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Better Business Development Strategies for Accountants

Barbara Koenen on the Accounting Influencers podcast with BD Academy founder Rob BrownBarbara Koenen is the author of the book Beyond Billable Hours and Global Head of Business Development and Marketing at Ince, a legal and professional services provider with more than 900 employees globally. She is based in Dubai and has 10 years of business development and marketing experience in the professional services industry.

She writes regular blog posts on her website www.beyondbillablehours.com and is very passionate about helping fee earners in professional services firms to thrive as she knows how hard it is to focus on things beyond billable hours. Shownotes:

  • The difference between marketing, sales and business development for accounting professionals
  • Why sales and selling are such difficult words for professionals like accountants and lawyers
  • The #1 reason professional service firms should build the selling skills and culture of their people
  • The problem for professionals who can bill fees but not generate new revenues in a professional firm
  • An explanation for why accountants and lawyers don’t think like business people
  • Thoughts on how coachable professionals like accountants, CPAs and lawyers are ‘as a breed’
  • Why almost everyone in professional services should be ‘hands on’ with business development
  • The need for a business development plan or strategy and why not every tactic will succeed to bring in new work
  • How a different approach to winning business is required by different professionals depending on a number of factors
  • A great example of why some accountants and professionals should not go to networking events to win business
  • Sound advice for young accountants and lawyers who want to make partner in a professional firm
  • The importance of setting goals to grow your professional firm, either corporately or as an individual accountant
  • What to do as a career ambitious accountant if your personal goals do not align with your firm’s goals
  • Why starting early in your accounting or professional career with business development is much better than waiting
  • The relevance of writing out a business development or work winning plan and why ‘in your head’ is not good enough
  • Great questions accountants should ask themselves in devising a business development strategy
  • The key reasons why professionals are technically good but struggle to sell and promote themselves as individuals
  • What developing a reputation in your business community or market looks like for an accountant looking to be successful
  • Where the inspiration for the book ‘Beyond Billable Hours’ came from
  • How so much money is wasted in accounting firms on the wrong kind of professional and business development activities
  • How the covid pandemic has changed the way accountants and other professionals win new business
  • Where the ‘low hanging fruit’ really is for accountants and CPAs who want to develop new business opportunities

Barbara Koenen on the Accounting Influencers podcast with BD Academy founder Rob Brown

Barbara is a mother of 20-month old Olivier, born on Christmas Day, and she is expecting another boy around Christmas. She is a keen golfer, sailor and skier and she loves to cook and bake. Contact her here:

Website and blog

LinkedIn