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What Is the True Value of a Client

Have you really considered the true value of a client?

One of the first salary tax return clients I gained when starting my accounting practice in Osborne Park 24 years ago is still a client. This client (Mr A) was originally a mechanic and an $80 tax return client.

But over the last 24 years this one client has generated over $200,000 of tax fees.

How did this happen? Like a lot of tradespeople after a couple of years he purchased a business (service station). The annual fees then jumped to $8,000 or so pa for the company, tax planning and self-managed super fund.

After ten years the business was sold and the annual fees dropped to the current level of $6,000 pa (for an investment company and self-managed super fund).

To generate this level of fees from an original salary tax client three things must happen:

  • Firstly, the client must go into business (Have you discussed with your tradesperson clients how to start a business and the benefits?)
  • You must actually add more value to the client than the fees you charge
  • The client must have confidence that you are the best person to handle their accounting/tax affairs as they grow their business. What often happens is when salary clients grow their business they move to a bigger more professional firm to handle their work as they don’t perceive the current accountant is up to the job (sometime they are wrong, but often they are right).

Accountants need to ask themselves if they are really working to help their clients to achieve their full potential or whether they are just acting as form fillers.

Author: Darren Gleeson, CEO Success Tax Professionals (current November 2015)