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Jon Neal joins Mike Michalowicz, Chris Curran, and Ron Saharyan to discuss the Financial Statement Analysis for business owners. Welcome to Episode 11 of the Grow My Accounting Practice Podcast!
Jon has over 35 years of experience in public accounting. In 1977, Jon graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM) with a BBA in Accounting and Management Information Systems and in 1987 from UWM with a Masters of Science in Taxation (MST). He is especially focused on closely held businesses and their owners to help them reach their goals. Jon has helped hundreds of businesses grow by offering hands on assistance in accounting systems, business creation and expansion, tax planning, financial planning, organizational development and acquisition strategies. In 2007, Jon received the Personal Financial Specialist designation from the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants to reflect the years spent with clients planning for their retirement, family protection and succession planning. Jon received his CPA license in 1980 and is a member of the AICPA and WICPA. Jon also holds a Series 65 Investment Advisory Representative license from FINRA. Milwaukee Magazine has named Jon a Five Star Wealth Advisor in the accounting area for 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2013 only one of three CPA’s in the Milwaukee Area to be so named. Jon was also named Small Business Accountant of the Year in 2011 and 2012 by the US. Small Business Owners Association.. Jon is the author of The Best Doggone Tax Advice, Breaking the Tax Code, Obamacre and the IRS Uncovereed,57 Wasy to Grow Your Business and The Small Business Start-up Kit, has appeared on various television shows and had a radio show since 2010 called “The Best Doggone Tax and Financial Advice”. The Neal Group LLC was founded in 1984 after Jon decided to leave as partner of a large, local CPA firm. Personally, Jon enjoys singing in his church’s choir, spending time with his family, dog and volunteer work. Jon and his wife, Ann, live in Hales Corners. They have four children and three grandchildren.
Sit down with your clients and go over their financial statements. Search for trends over a time line and for things that don’t look quite right. When you focus on that their sensitivity to what could be going wrong can be easier detected.
Ask them questions about specific things on their statement! Why is this happening? Why are you up/down vs. last month? Last year?
Take the time to educate your clients so they are open to your suggestions. DO NOT just go through the bare minimum steps! Take the opportunity to become more of an educational base for your customers – they will value your services more for it.
The more you educate your customers the more questions they will ask. The more questions they ask the more revenue it brings to you.
The Psychology of the sale: outcome based thinking
Everyday there are salesmen having conversations with prospective clients, and all too often the answer is “no”. The major reason for this is that the sales person has not planned properly! You never know what the result is going to be, but using this type of thinking will turn this into a win-win based strategy.
Determine how a meeting or situation will go before the meeting ever takes place – go over what you want out of this meeting and this conversation.
What does the prospective client want or what are they likely to want?
What is the least you will accept out of this conversation?
What problems could arise? How will you deal with each problem? If possible can I turn this problem into a benefit?
How will I end this meeting?
Preparation is key! Don’t go into any meeting or situation by “winging it”.
GMAP Now Task
It’s time to go to a flate rate once and for all! Write down that number you want to dictate from your clients every month. Now write down all of the things you are going to do for that rate. Write down all the things that you’re doing right now that you don’t even think about. For example, are you backing up the quickbooks database? Write it down. Are you doing 15 minute check ins once a week with your client? Write it down! The more you document the more your perceived value is. Write down the number you want and write down the ways to justify it.
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