7 ways to have the right mindset for growth during a recession

A fixed mindset is thinking that the recession means business stops and clients don’t want to spend money.
A growth mindset is using this recession as an opportunity to adapt and do things differently.
You bees the second mindset if you want to grow your firm doing the recession.
The only thing holding you and your firm back from growing right now is you. To help you move your practice forward, both now during the pandemic and during any future recessions, here are 7 mindset shifts you need to make.

1) Make peace with your reality

Suffering is what happens when you resist what is already happening. The sooner you confront the current reality and accept it, the quicker you can move past it.

2) Hold yourself accountable

If you want to grow, you need to think of the acronym R.O.A.D. You need to take Responsibility for the choices you’ve made, you need to take Ownership of where you want to go, you need to start taking Action, and you need to be Decisive. When making your strategy plan, be 100% accountable for putting it into action.

3) Don’t compare yourself to others

Some businesses are struggling, others are thriving. Don’t compare yourself to either. Every business owner, firm, and situation is different, so don’t disrupt your focus with doubt.

4) Prioritise delivering value

Concentrate on delivering exceptional service to your current clients. How can you offer extra value during this time? This will make you invaluable and it will ensure that you stand out from your competitors.

5) Focus on your strengths, not your ‘failures’

What work are you good at? What do you love to do the most? Which clients are your favourites to work with? Being positive during this time is essential, so focus on what you love and reflect on your principles and values. Rediscovering why you do what you do is very powerful when it comes to self-motivation and drive.

6) Fail fast and achieve quickly

Inaction is the worst thing you can do, not trying something and failing. During a time of such change, don’t procrastinate and don’t be a perfectionist. Take action, fail fast, learn from your mistakes, and concentrate on getting there first (not doing it perfectly and getting there last).

7) Be grateful and become self-aware

Practice gratitude every day by thinking about what you are grateful for both now and in your future. Also, take time to reflect and to rediscover your purpose. If you’re confident and happy, you will attract similar clients.

Adapt AND adopt

We have all had to adapt to some degree during the pandemic, for example, being forced to adapt to working from home. Changes such as these are necessary to our ‘survival’ during this time.
With that being said, however, it is the accountants who have both adapted and adopted changes of their own, who have thrived. These are the individuals who make quick and effective decisions, who take responsibility for changing their situation, and who take action.
Anyone can grow their firm during a recession, they just have to have the right mindset.

How to increase your business capacity without breaking the bank!

Winning new clients should be an exciting part of growing a business. And yet, due to the current climate, this rising demand is often met with limited resources and labour shortages.

Throughout this article, we’ll explore how outsourcing and offshoring can help you increase your capacity without breaking the bank!

What is the difference between Outsourcing and Offshoring?

Outsourcing is when a business hires a third party to perform tasks in order to improve efficiency and cut back on costs. Think of this as hiring freelancers.

Offshoring, however, is when a business bases some of its in-house operations overseas. By moving entire processes overseas (i.e. manufacturing or customer services), they’re able to source cheaper labour and gain access to a much larger talent pool.

Both options serve as a cost-effective solution to labour shortages and fulfilling increasing demands.

4 ways outsourcing can increase your capacity

Now that we understand what outsourcing and offshoring are, let’s explore how they can help your business increase capacity:

1. Expanding your skillset

We all understand the importance of identifying and remedying gaps in our workforce. However, hiring and training specialist staff comes at a cost. So, what’s the solution?

By outsourcing global talent, you’re able to employ highly skilled professionals for just a fraction of the cost. In turn, you can address any gaps in your workforce and leverage their talents to expand your services and attract new clientele.

2) Boosting Productivity

By assigning repetitive tasks to your external team members, you can save a lot of time otherwise wasted on labour-intensive, lower-value tasks. As a result, you’re able to boost your existing teams’ efficiency and engagement, scale your overall output and ultimately increase your capacity.

3) Facilitating 24hr operations

Many people are hesitant to outsource global talent because of the time difference. What they don’t realise is that this can actually work in their favour!

