What one thing is the key to the future success of your accounting firm?
Don't you think - actually it makes sense to get an outsider's perspective?
To answer that question, here's an outsider who absolutely loves the profession having spent the last six years working with accountants.
Today I'm joined by Zoe Lacey Cooper, the director head of events at Accountex, the largest UK exhibition for the accounting profession.
In this podcast Zoe shares her insights and experiences that point to implementation as the one key thing.
"I'm a big of a fan of pricing because I think it's a quick learn.
You can grasp it, implement it and feel the benefits quickly. Just go to a single pricing session, just 45 minutes and you can go away and you can immediately change your whole pricing structure, transforming the profitability of your business."
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TRANSCRIPT - unedited
[00:00:00] Paul Shrimpling: [00:00:00] Welcome to the humanized, the numbers podcast, series leaders, managers, and owners of ambitious accounting firms, sharing insights, successes, and issues that will challenge you and connect you and your firm to the ways and means of transforming your firms results.
[00:00:22] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:00:22] It is interesting because the accountants are, I think the main change is probably implementation because they come to Accountex.
[00:00:30] They have, they are not scared of investing. They, they will spend money on technology, they will do it. However, the problem is, is implementation that a lot of the time, I don't think they actually implement it properly.
[00:00:42] Paul Shrimpling: [00:00:42] What one thing is the key to the future success of your accounting firm. Don't you think actually it makes sense to get an outsider's perspective to that question.
[00:00:53] An outsider who absolutely loves the profession and has spent the last six years working with the profession on [00:01:00] this podcast, we're joined by Zoe Lacey Cooper, the director head of Accountex the largest UK exhibition for the accounting profession, sharing her insight in what that one key is. And Zoe points to.
[00:01:12] Implementation has been that key today. I'm joined by Zoe Lacy Cooper from Accountex. So rather than me give some fantastic Fabry, Rooney introductions. Zoe, do you want to give us your backstory and your role and how that's evolved at accountants please?
[00:01:29] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:01:29] My fiber Rooney explanation. Okay. So, um, I have been, um, for those that don't know me, I have been, um, The event director on Accountex, which is the well, hope people know what Accountex is.
[00:01:44] I'm sure the DS is the exhibition that we run. Yeah. In London, the big one, um, with, um, and I've been running that for six years now. Uh, but I have actually have been in exhibitions and events my whole career. So just over 20 years now, [00:02:00] um, I have worked on various different industry sectors from nutraceuticals to.
[00:02:05] We've got food and everything else. And, um, yeah, the last six years I've spent, um, kind of understanding and actually having funny, some love for the accounting profession.
[00:02:16] Paul Shrimpling: [00:02:16] Love for the accounting profession. Yeah. Yeah.
[00:02:22] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:02:22] I love pool
[00:02:25] Paul Shrimpling: [00:02:25] indeed, indeed. So, yes. Um, uh, it's an interesting phrase, a love for the accounting profession, even though accountants haven't technically been your customer, have they.
[00:02:36] Of Accountex your customers, your exhibitors.
[00:02:39] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:02:39] Yeah. We have two customers. Actually. We have a two-pronged customer base and actually in terms of our vendors who exhibit, but also those are actually the visitors and those visitors are our customers to us. So those customers are essentially accountants if they be in business or in practice.
[00:02:54] So I would say, yeah, they're kind of our customers too, actually.
[00:02:58] Paul Shrimpling: [00:02:58] Yeah, I buy that. I [00:03:00] buy that. So, um, w w w we're talking, uh, towards the end of your time with Accountex and you're about to move on. So what I'm really interested in is the, the, the, your perspective on the profession, even though actually moving on and you're going to stay within the profession.
[00:03:17] Um, yeah. What, um, and I still want to extract what you're talking about in terms of loving the accounting profession. Uh, when, what, how, how do you describe the profession to people that, you know, friends loved ones when, who have no, no idea what the accounting profession is like, how, how would you describe the profession?
[00:03:35] Do you
[00:03:35] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:03:35] want to hear my little speech on that? Quite literally, because they all just think there's just people who calculate this. I mean, literally that's how they perceive the profession. And when I do actually turn around to them and say is quite simply as that actually, um, It's quite an exceptional profession.
