This is the book I wished I had when I first started working for myself with big dreams of starting my own accountancy firm. For anyone who is dreaming of starting an accountancy practice, especially if they are considering doing it on a part-time basis around school runs, this book provides the most useful information I have ever read and is very inspiring.
Delegating, automating and systemising are the three main themes in this book. Getting systems in place and automating your processes as much as possible is the key to saving time and coping with more clients.
Another thing that I feel I missed out on was creating a support network and getting a coach/mentor or someone to be accountable to as early as possible in order to get things done and just support you. As a sole trader, working for yourself at home on your own can be lonely. Having a support network can help with that as well as finding ideas to grow your business. This book is a big help for people in this situation. As a mum and an accountant, I’m interested in following other mum’s who are accountants especially on social media and it’s quite inspiring to see how the list is growing. There is a huge potential to get support, even if its online and virtual from other accountants who work from home and are balancing kids, work and life.
There are 20 chapters in this book as follows:
- 1. Understanding your motivation
- 2. Establishing your systems and services
- 3. Dealing with formalities
- 4. Attending networking events and business shows
- 5. Setting your prices
- 6. Budgeting and controlling costs
- 7. Building your team
- 8. Choosing your software
- 9. Marketing your business
- 10. Running training courses
- 11. Networking through social media
- 12. Moving into premises
- 13. Controlling your cash flow
- 14. Becoming a trusted adviser
- 15. Speaking at and organising events
- 16. Buying a business
- 17. Buying a franchise
- 18. Deciding your exit strategy
- 19. Monitoring your management accounts and KPIs
- 20. Helping the wider community
- About the author
Each chapter talks about one aspect of the business. Some of the points are written out as bullet-pointed lists and there are lots of sub-headings to help you easily refer back to anything you want to check again.
A personal story
Throughout the book, there are little grey boxes which contain Della Hudson’s story about setting up and working for herself. It talks about what she struggled with and how she did things. Since I have followed her on some of the social media channels and on Accountingweb, I can recall some of things she mentions which just makes the book overall more relatable.
There’s also an interesting bit about buying a franchise. Another thing that I had contemplated but felt too much of an investment and commitment.
The conclusion is also perfect. ‘Never undervalue yourself. A good accountant can really add value to their clients even the smallest ones will benefit from a peace of mind.’
‘Whatever you decide, enjoy the ride.’ This quote was made after listing out the four options you have available to you from setting up and growing your business to buying a readymade business, buying a franchise to realising that running a business is not right for you at the moment.
‘Running a business is hard and it is not for everyone.’
Finally, the list of resources includes banks, accounting software and books she recommends including a few websites where you can get more information from. As I said right at the beginning, I would highly recommend this book to anyone who is starting out and thinking of setting up their own practice.