By outsourcing a global team, you’re able to extend your working hours and potentially operate 24-hours a day. In turn, you have the opportunity to accept a lot more work and expand your client basis. After all, you’ve practically doubled the number of hours in your working day!

4) Offering fast and flexible labour solutions

Labour shortages are placing a real strain on businesses at the minute. Thankfully, outsourcing provides a fast and flexible solution to this problem!

By hiring freelancers, you’re able to continue growing your business, fulfilling demand and satisfying customers. What’s more, these flexible contracts come with no strings attached, giving you the freedom to adjust your external team to match your capacity and workload.

Expand your team to increase capacity

Instead of surrendering to your current circumstances, try expanding your horizons by outsourcing global talent.

Outsourcing allows you to scale your business, increase your clientele and reach your highest potential – all for a fraction of the price of hiring internally.

So what are you waiting for? Offshoring could be the beginning of your global enterprise!

6 key changes businesses should have made over the past 2 years

The pandemic has been transformative in many ways. It has changed how we view our health, how we communicate and, of course, how we run our businesses. Whilst we certainly wouldn’t want to do it again, it has taught us a lot of valuable lessons. In light of the lesson we’ve learnt, we thought we’d share 6 key changes we believe all businesses should have made since the pandemic:

1) Hybrid Working

Before the pandemic hybrid working was a lot less common, however this is no longer the case. Recent studies have shown that 76% of companies have adopted a hybrid working model since the pandemic because it has proven to be so effective!
Employees are more productive, more engaged and generally happier when provided the opportunity to choose their work environment. Your employees and your profit margin will thank you for adopting a more flexible working model!

2) Internal Communications

Learning to navigate a business in social isolation has really highlighted the importance of effective communication, not only between team members but between firm owners and partners too.
We made sure to have daily zoom meetings with the whole team throughout the pandemic so that we all had a chance to see and talk to each other, even if there was nothing particular to report. Without these open streams of communication we would not have been able to adapt our businesses, engage our teams or maintain operations during the Covid-19 crisis.
Therefore, you must continue to prioritise and invest in your internal communications. After all, if the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that effective communication is a valuable commodity.

3) Digital Processes

Working from home forced us to adapt in more ways than one. However, the most notable difference has been the global shift towards virtual working and digital processes.
Adopting cloud-based software has innumerable advantages, but perhaps the most noteworthy is its ability to increase efficiency. In a recent survey, 48% of respondents agreed that cloud computing increased their efficiency thanks to cloud automation and broad network access.
So, if you haven’t already, do yourself a favour and start streamlining your processes by using a digital payment process and introducing automation tools to your workflow.

4) Advisory Services

If guiding our clients through the pandemic has shown us anything, it’s that our advice is both valuable and scalable. Developing your advisory services is something you need to make sure you are doing.
Offering tailored advice can be a simple way to utilise your expertise, enhance client relations and increase revenue. So don’t limit yourself to debits and credits – expand your services by offering relevant business advice!

5) Outsourcing

In a time when we had to adapt quickly many businesses had to outsource labour and resources to operate, and that continues to be the case. Labour shortages have forced us to seriously evaluate what we can and can not deliver in-house.
Yet, despite the great resignation and the global pandemic we’ve come to find there are actually many benefits to outsourcing.
Outsourcing can improve revenue, increase efficiency, and reduce operational costs. What’s more, it enables you to delegate tasks outside of your expertise, allowing you to channel your energy into what you do best. Don’t be afraid to ask for help as you’ll need it if you want to scale your business.

6) Refined client base

They say that every cloud has a silver lining. Whilst the pandemic did present us with many hardships, it also allowed us to take a good look at our client base.
If you’re yet to do so, we highly recommend reviewing your client base as well. Who are your high-value clients? Which clients drain your resources? The aim is to identify which clients you can afford to let go in order to save yourself both time and money.
Although culling clients is never easy, refining your client profile can be extremely beneficial if done respectfully. This will help you make space for more clients that fit your ideal client profile!

Future-proof your business

Unfortunately Covid-19 won’t be the last challenge we face. There will always be another bump in the road or another fire to put out. By implementing these suggestions you have the ability to streamline your business, optimise your performance and keep up with your competitors, all of which are essential when preparing your firm for the future.
Try not to be despondent when times get tough. Remember, challenges are also opportunities for growth and innovation.

