Closeup on red apples on wooden

Put Yourself in Your Clients’ Shoes

I was talking with an accountant the other day and they kept on using the phrase “Added Value Services”.

I really don’t like this phrase – I find it to be insulting to accountants as it implies there are things we do for clients that do not add value.

Eventually I stopped them and asked them to tell me about the last time they met with a prospect.

They told me a great story about how a business owner had come into to see them and talked about their plans to set up a new business. And the accountant had asked them lots of questions about what the business was going to sell, their ideal customer, how they would market their products and services, where they would operate from, how many people would be involved, what their roles would be, and so on and so on.

Then the accountant said – well it seems to me that you should probably set up a limited company and based on your plans you’ll need to be vat registered. You’ll also need help to set up and run your payroll and as you’re not really a seasonal business the year end can be what suits you personally.

I call this “If you want to be an apple then you need to do X, Y and Z”

This is a great way to sell without selling by the way – find out what a client wants and then present them with the things they need to do and you can help them with. All you are doing is enabling them to achieve their wants by providing what they need to achieve them.

Back to the story.

The accountant asked more questions and the prospect kept on talking about their plans.

At the end of the meeting the prospect said “that was great, I’d really like you to look after us, thank you for all the advice”

There you go – stuff we take for granted is often highly valued by clients.

Put yourself in your clients’ shoes and everything is advisory!

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