Why do we expect people to excel at jobs they are not equipped for and NEVER will be equipped for? Exactly. We shouldn't. Square peg, round hole. Yes, you did a great thing as an owner, you achieved a level of success and are clearly an above average, intelligent human.
Revenue producers or the best technical performers don’t make the best growth prospects. It just isn't going to happen.
As an owner, you should focus and support the strengths of your revenue producers, surround them with great people to handle the areas they are not so strong in. For CPAs, client service, marketing and business development are those roles. Don’t dare tell them that and I suspect that in your business, the same issue exists! Hire for the task and the role.
Hire Sales Professionals
How many people in other organizations, industries or professions expect the people with the industry and technical knowledge to split that time between selling and generating revenue? Look at them. They have professional sales teams with true sales resources and practices. What do CPAs do? Take their best CPA and make him or her a salesperson. As a business owner, what are you doing?
If you want to have a successful business (or CPA Firm), get sales pros, get marketing pros. Do what they tell you! What happened when we did that? Organic growth of 36% year two, 48% year three and year four is taking off like a rocket.
Hire Marketing Professionals
Ok, this one will get all of the experts riled up. But I am just going to say it. 9 out of 10 partners I talk to really do not even understand the difference between marketing and business development. I am not going to take the time to explain the difference, except to say that if you do not know the difference, it has to be hard to actually do real marketing. This applies to ANY business. A few quick thoughts:
I have read SO many posts by the experts who say, Facebook doesn't work, Twitter doesn't work, LinkedIn doesn't work, social media has no ROI. I must whole heartedly disagree.
Here is the concept of modern and current day marketing that works. You create a digital platform (a website) about your company and services. You then write expert content and give your intellectual capital away for FREE! Yes! Free!! You do that on a regular basis. You host it on an incredible platform such as Hubspot and you then drive traffic to this site (basic inbound marketing).
How do you do that? That's where social media comes into play. The role of social media in this application is to create a path to your website. You post things that link to your well written expert content and make people want to go read your incredible posts.
Here is another secret. Hire a marketing professional! Not a party planner or even organizer; hire a true marketing professional that can write and understands inbound marketing. This is why you are failing at marketing! Don’t’ try and direct the marketing team, listen to the team and doing what they tell you to do.
As business owners, we need the right people in those roles, it is a key to success. Right people, right role. The right people are usually not the the one's who do their job the best in your company. Don't make them do it! (Square peg, round hole, sound familiar?)
Marketing, business development and client service. Not the strengths of the business owner. Don’t let your ego get in the way, seek the input and help of true professionals in each of these areas and you chance of success I increased tremendously.
Wesley Middleton is the managing partner at MRZ LLP, a Houston, Texas-based accounting firm voted Best Place to Work by the Houston Business Journal. Wesley is the author of Violent Leadership (Forbes Books, 2017) and is represented by PumpJack Speakers Bureau. To book Wesley for your event, email Wesley.Middleton@PumpJack.me or click here.