How many decisions have you made in the past month? As the owner of a creative agency, you likely make decisions all day, every day. Which contractor to hire for production? Where to prioritize your market research? What can you pay for holiday bonuses? You must be exhausted! Do you even have energy leftover to decide where to take a vacation when you find time to take a vacation?  

Congratulations on being the decision maker! You’ve worked hard to become an agency owner and it’s not always easy to be the leader. How do you make all of the decisions? Is there anyone that helps you gather information, with expertise and an opinion that you value? If your accountant is not near the top of your mind right now, continue reading!

What is an accountant’s job?

An accountant’s job is to communicate information that improves your decisions. There is a unique combination of 3 facts that position an accountant to be a natural choice as an advisor to your agency. Fact #1 is that your accountant delivers financial statements and tax filings for your agency and in that process gains a deep understanding of your agency’s  goals, trends, budget, strategy, struggles and strengths. Fact #2 is that your accountant brings an outside perspective to your table. I like to describe the gem of an outside perspective as it relates to a simple glass  jar. No matter how smart you are, you cannot read the label from inside the jar but someone outside of the jar can easily read it. Fact #3 is that your accountant is a neutral observer that is not emotionally entwined with your agency’s success or failure.  Hopefully, they are holding pom poms and cheering for you to win but ultimately your success or failure does not alter your accountant’s career path or livelihood the way it does your staff.   These unique aspects help accountants to deliver informed, unbiased advice to you. This relationship could be instrumental in your success so it is crucial that you partner with the accountant of your dreams.

What should you look for when hiring an accountant?

A dreamy accountant  embodies these 3 values. 

  1.  Your accountant has to be cool. You should be fully entertained and inspired having a cup of coffee with your accountant and discussing anything that you think is cool. If you don’t want to chat about simple things like weekend activities or favorite restaurants with each other, then you will not  want to chat about complex ideas like the future strategy of your agency. 
  2. Your accountant has to specialize in creative agencies. This guarantees that you will spend less time providing information and more time receiving information. There is immeasurable value when your accountant is familiar with your Harvest software or already knows about David Baker’s recommended 45% maximum salary load and Blair Enns sales pitching revolution. An industry expert can also help you benchmark to  understand and plan for industry trends.
  3. Your accountant has to be respectful. This means that your accountant listens closely and responds reliably. When you reach out, you should expect a response within 72 hours. Even if the response is just saying that they hear you and are working on an answer. It will help if your accountant communicates the way you like to,  whether that is by Slack, email, phone, video conference, or in person. 

You deserve a dreamy accountant!

So, let’s think about  how many decisions you need to make next month for your creative agency. Do you have an accountant communicating information that improves those decisions? You have already worked hard and invested so much to develop your agency. The next step is to find a dreamy accountant. Send an email today asking your colleagues for referrals. Interview as many as it takes until you find the cool factor. I promise, dreamy accountants are everywhere. 

What else do you want to know? If you still have question on this topic, feel free to email me at info@colvincpa.com. I may answer your question in my next blog.