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Thinking of Starting an Accountancy or Bookkeeping Business?

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Thinking of Starting an Accountancy or Bookkeeping Business?
By Jason Dormer

You have decided that an accountancy or bookkeeping business is for you. You will be your own boss, make your own decisions, make a heap of cash and work less hours.

The reality, of course, can often be somewhat different!

There are many factors to consider when starting a business and not everyone is cut out to work for themselves.

For example, as an employee, you are used to a support network around you. PC problems? Phone IT. New clients? That's for the Marketing Department. Unpaid bills? Credit Control will sort that out.

Not any longer.

As a business owner, YOU will be responsible for sales, marketing, pricing, compliance, administration, up to date knowledge, fee-earning, billing, credit control, IT, systems, filing, storage, suppliers, quality control - the list is endless.

You will initially (at least) work longer hours for less money. You will have times of pressure that you will have never experienced as an employee.

You will spend less time with friends and family as you throw yourself into your business.

Still want to proceed? Good - let's go.

To set up any business requires courage, determination, and commitment.

Ask of yourself some questions of your character:

  1. Have you got the courage to be exposed to a potential business failure? It takes a brave person to stand up and take a chance. This is why so many people stick to the safety net of employment and never achieve their potential.
  2. Have you got the determination to see this through? Do you see things to completion or do you like to take short cuts?
  3. Are you committed to making your business work? At the expense of time, money, and other sacrifices.

If the answer is yes to all three (assuming you have the technical knowledge) then you have a good chance of running your own accountancy or bookkeeping business and making it succeed.

In preparation, ask yourself the following additional questions which you can also use as a pre-launch checklist for your business:

In addition to the above start up questions, on an ongoing basis it is wise to review your practice monthly to ensure that you are on track to achieve your objectives. Try answering the following questions and use as a monthly checklist for your business:

By reacting to regular, honest assessment of your business you will be well placed to deal with challenges, seize opportunities, and ensure that you are aligning your business to it's objectives.

Many accountants and bookkeepers do not conduct regular reviews and do not pay sufficient attention to their own well being and the strategy of their business. The results of which are poor financial performance for the business and stress, anxiety, and demotivation for the owner(s).

The good news is that a well managed, disciplined accountancy / bookkeeping business can be extremely profitable and rewarding for it's owner(s).

Make the decision to fall into the second category, keep your eye firmly on the ball, and above all - enjoy!

I wish you the best of luck.