[00:03:52] It's not about calculators. It's about tech. It's about artificial intelligence. It's about progression. Um, I worked with some of the, you know, [00:04:00] practice owners of some of the best entrepreneurs I've met. Um, they're not all like that, but there, there are people who have transformed their businesses or their practices and done some exceptional things with them.
[00:04:12] And like I said, I've worked in 10 different industries and I've not seen that kind of, um, The adapting, the embracing the change. And I just don't think accounters realize how good they are, Paul. I really don't think they do.
[00:04:29] Paul Shrimpling: [00:04:29] And I agree wholeheartedly with that, that, that statement B uh, I've invested in 20 years of my life in the profession as well, uh, in, in terms of helping them, uh, in all sorts of different ways.
[00:04:41] But I I'm, I'm curious. Accountants are exceptional because they're not just about calculators. They're about tech and AI, but what about the human side of things like, uh, Zoe, you know, I've got a podcast called humanize the numbers. So accountants are the novel's experts. Yes. Technology is involved, but actually at the bottom of the base and that [00:05:00] the foundation of all of the.
[00:05:01] Good work that they do is the people they work with, both their team members and their customers, their clients. Um, w what's your perspective on, and, and the love that you feel towards the accountants? Not just about technology. Cause I know you love the tech stuff. What about the humor? The humanity of it as well?
[00:05:16] What, what they
[00:05:18] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:05:18] are the secret. There are the secret superheroes of all of the businesses that I've running today. Um, and again, I'm sounding very like. Dramatic and about it, or, you know, superheroes and I love accounting, but let's be real here. You know, these, these accountants are advising, helping and assisting businesses day to day and they don't just get the calculator out.
[00:05:40] There's so much other stuff that goes on about it and we know what they do, they know what they do. Um, but they are, they are the kind of the hidden superheroes or of, of, and will be with the economy particularly going forward as well. Um, and, and that's kind of how I would see it from the, from the human perspective,
[00:05:56] Paul Shrimpling: [00:05:56] for sure.
[00:05:57] Yeah. Yeah. So [00:06:00] you you're in the exhibition world as well as in the accountancy world. And you working with other people within your organization who is serving or the customer bases, not accountants with their exhibition offer. How has, and so far on the podcast series, I've avoided any, any sort of debate and discussion around the pandemic and working from home and all of that.
[00:06:20] But I'm curious to hear how. The accountancy profession, who from your perspective have adapted to that compared with other industries. And I'd like you to pull out if you can specific industries to compare and contrast, because I'd like to get a real story about that compare and contrast so that accountants can go, Oh, actually, maybe we're not so bad.
[00:06:42] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:06:42] And the funny thing is they're not like I'll give you a prime example. Company is a global company. I've been there nine years and exceptional company. What they've done to develop events in, in, in industries that are very varied. Um, but you know what? We only entered the cloud this time. Last [00:07:00] year, I had never used Microsoft teams until this time last year, we.
[00:07:07] The level of technology knowledge that even the events industry habit itself, I mean, I'm involved in our events association, I'm involved in, um, one of our tech round table teams. So I do lots of interviews about the technology in the events sector. Um, and you know, and I, and I'm on these meetings with the, the MDs of the biggest event companies globally.
[00:07:27] And they don't really know, and they do know cause they're learning and they have to, but, you know, um, Uh, very, um, a very experienced, um, lady called Ruth Carter, who I treat as my mentor. She's headed up one of the largest exhibition companies in the, in the country. And she said to me, you know, we are event professionals.
[00:07:46] We run live events. We do really well, but just because we're really good at doing events doesn't mean we're going to be good at doing virtual events. And she said like, just cause you're just cause you're a sports person doesn't mean a football or can play. You know, good [00:08:00] basketball. And I thought it was really interesting because she's saying is, you know, we've had to adapt as an industry.
[00:08:06] We've had to do it, but I mean, what I'm trying to do is compare like the industries that I also have access to and look at what the accounting profession is doing. You know, like we'll find out, for example, he's a practice has, um, they don't even have holiday allocation. They all, I mean, some of them work remotely.