Laptop with flowers

12 ways to increase profit margins (and thrive in business)

Your profit margin is how much money you actually get to walk away with after a transaction is complete (revenue – costs = profit). It makes sense then, that businesses who want to grow, focus on increasing this margin. The bigger the margin you have, the more you will thrive and be able to power through challenges like the economic climate that we find ourselves in today.

So how do you do it? How do you increase your profit and master your margins?

  1. Identify what is not working – before you can fix something, you need to know what’s broken. Take an objective look at your business and your processes and identify the gaps.
  2. Streamline your processes – the faster you can provide a service, the faster you can generate revenue and increase your profit margin. Where can you speed up your processes to trim costs without impacting quality? I.e using cloud accounting software.
  3. Discover any areas where there is waste – where does your business spend money? Are you losing money through inefficiency or waste? Can you reduce your expenses?
  4. Market those higher-end services – what services sell best and deliver the highest profit? Prioritise these in your marketing and focus your efforts on pushing these more.
  5. Aim for incremental growth – try not to get ahead of yourself. Set yourself small goals and you’ll find that you’ll make consistent, and more importantly, sustainable progress.
  6. Focus on building your team a happy, motivated, and productive team, one that supports your growth goals, can make a world of difference to your profit margin.
  7. Be innovative in your strategy – if the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s how to strategically innovate our service. What are you not offering your target audience that they really need? What can you replace in the service that you’re offering now?
  8. Cross-promote to increase your credibility – if you get a good response from running webinars or writing content, think about ways you can cross-promote with someone influential in certain topics. Not only does this increase your credibility, but it capitalises on the other person’s time, money, and resources too.
  9. Identify other pillars for revenue – is there a service that brings in the majority of your revenue? If there is, try to see what other areas you can focus on to build another revenue-generating pillar. You don’t want your strategy to be dependent on a single pillar (what if that pillar fell down?). Your aim should be to strengthen another area or two and this will increase your margin too.
  10. Create a loyalty programme with your clients – your clients know, like, and trust you, and they are your best advocates. They are your free sales team, so help them spend more with you and tell others about your services. How can you create a loyalty programme to reward them?
  11. Raise your fees – if you haven’t had a rate increase recently, you have an easy way of increasing your profit! Just make sure to approach this right, conveying your increase in value rather than your profit margin.
  12. Outsource certain tasks – a great way of increasing your profit margin is to outsource some lower-value tasks to freelancers or contracted workers. You can use them only when demand is high or part-time.

How do I guarantee the quality of work when outsourcing?

Do you worry about outsourcing work because you don’t think the quality will be the same as you’re getting now? Do you worry that the outsourcer won’t be in line with your company’s cultural values? Do you worry that you won’t be in control of the process and that you might end up having to do more work checking over what someone else has done?

If you are guilty of losing sleep over one or more of these worries above, then take a step back and open your mind to the possibility that outsourcing work can be a huge success. Your outsourcer may even do a better job than your staff – imagine that! To help ease your quality concerns, here are 6 things that you need to do to ensure that you get the quality you want.

6 must-dos to guarantee the quality of work when outsourcing

  • Invest more in the selection process

Since you’ll be working with the outsourcer you choose, hopefully, for the long haul, you must take the time to select this person/company and ensure that they are a good fit for your projects. Try assigning the same project to 2 or 3 different outsourcers; it’s a great way of comparing the quality of work and deciding who are the best people to work with.

  • Ask them what processes they have in place

A good outsourcer will be able to show you the processes they have in place to ensure you get the level of quality you require and minimal rework. Before you work with them, take the time to ask them about these processes so that you can understand how they will ensure a quality job is delivered on time and how you can keep in control of the process.

  • Discuss how mistakes will be resolved beforehand

Will they rectify any mistakes and make amendments at no cost? Or will this be something that you will need to do on your time? Discuss this in advance so that you both set expectations.

  • Give clear briefs

Sometimes quality may suffer because the outsourcer hasn’t been given a clear or detailed brief. Make sure that you have given them everything they need and confirm this with them before they start the work!

