Tips for Women Starting Their Own CPA Firm
Being an accountant means having a wide range of options for your professional life. You can work at quite literally any company or organization. You can do non-profit work, government work, and big corporation work. You can be the boss, give valuable info to the boss, and yes, own your own business. For many, that business is opening up a CPA firm.
A CPA firm is a company that provides accounting services to other companies or individuals. They must be at least partially owned by a licensed Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA) and can handle bookkeeping, auditing, consulting, and other financial services.
Women represent approximately 50% of all CPA’s in the United States. However, they only represent 23% of partners in CPA firms around the county. Nevertheless, many women in the field can bridge that gap. If you are thinking of being one of them, here are some tips and things to think about for starting your own CPA firm.
Assess Yourself and Your Desire to Run a Business
You can have a fantastic career as a CPA without running your own business. However, it would be best to do a self-assessment to see where your head’s at and whether ownership is truly something you want to do. Ask yourself some tough questions, such as what are your reasons for wanting to open a firm and whether you have the experience and skills needed to do it right.
Make sure that you also do an honest self-assessment of your personal skills, talents, and attributes. For example, will you be self-motivated enough to work hard through long days and late nights? Do you have the time to commit to building up to launch a new business? These are all things you need to consider before you even think about announcing your new company.
Have a Plan
It’s an unfortunate fact of life that, as a woman, you should expect to be underestimated at times. Not only that, but with so few women owning CPA firms, it’s less common than some other fields. Therefore, you need to present yourself and your business prospects in the best possible way. Develop a comprehensive and professional business plan that you can provide to potential investors, government funders, and business loan institutions. Your goal should be accurate and realistic, and you should be able to answer any questions you are asked about it. A good plan will not just make you look prepared and professional, but it will also give you a road map for where you want to take your business.
Working as a CPA means that you already have extra trust and responsibilities on your shoulders. However, when you own a business, the buck stops with you. Any mistakes that happen will affect your bottom line. A lawsuit or a situation that gives you bad PR could be a death knell for your firm. You need to have the right insurance in place so that you and your business are protected in case of any negative situations. You will need coverage for your property, professional liability, and general liability. Your profession has specific risks associated with it, and you can find out about accountant insurance costs online while trying to get the best rates possible. Never try to get away with not having a coverage type you might eventually need. You will be very sorry you don’t have it when you need it.
Every business needs effective marketing to stay afloat. Fortunately, we now live in an age where marketing is easier than ever to do, but it’s also tricky to stand out from everyone else. As a woman who owns a CPA firm, you may have an advantage if you’d like. Women tend to be underrepresented in many fields as owners. So you would market your business to other women-owned and run businesses and organizations and carve out an excellent market share.
It is more affordable to use digital marketing methods to get the word out. This includes search engine optimization (SEO), paid search engine ads, and social media. Your brand’s personality should be reflected in the content that you produce, especially on social media. Make sure to answer any reviews, concerns, and comments to keep your audience engaged and connected with your company.
Hiring Your Team
When someone hires a CPA firm, they are putting a lot of trust in you. You will have access to every intimate detail of your client’s lives and businesses. You cannot breach that trust, and you also have to do everything in your power to do an excellent job for everyone. Otherwise, you could harm their livelihoods, and your business will suffer as a result. Because of all this, you need the best team on your side possible.
Make sure to run a background check on every potential new hire. You will cut down on the likelihood of hiring someone who would betray that trust. Being a woman also means it is more likely you will have to deal with sexism on the job, so try to hire those who will be accepting of you as the leader and the boss.
It might seem like accounting is a repetitive and possibly boring career choice to many on the outside. However, nothing could be further from the truth. There are many avenues you can take, and there are always things to learn. Make sure that you continue to enrich your learning throughout your career. Not only does this mean learning about accounting and finance, but also about developing strategies and leadership. Take courses, read books, and improve your knowledge. You can get additional certifications that will allow you to demand higher service costs and make you a better boss.
Being a woman in any field comes with unique challenges. However, as a CPA, you are more than qualified to run your own business and provide superior financial services. By following these tips, you can launch your own CPA firm and have fantastic success for years to come.
Please note that this post was written by a third-party and does not necessarily reflect the views of Arab America or its employees. These posts help allow Arab America to produce our wonderful original content, thanks for your understanding.
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