[00:08:22] I mean, he was doing this kind of stuff back in 2016, I think from memory. Um, whereas now I was just reading some news on a counter web about, you know, like all now, now people might be thinking about working remotely and it's like, yeah, Pink color pink doing this for years. And it's nothing along with those that have those, that haven't, but it is really interesting to watch my events industry go, Ooh, this is a something for us to consider.
[00:08:46] And it's, it's very bizarre because the accounting profession would have been doing this for years. The accounting profession has been on the cloud for years. They've adopted technology for years when I, I went into a board room meeting and I [00:09:00] mentioned the word app stack. And everyone looked at me plainly and went what?
[00:09:04] And I said, Oh yeah, I was using Slack the other day, great platform. They were like, well, what, what? I mean, this is incredible stuff that comes naturally to me, but in the industry I serve and the other industries we serve, it's just not used or heard of. So you guys are more progressive. Those accounting people, guys, and girls are more progressive than they actually think they are.
[00:09:25] Paul Shrimpling: [00:09:25] But they don't see the other industries. Like you see them, do they say,
[00:09:30] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:09:30] yeah, love is probably a little bit accelerated because actually they don't realize. How good they actually
[00:09:36] Paul Shrimpling: [00:09:36] are. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. Well, I mean, pull out, say we'll find out and Will's been on this podcast series and so no, well, reasonably well as well.
[00:09:46] Uh, but you pull out, uh, an exceptional firm with very forward-thinking wills firm. Isn't a reflection of the whole profession, you know, there's a, there's a spectrum isn't there. So if we look broader across that spectrum of [00:10:00] the most advanced firms, like, uh, w uh, well, and Peter Jarman, and you know, all the firms of that ilk and, and compare that with, and there, if there was a bell curve, they'd be at one end of the extreme, then there's the vast majority of firms.
[00:10:14] And then there's the others at the other extreme, um, Does that really apply to the bell curve firms? You know, the vast majority of firms who aren't at the leading edge of the change in the profession, what are your thoughts on that? Are you still in love with the bell? And you're like, I gotta be careful what I'm saying.
[00:10:30] The bell curve, vast majority of firms,
[00:10:34] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:10:34] they are still, I think they're still way ahead of the curve, to be honest with you. They're still way ahead of the curve. And just in terms of the way they communicate on social media, that understanding of marketing. Uh, I mean, again, like I say, we're trying to put a broad brush over everyone and that's really hard, but I mean, just to let you know, I mean, the visitors to Accountex, um, we, we try and profile as many of them as we can.
[00:10:56] They do tend to be kind of from the small, medium or micro entities. [00:11:00] Um, And various different ages as well. I mean, we have the very broad spectrum of, um, what we would call the digital dinosaurs, um, and those progressive generations that are coming in and setting up the counter to first from that camper van in another country.
[00:11:16] Um, but we, we are catered for all of them, but th th th the fundamental. Same thing that everyone comes to context for is the technology. Um, you know, and they are all doing it. And that is still in a much more advanced than some of the other sectors that I have access to way more advanced.
[00:11:34] Paul Shrimpling: [00:11:34] Yeah. Yeah. So it's a job I've just earlier on today, ran a, a, a resilience round table with a number of firms that we've worked with, uh, to talk about how good accountants are at giving themselves a hard time, or actually given themselves a good time, eye catching themselves, doing things wrong versus catching them themselves, doing things right.
[00:11:52] And yeah. Uh, everyone to, uh, a woman and man accepted that knowledge. That actually we're really good at seeing what we're not doing. Well, we're not so good at [00:12:00] seeing what we do do well, which is to a degree, the point of getting you on this call today on this podcast today.
[00:12:05] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:12:05] So the, the other thing I was thinking about also the other industry sectors I've said off just with accounting, I've, I've never experienced the amount of, or level of help out there in terms of the amount of mentoring, the gurus, the people that can.
[00:12:22] Come in and actually transform them. I've heard the case study. I mean, there's lots of mixed views on, you know, should I be advised on practice management by someone who's not an accountant loads of interesting subjects around if that's the best thing or not, but that doesn't matter. These people are all out there.
