the message that Steve shares and that you’ll take some action off the back of it – this will benefit your team and the commercial results of your firm, and it could have a profound and positive impact on your clients as well. That work could then go on to have a global impact.

I hope you find this conversation as stimulating and valuable as my team and I have.

Scroll down this episode page for the contact information for Steve and for the additional, downloadable resources mentioned in this podcast.

The Solution:

When I asked people to guess how much more valuable Deloitte found that a purpose-driven business was compared to a business that wasn't, I got 10, 20, 30, 40 percent estimates. What Deloitte actually found was that they were four times as valuable.

If an accountant ever needed a reason to sit up and take notice, it’s when a purpose-driven business, as analysed by Deloitte, ends up being four times as valuable. You simply cannot ignore that bit of data and to ignore that bit of data is wilful negligence on the part of both your clients, the planet and our grandchildren.

But then we need to unpack that and work out how we tap into that, how we use that, and within that, Deloitte found all the other supporting metrics – increase in productivity, engagement and price premium. But they also found that purpose-driven businesses were able to charge on average 39.5% higher prices.





Connect with Steve

Steve Pipe can be contacted on, and his books are available free of charge at

Connect with Paul

Resources relating to this podcast:

During the podcast, Paul and Steve discuss the importance of running a purpose-driven firm, as it helps bring the rest of your firm's numbers (after profits and cash flow) into focus. Steve believes that, while anyone can write a core purpose, the important thing is to bring it to life and give it real meaning – with your team, your clients and your community. But he also believes it goes one stage further than this. If you are serious about being a purpose-driven business, you have also got to look at how you can have a global impact. If we don't tackle the global issues, they spill over into everything else.

Being successful isn’t just about the commercial side of your firm – it’s about having a deeper meaning that connects with your clients and employees and with other stakeholders.

What effect does your core purpose have on your team and clients?

If you want to discover more about the importance of leading your firm with purpose – and how you can identify that purpose and the associated values to help your team bring that purpose to life and to start to making an impact – click the button below to read the Business Breakthrough Report 'Lead with Purpose'.

Steve talks about the importance of making an impact on a global scale and how easy this can be, not only to do, but to measure.

He observes that, when something good happens in your firm, you could use that as a trigger to do something good in the world.

Steve aims to make 17 things happen every day, and so far has provided over 6 million days of help over 12 years.  He has used B1G1 to facilitate this and to measure his global impact. B1G1 will provide you with a summary, not in currency, but in the difference you have made.

Could you use the good things that happen in your business as a trigger to do good things in the world? Maybe your team could decide what those good things are?

Here is a link to the B1G1 website – you will be able to see how easy it is to make a big difference.

During the podcast, Steve shares a book that has had a big impact on him – Thinking, Fast and Slow, by Daniel Kahneman.

Kahneman found that most of us don't behave rationally and that too many decisions are made with 'fast thinking'.

Steve believes that accountants and those best-placed to help business owners think slow.

Slow thinking is about making decisions by being rational, reasoned and considered, and by using the data.

Analysing data is something accountants are very good at, allowing them to be there for their clients when it really matters.

Steve states that better data, and better analysis of that data, leads to better decisions and therefore better results.

Accountants generally are strong in this area – they just need to apply slow thinking to the right set of numbers in a client's business.

To access this book, click the button below.

Steve discusses how developing and living the core purpose of your firm can be difficult, as it deals with emotions, feelings and language away from numbers.

But you cannot be half-hearted when it comes to bringing the core purpose of your firm to life. You have to implement it and then live it.

Steve references a quote from the book Atomic Habits, by James Clear.

"You don't rise to the level of your goals, you fall to the level of your systems."

He believes it's very easy to have a Big Hairy Audacious Goal, but the only way you are going to achieve it is by embedding it into the culture of your firm with systems and systematic processes that leave nothing to chance. It has to be built in and baked into the fabric of your firm.

To access this book, click the button below.

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