Apr 18, 2018 10:30:00 AM

ENOUGH with the FCC!

When we were growing up, if Mike, Mitzi and I were constantly arguing or fighting, Mom would patiently warn us several times to stop. If we continued to be rowdy, she would finally step back in the room and say, “I’ve had ENOUGH!” which we knew meant our future was not real bright and our backsides were now in jeopardy. As a profession, we need a wake-up call of our own about the disruption and speed of change we are facing. So, today, we will use the term ENOUGH just as Mom did. 

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Topics: Empowered People, People Development, Anticipatory, Leadership

Apr 4, 2018 10:00:00 AM

Seizing the Future as Anticipatory Advisors

This blog is the fourth part of a series meant to outline the Four Building Blocks to Move to Advisory Services.

We’ve already discussed the first two blocks: MINDSET SHIFT and CONFIDENCE. ANTICIPATORY SKILLS is the third building block to move our organizations towards advisory services and seize our future by being relevant—starting now.

I believe this is a new skill that is required. Being anticipatory is defined as aware, predictive and adaptive. If we simply focus on being agile or nimble, we are always responding to things and being disrupted. By anticipating, we can actually be the disruptor and capture new opportunities. Seeing disruption coming provides us choices. Choices we must make today.

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Topics: Anticipatory, Leadership

Mar 14, 2018 11:30:00 AM

Mind the Gap: A Wake-Up Call for Professional Services Firms

We see it every day—automation, implemented well, reduces the amount of compliance work we perform.

We experience it every dayfierce competition from outside our profession pursuing our clients. 

We feel it every daythe market for professional services is demanding and opening the door for "higher value services."

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Topics: Leadership

Mar 7, 2018 11:30:00 AM

New Competitors Don't Have Legacy Beliefs

In my last blog, we related my personal story of changing hair stylists to the process that clients are actually using to find relevant advisors today. They are leaving existing relationships by pulling in information from advisors that are speaking to their needs. Our profession is at an intersection where many of our historical services are less valued and being commoditized due to our lack of differentiation. In fact, more and more firms are competing on price rather than value. The decreased margins across the profession speak to this loud and clear. 

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Topics: Anticipatory, Leadership

Feb 21, 2018 11:00:00 AM

Are You Missing Opportunities Right in Front of You?

I frantically looked for the hair dryer as I was already 15 minutes late to meet our team to prepare for an important presentation that morning. As I turned the place upside down, I thought—I know this nice resort provides a hair dryer in every room. Now it only takes me about 60 seconds to “style” my hair, but it does better when blow-dried.

After looking in all of the usual places in the bathroom, I continued my search in the closet and then to the rest of the room. Having exhausted all known possibilities, I picked up the phone and hit the button for housekeeping.

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Topics: Focus, Anticipatory, Leadership

Feb 7, 2018 11:30:00 AM

Reframing Our Beliefs

I simply can’t get away from this Mark Twain quote about life, “It’s not what we don’t know that gets us in trouble, it’s what we know for sure that just ain’t so!” This has proven true so many times in my life and I always seem to be in the ditch before I even realize my treasured beliefs might not be right.

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Topics: Anticipatory, Leadership

Jan 31, 2018 10:30:00 AM

Listening is Caring

Do you ever have those moments when something strikes you as profound, but as you reflect on it you realize—well that’s just common sense? Why am I just realizing this? “Listening is caring” is profound for me simply because I had never intentionally connected the dots.

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Topics: Compassion, Listening, Leadership

Nov 15, 2017 10:30:00 AM

Major Obstacles to More Advisory Services

Recently, I was fortunate to participate in an intense brainstorming session on the future of our profession with six other top 100 CPA managing partners. One of the hot topics was the very evident need for our profession to provide more advisory insights and services to our clients. With oncoming automation around data input and analysis, we know our services need to evolve into more advisory type services. We discussed that our "trusted advisor" status is anchored too closely to compliance, transactional and historical type services. Primarily, we have been a very responsive profession where few have consistently served as proactive strategic advisors.