[00:12:39] If they're an accountant or not, who know how to run. Yeah. Accounting businesses who can advise on things like sales and marketing and management and running a business. I don't, I've never experienced that in the other industries I've served and that's quite, quite incredible radio. That's the other thing that while I, I, I find it really good because these accountants have the help on [00:13:00] their doorstep and they have the help, all these people like you, Paul, and all these other people offering these free webinars.
[00:13:06] Hmm, helping them help their business. And that's quite rare in other industries. And again, that's kind of more maybe perhaps a turnaround in thanks maybe from the accountants that they need to kind of realize that there's actually, they've got all this amazing content and advice and help on their doorsteps and it's all there free or there for mentoring or a cost or whatever, but it's all there.
[00:13:32] And I find that quite unique in this industry as
[00:13:34] Paul Shrimpling: [00:13:34] well. Yeah. What about the piece about accountants helping accountants out as well? Cause you know, there's, we were talking earlier before the podcast about why would anybody actually go and have a conversation with a competitor and then work out how to work with each other, for each, each other's benefit, but you know, well, it's a good
[00:13:50] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:13:50] debate.
[00:13:50] Isn't it poll? I mean, we do have people who feel quite strongly about it. You know, these, they call them the outsiders don't they. You know, but they all have a [00:14:00] place. Everyone has a place. And, you know, I have outside to help in my industry. You know, I have a mentor who helps me, um, in terms of kind of running Accountex as a business.
[00:14:08] And she advises me on what to do as a business, but, you know, um, I, I just, I just think it's, um, it depends on kind of what you want and how you want to help and how you see your business going. But, um, you know, each to their own pool, I
[00:14:22] Paul Shrimpling: [00:14:22] would say course, and there's, and there's also, isn't there there's the, um, as much as what if I hear you, right.
[00:14:28] What you're saying is there's a, a cultural difference to the accountancy profession in terms of there's help available there's to you as a firm, whether you want to avail yourself of that, that's entirely up to you. Yeah, whether you want to get involved in a group, which might have, and we had a call this morning and I've got two firms in the same time, sharing information with each other.
[00:14:50] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:14:50] This does not happen in other ex this has not happened in other industries, Paul, like people don't realize that this does not happen. There might be a few industries that do don't get me wrong, [00:15:00] but I just don't see it in any other industries. It just does it, it just
[00:15:04] Paul Shrimpling: [00:15:04] doesn't happen. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. So there's the, so what we're saying is a campus, a good at, um, uh, embracing and adopting technology.
[00:15:13] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:15:13] again, that's another argument in itself, isn't it?
[00:15:15] Paul Shrimpling: [00:15:15] We're going to go there. I'm going to just see what's what's coming. So we've got the technology, the technology is there. Whether again, the firm has to make a decision, whether they choose to embrace that and avail themselves and transform the firms around the use of tech and, and it's an undeniable trend.
[00:15:29] There's just, you know, it's not going away, is it? It's a, there's going to be more and more of it. So there's the embracing. The technology is there and accountants are embracing it more than other industries are, so they should be tapping patting themselves on the back. Um, the help's there and some firms are in availing themselves of the help so that, you know, it's, if they want to change the, can.
[00:15:48] You know, th th th it's not like the don't, they have to look very far to find it. Okay. Um, what about, um, I just want to turn the subject to where's this going? What, what, what do you see as being [00:16:00] the future of the profession as a, as a, uh, non accountant who served the profession for six plus years? What, and, and being close to all the technology providers, because there'd been, you know, um, Thank you for stands and you've interacted with a lot of them.
[00:16:15] Um, what's coming. What, what, what, where's the, where's the profession going, do you think?
[00:16:20] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:16:20] Well, in terms of the technical terms with the technology, then we'll kind of buying each other up at the moment. So the way, if the tech Wells, that that's how it goes. And, um, I think, um, it is interesting because the accountants are, I think the main change is probably implementation because they come to Accountex.