  • Communicate regularly

Regular communication is vital to keep you both aligned to the goals of the project, so make sure that you decide the best way to communicate and when before the project starts. Whether this is via Zoom, Slack or even WhatsApp, make sure you are getting regular progress updates from them and that you’re available if they come across any issues.

  • Treat your outsourcer like a new member of the team

You wouldn’t expect a new member of your team to deliver a top-quality job first time around. After

all, you’d take the time to go over with them exactly what your firm requires, e.g. processes they

have to use and standards they need to achieve. It’s the same when you start outsourcing.

Your outsourced team will need some time to work to your standards and your processes, so oversee the first project and provide feedback. From then on, take more of a backseat but respond promptly when they have any issues or questions, and always give feedback to help them learn what you want.


Getting Started With Outsourcing: the Insider’s Guide

Outsourcing is becoming more popular as technology propels the business world forward. And why wouldn’t it? Outsourcing manual, low-value tasks allows business owners to focus on better client service as well as those areas that will actually grow their business and keep them competitive.

While these points are completely valid, some professionals still have their doubts about outsourcing; will this affect the quality of work? Will this go down horribly with my clients?

To help ease these concerns, we’ve put together a quick outsourcing guide.

Top 8 Outsourcing FAQs Answered

1, What actually is outsourcing?

Outsourcing is when you decide to ask someone, who is not directly employed by you, to complete some work for your business that is usually done by someone who is employed directly by you.

2. What is the typical turnaround time for an outsourced job?

This depends on the task that you outsource and the agreement that you make with your outsourced provider. However, expect to compromise on turnaround time if you’re paying less.

3. What will outsourcing cost?

The cost of outsourcing depends on what model you choose (for example, you could be charged on a per hour basis or on a per job basis). Don’t forget to also factor in any potential hidden costs, such as the time it takes for your staff to review the work.

4. Will an outsourcer do as good a job as us?

Quality is a big worry for many business owners who are considering outsourcing. Like any job, there are no guarantees that your chosen outsourced provider will do as good a job as your staff, but then on the flip side, there’s also no guarantee that they won’t do a better job. Outsourcing is all about trial and error and doing the due diligence to find the right person. You can then put the necessary processes in place to ensure quality work (with minimal re-work) every time.

5. What due diligence should I do on my potential outsourcer?

Outsourcing your client work is a big decision that shouldn’t be taken lightly so make sure that you do your due diligence. The best outsourcers come recommended, but if you don’t have this, ask them; how they will guarantee the quality of work, where they are located, what office hours they work, the best way to contact them and when, and check things like their quality of English and their workflows.

6. How do I get started with outsourcing?

Take the time to talk to your outsourcer to make sure you are 100% happy with everything before moving forward. If you’re not confident or you’re having doubts, outsource just a few low-value tasks first. This will give you the chance to iron out any kinks at low risk.

7. Which clients’ work should I start to outsource first?

To test your outsourcer, start with ‘easy work’ with low-risk clients. Which clients do you struggle to make a profit on? Which tasks don’t take long to complete? Which tasks do you dread doing? If you choose the clients that, if things go wrong, you won’t jeopardise a strong client relationship, this is a great place to start.

8. Do we need to tell our clients that we are outsourcing their work?

It’s good practice, and in some cases, you are contractually obliged, to tell your clients that their work may be done by your outsourced team. This is especially true if you’re using staff outside of the EU as their data could be processed outside of the EU. You can do this easily by updating your contracts with ‘we may use a carefully selected contractor to complete your work’ and ‘your data could be processed outside of the EU,’ and also mentioning this when you engage with them.

Try outsourcing and see what you think

Interestingly when you talk about outsourcing, it produces a strong reaction – often one of fear. But before you get caught up in emotion, it’s worth taking a step back and thinking about outsourcing more generally.

You need to at least try it (with some low-value tasks) before making a solid decision. It may take some time and trial and error first, but when you find someone who can produce quality work for you consistently, you can free up the time to concentrate on the higher-value tasks; the tasks that will grow your business and ensure that you remain competitive.