For small business owners, the services of a business accountant can be of significant importance. At Leenane Templeton we are involved in more than preparing financial statements and tax returns – we can provide assistance on everything from estate planning to business financing. In most cases, accountants are just another outside professional; he or she is a trusted advisor – and an integral part of the business family.
Ideally, the client/accountant relationship provides for ongoing advice, often prompted by your questions about ways to improve the company’s finances and operations. Well thought out questions by clients also helps to ensure that together, we will prevent or solve major problems and take advantage of emerging opportunities for you and your business.
BELOW YOU WILL FIND 103 QUESTIONS ON:
- General Management
- Financing Your Business
- Information Technology
- Accounting Issues
- Business Tax Planning
- Salaries and Benefits
- Personal Wealth Creation
- plus Tips for Getting the Mostfrom Your Accountant
KEEPING YOU ON THE RIGHT TRACK
We can help your business and your personal finances to stay on the right track. Contact our business accountants now and we’ll arrange a meeting to discuss:
- Strategies to help your business improve its efficiency and profitability
- Reducing the burden of taxes on your business
- The tax issues that affect you and your family
- Maximising your wealth
- Retirement planning strategies for you and other family members
GENERAL BUSINESS MANAGEMENT QUESTIONS
FINANCING YOUR BUSINESS QUESTIONS
INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY QUESTIONS
BUSINESS ACCOUNTING ISSUE QUESTIONS
BUSINESS TAX PLANNING QUESTIONS
SALARIES & BENEFITS QUESTIONS
PERSONAL WEALTH CREATION QUESTIONS
OUR BUSINESS ACCOUNTANTS ARE HERE TO HELP
Make use of us! This guide is merely a starting point, designed to help you identify areas that might have a significant impact on your personal and business planning. We are always pleased to discuss matters with you and advise in any way we can. Click for a full list of our business accounting services
CALL TODAY ON 02 4926 2300
This guide is indicative only, and professional advice should be obtained before acting on any information contained herein. Neither the publishers nor the distributors can accept any responsibility for loss occasioned to any person as a result of action taken or refrained from in consequence of the contents of this publication.
Tips For Getting The Most From Your Business Accountant
Does your business need professional advice? How can you make sure that you get the best advice? How much is it going to cost? Read on and find out.
Tip No. 1 – Recognise your strengths and limitations
How many small business owners repair their own photocopier? Whilst it may be a relatively mechanical task that may be carried out with the use of a manual, why do so few businesses do it? The answer is generally that they recognise that somebody else can do it more efficiently, reliably and cost-effectively. However, many already over-worked business owners get out the textbooks or surf the ‘net’ and try to develop professional expertise in business law, tax planning, contracts and a host of other highly specialised areas. There is nothing wrong with trying to solve problems yourself if it is cost-effective to do so.
A business owner does need to be an expert on the fundamentals of their business, and have a working knowledge of other areas that are important for the day-to-day operation of their business. They don’t have to be an expert in every aspect of their business. Proper external advice may cost you less than you think.
Tip No. 2 – Understand the issues
Before consulting accountants or other professionals it is worthwhile trying to get an overview of their expertise, what’s involved and how it might be able to help your business. An overview before the meeting will help you to set realistic goals and expectations for their involvement. It will also help you to ask relevant and intelligent questions and understand and act upon the advice given. A little preparation will help to maximise the benefits of the time you spend together.
Tip No. 3 – Take advantage of ‘free’ consultations
Many accountants offer free consultations at one time or another. Take advantage of them. You can usually get more out of these free consultations if, before the meeting, you give some thought to a specific issue. Consider sending a summary of your business situation; setting out some of the issues you feel that you need assistance. In this way they will have had enough time and background information to give the issue some serious thought and the ‘free consultation’ will actually result in advice being provided, not just dialogue. It’s also a great way to find out if the accountant really understands the issues affecting your business.
Tip No. 4 – Make their job easier Accountants and other professionals sell time.
The less you use, the less it costs. The key to using less of their time is to organise yourself so that you make their job as easy as possible. That means preparing for meetings. Think through in advance what you want to ask, discuss and achieve. Have a list of discussion points ready when you meet. Ask them beforehand what information they are going to need, and make sure it is ready for them in advance. Keep your business affairs as organised as possible. Seek input about how you can improve your ‘housekeeping’ to make their task easier. If you do all that they suggest you are in a far stronger position to negotiate a lower fee. Accountants generally charge well-organised clients less than disorganised ones.
Tip No. 5 – Ask early and don’t take shortcuts Generally speaking, it’s simpler and less costly to prevent a problem than it is to solve one.
Business owners in the spirit of exercising their entrepreneurship often act and enter into arrangements without considering the implications of their actions. A short telephone call or meeting with your accountant may cost a little, bu may be trivial in relation to the costs of solving a problem or even missing an opportunity, such as minimising tax exposure or obtaining asset protection. It may be false economy to ‘go it alone’ and try to avoid the costs of being properly informed.