[00:16:40] They have, they are not scared of investing. They, they will spend money on technology. They will do it. However, The problem is, is implementation that a lot of the time, I don't think they actually implement it properly. Um, and I feel that the, um, with the print and economic not covering it much, but I do believe that this has showed that they've, they're starting to push that through a [00:17:00] little bit faster.
[00:17:01] And so their confidence of technology is growing. And I mean, we, I put in a question a couple of years ago on our registration format context and said, I'm in terms of tech, are you tech cautious? Curious or savvy. Um, you can take what you want from that, because you know, it's an individual question that you ask and no one wants to be tech cautious, do they?
[00:17:21] Snow is going to tick that. Um, but it does make you feel July's every part of the journey that everyone's on at the moment and what's happening. What's going to be happening at the moment is that that cautious doesn't exist anymore. That's been knocked off the scale because yeah. They've had no choice, but what is happening now is that they're starting to be more curious and they're probably a little bit more confident to start looking at, you know, what app stacks are out there.
[00:17:46] How does it implement it together? Let's maybe change, that's changed the software. Let's do it a little bit different. Um, I'm not, I'm not a software expert. And as I say, um, you know, I just want exhibitions, but this is kind of what I've been hearing in the last kind of year [00:18:00] about. That that key implementation element is starting to happen.
[00:18:03] And from that brings in this whole curious element, um, Which is kind of changing the channel a little bit.
[00:18:10] Paul Shrimpling: [00:18:10] Okay. I want going to take issue with that thing. Um, when I, when I talked to, um, larger firms with larger teams, I re I don't just sense. I see the cautiousness around the technology, not with everyone in the firm.
[00:18:27] There's, you know, cause you look at a bigger firm and there's some tech savvy, some tech curious, and there's some tech cautiousness. But if we, if we, if we go to the leadership table, we go look, this technology is moving so fast. So we might make the wrong decision in terms of the piece of software we opt to use, because we might have to change it again in a year.
[00:18:45] How would you, what w w what guidance or advice, and now I'm putting you in the hot seat there, would you give to a firm who's been reticent about making a decision and being. Overly overly cautious is putting, uh, uh, my
[00:18:57] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:18:57] impression it's actually pull you by, right? The [00:19:00] cautious element is there because I'm talking about writing off the word, but you know, of course it's natural to be cautious and you are right.
[00:19:06] And that, that cautious level exists in, in different. Like I say different levels within those practices, but, um, you know, accountants are counters. They are not tech experts or why I'm not a tech expert. If I need tech help, I get someone in to do it. Um, so, you know, I think accountants again to so realize that there is help everywhere around them.
[00:19:28] And I mean, the help and support the individual software providers offer is again, on another level, I'm seeing the kind of support that they can offer. Um, And again, I'm talking very broadly here, but again, if they're going to be tech cautious, then they need to be brave and get some help, uh, cause it's and out there and it's pretty damn good.
[00:19:47] Yeah. It's all there from the software themselves to these, these gurus who can pretty much eliminate any worry in an instant, as far as I'm
[00:19:58] Paul Shrimpling: [00:19:58] concerned. Uh, but you've [00:20:00] just said the accountants need to get brave and, and get some outside help, but bravery and the accountants in the same sentence. Is that, is that right?
[00:20:07] Is that fair,
[00:20:12] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:20:12] great discussion for your next foot gospel? I think
[00:20:16] Paul Shrimpling: [00:20:16] so. You're not going to, you're not going to go with that one. I agree, you know, this is it's, it's almost as if cautiousness could be seen as a bad thing when actually, um, it has to, like you say, it's gotta be part of the decision-making process. It pays to be careful, but it also pays to be curious and, you know, the, the, the changes in inevitability that the technology is an inevitability and it has to be part of every firm's future plans.
[00:20:44] Isn't it? Um, yeah. Um, and you know, is there a bravery piece there that really has to show up or is it actually just like systematically assess the options, make a decision as opposed to avoid? Does that require bravery? I think to a degree it does book or is it [00:21:00] just have a good decision making process?