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Topics: Focus, Anticipatory, Leadership

Oct 25, 2017 12:02:32 PM

Face Your Fear and Reach Your Full Potential

People ask me, “Joey, aren’t you scared of this massive fast-moving change and exponential technology transformation?” The quick answer is YES, absolutely! I really think a professional would have to be in denial to not be afraid of what is in front of us. It reminds me of the first time I jumped on a big street bike.

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Topics: Growth, Leadership

Oct 11, 2017 11:30:00 AM

Are You Prepared for Accelerated Change?

Springtime was always associated with a garden when I was growing up. Even today, garden fresh vegetables are simply divine and one of my favorite meals. Every spring my mouth waters waiting on that first home-grown tomato.

It was in the family garden where I lost the end of my left thumb. It’s attached back now, but it’s not the prettiest thumb you will ever see. Even to this day, when I take pictures, I feel myself slipping that thumb inside of my hand and out of sight. My grandkids routinely ask me, “What happened to your thumb, Pops?” “Does it hurt?” “Let me see your boo-boo!”

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Topics: Anticipatory, Leadership

Sep 20, 2017 11:00:00 AM

Innovation Requires Focused Leadership: Part 3 of Building a Culture of Innovation

Innovation is a key to our future success, and we can build a culture of innovation within our own teams. This 3-part series explores what it means to build a truly innovative culture at your business or firm. Make sure to read Choosing to be Open Minded, Part 1 of Building a Culture of Innovation, and Culture Leads Innovation, which is Part 2 of Building a Culture of Innovation to understand the entire journey.

Recently, when Tom Hood addressed our partners at our annual partner retreat, he helped us understand what type of leadership is required today when we are faced with such a disruptive rapid transformation. Today, every organization must be innovative and must have an incredible commitment to learning in order to remain relevant. Someone said, “survival is not mandatory.” And unless we become extremely focused as leaders, we will miss an amazing opportunity for growth. This rapid transformation brings an abundance of opportunities to leaders and firms that are focused. It also means that everyone leads, but our top leadership must be intensely focused. 

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Topics: Focus, Culture, Leadership

Sep 13, 2017 1:30:00 PM

Culture Leads Innovation: Part 2 of Building a Culture of Innovation

Innovation is a key to our future success, and we can build a culture of innovation within our own teams. This 3-part series explores what it means to build a truly innovative culture at your business or firm. Make sure to read Choosing to be Open Minded, Part 1 of Building a Culture of Innovation, to understand the entire journey.

Sunday, I went to a church where my son Brandon and his family attend. CeCe was not feeling well so I was meeting Brandon, Margie and the kids there. On the way to the church, I got a text that they were not going to make it as they had been up all night with the baby. Sully (Sullivant) is four months old now and our sixth grandkid. As I sat in the parking lot realizing I barely knew anyone at this church, I started thinking about heading home. I did not have a sense of belonging and was really dreading having to meet a lot of new people or explain why I was alone visiting today. Lots of excuses go through our minds when we do not have that sense of security—our sense of belonging.  

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Topics: Culture, Sense of Belonging, Leadership

Sep 6, 2017 11:00:00 AM

Choosing to be Open Minded: Part 1 of Building a Culture of Innovation

Innovation is a key to our future success, and we can help build a culture of innovation within our own teams. This three-part series explores what it means to build a truly innovative culture at your business or firm.

Yes, I am tired of hearing about our world being transformed. I really am. I am also tired of hearing my wife, CeCe (a nickname from our grandkids), coach me on better eating habits by challenging my legacy thinking that if it’s healthy food, two or three servings will not hurt me. Does she get on my nerves at times? Yes! Has she helped me be more open minded about what it takes to eat healthier? Yes! I know that I owe her a big thanks for my progress (seven painful pounds so far) to getting healthier. I know at my age, my metabolism and body have changed, yet I want to cling to my old fun habits. My mind searches for things that support my old lifestyle and tries to stifle information that says I need to change. I realize that neither being tired of hearing about getting healthier or simply knowing about it is going to help me be any healthier. It’s time for me to be more open minded.

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Topics: Innovation, Forward Thinking, Leadership

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