[00:21:02] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:21:02] That's probably right. You've definitely worded it much better than I have pool, but yeah, you're right. You're absolutely
[00:21:07] Paul Shrimpling: [00:21:07] right. Alright, and well done for deflecting. An awkward question. Sorry. That was all right. So we've, we've, we've talked about tech, uh, we've talked about, um, the, the, this culture of help and guidance and advice from the providers from outside influences.
[00:21:23] And we've talked about, um, the profession's future. What does the future hold for Zoe?
[00:21:30] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:21:30] For me. Well, um, for those that don't know, I'm actually moving on from Accountex. Um, the funny thing is I've been in, uh, exhibitions for 20 odd years, um, and has served the accounting profession for six years. Um, running a context, there are events, um, virtually and in life.
[00:21:46] And from there I have, I have been kind of surrounded by the most exceptional supportive. Very inspirational bunch of people. I mean, look at the books. I mean, people have people hearing, they [00:22:00] can't hear me, but I have a collection of exceptional books that, you know, then I don't just read the book. I know the people that wrote them, you know, I F I mean, that, that is an exceptional.
[00:22:10] And, um, so from there on, I am going to be here. I'm going to be working for, um, Omnipro, which is an accounting, um, training CPD. From, um, lots of technical content, um, online training, CPD, uh, primarily based in Ireland, um, and working with that, working with that business to build and collaborate with, um, everyone in the accounting ecosystem and, and that the accounting ecosystem is what I've enjoyed the most.
[00:22:41] It's not just the vendors, it's not just the visitors or the accountants, all those gurus, all those advisors. Um, it's all of them. And, um, to have the opportunity to, to work with all of them is pretty, pretty amazing. So, um, that's my new exciting role. I'm leaving behind my big, [00:23:00] large scale events world and going as one of you guys.
[00:23:04] Um, and I'll be a mere exhibitor on the Accountex floor. Um, next time. Yeah,
[00:23:10] Paul Shrimpling: [00:23:10] yeah. Yeah. Pretty good. Pretty good. So. If you're pointing to the books behind you, uh, you've made reference to the, the opportunity to embrace, change and learn from either the provider that the tech providers, uh, or from third party, you use the word gurus.
[00:23:29] All right. I'd have to refer to it as all as good news, as opposed to gurus, which I think is quite funny. Okay.
[00:23:34] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:23:34] And do you know what a lot of them hate being called gurus? Absolutely. They do. They hate being called breweries. They hate being called influences, but they are
[00:23:42] Paul Shrimpling: [00:23:42] the key to all of that. Isn't it?
[00:23:44] You know, it's challenged the status quo. I think that's part of the role. Um, and then help everyone connect with everybody, connect with the right numbers, connect them with the right tech. I think if you know, the people are out there genuinely doing that wholeheartedly, then, then it works for the firms.
[00:23:58] Um, so [00:24:00] this love affair you're having with the profession is going to continue. Yes.
[00:24:04] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:24:04] Oh, yes. I've been faithful to exhibitions.
[00:24:10] Paul Shrimpling: [00:24:10] H w Lee last piece, because you brought up the book thing and now that you know, there's about 10 books on my table here in this dozens and dozens and dozens, if not hundreds there and more back in the office.
[00:24:22] So learning has been a big part for you clearly for me. And it seems as though the profession has been pretty good at that. Um, w what, what, where do you think the key areas of learning are. That the firms that are listening to this need to focus on what, what if you were to pinpoint one or two key areas of learning based on your experience of working with virtually every tech providers or the accounting professional in your role as a director of Accountex w w what do you, what do you, where would you sign post firms to look for learning.
[00:24:54] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:24:54] I think that again, there's lots of out there there's so much access to it. I mean, you look at the [00:25:00] associations and the work that they do and the, um, the webinars, the. The social media groups, the access to books. I mean, it's everywhere.
[00:25:12] Paul Shrimpling: [00:25:12] That's the challenge, Zoe, that's the cha you know, everything's on Google.
[00:25:15] It's all. Yeah. You have to demystify what I'm looking for and what I'm looking for from someone who knows the X. The profession with your perspective, which is unique and go right now, if you're going to seek out a subject for learning over the next 12, 18 months to three years, where would you direct the profession?
[00:25:36] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:25:36] Well, I I'm a bit of a fan of the pricing element pool. Um, I have a bit of a fan of the pricing, but only because I think it's a quick learn. You can learn it really quick. Just see, just go to a single Mark Wickersham. Or Martin set or run by could just go to a single one of their sessions, just. 45 minutes [00:26:00] and you will go away and you will, you can immediately change your whole pricing structure.
[00:26:04] I remember seeing Mark pricing presentation six years ago, and I went back into the office the next day and changed all my pricing. Yeah, 45 minutes session. I mean, you don't have to spend years reading books. You don't have to spend a whole month on webinars. You don't have to do it, but go to some real key.
[00:26:23] Key webinars or, or find a subject that you think you could turn around and implement really quickly as well, because I think once you get used to implementing and getting confident doing that, you'll want to start doing it a bit more. I think pricing is probably the easiest, quickest one to do. And I I'm talking from my own internal business understanding,
[00:26:43] Paul Shrimpling: [00:26:43] uh, my experience.
[00:26:44] Cause we, we we'd done some work in this and I now refer constantly to Mark and Ron Baker and, you know, James at go proposal and the team at practice ignition and so on. There's, you know, there's tools available, there's resources available the training. So it's all, it's really quite compact area. [00:27:00] And, uh, on, uh, another podcast we had Ron Baker, uh, show up, uh, recently.
[00:27:07] Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. And, and Ron makes a statement in that, in that podcast, you know, um, nothing has a bigger impact on the bottom line profits of your firm than actually getting your pricing right. Yeah. You know, small improvement on pricing has a profound impact. So yeah, without, instead I agree with you whole heartedly let's um, and even though my conversation with Ron was focused on time sheets, you can't help, but then have a conversation about, well, how do we properly price?
[00:27:35] And that's, if I, if I go look at the changing your pricing with your existing. Customers your existing clients is quite tough because you have been using the same pricing approach. They have been experiencing the same pricing approach, but what you can do quickly and easily. And it's your point about implement quickly?
[00:27:55] You can change your pricing approach to your next new customer, because they've never [00:28:00] experienced it before and you can train yourself. You can implement quickly there. And, um, so I think. You're right. Pricing is a key component. Implementing quick is a key element. And actually, if you take boatloads two things together, you can do that with a goal proposal or a practice ignition tool, for example, and, um, and implement quickly around new prospects of customers.
[00:28:23] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:28:23] And to add onto that pool as well. I would just say like, and this isn't just accounting as well, but the subscription model is, is it a model that is now being widely used in other industry sectors that only we're waking up to it? Yeah. But it's happening now. And, and other industry sectors are realizing the impact and, um, H how good it actually is.
[00:28:42] So, yeah, that would be my little. No right or wrong. That would be my little favorite easy win.
[00:28:48] Paul Shrimpling: [00:28:48] Yeah. You'll, you'll love this. The PO Rob finishes that podcast with his commentary on the, the, the subscription world and how important is, and the fact that it's a complete game changer. [00:29:00] And then, so any from any professional services firm, nevermind in the accounting firm that misses out on actually grasping, embracing the power of that is, is going to be, you know, short chain.
[00:29:12] So, um, So I could easily push it for maybe another subject, but because pricing is so key, um, I think, um, and if we can narrow people's focus down. Cause that's the heart, the thing isn't it. In, in the world of Google and all the attack, it's like, well, where do you turn? The, the, the one thing that can have the biggest, the most profound impact from someone who's not selling accountancy, that person I use Zoe saying, look to your pricing.
[00:29:36] I think that's a really powerful insight. Uh, Zoe, thank you very much. It's been, uh, always is, you know, a joy to have a conversation with you. Uh, we in my team wish you every success at Omnipro look forward to hearing how you getting off. And, um, thank you for taking time out and sharing your insights and thoughts on your love of the accounting profession.
[00:29:55] Really appreciate it.
[00:29:56] Zoe Lacey-Cooper: [00:29:56] Thank you very much, Paul. Thank you.
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Outside perspective on accountants
A cultural difference
The future for Zoe
Learning / Pricing
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