Unlock your Strategy Development Services By on Sep 1, 2023
One of the best ways accounting firms can expand their business advisory service offering is to provide strategy development services to clients. Not only does this set the client’s strategic business direction: it offers a variety of additional value-added engagement opportunities.
Perhaps the ideal first step is to undertake a strategic planning workshop on your own firm and use this planning session as a learning exercise that has a two-fold effect: firstly, you set the future direction for your firm and document SMART goals to be achieved and secondly what you do on your firm can be replicated on your clients businesses.
To get the strategic planning process moving in your firm you need to consider the following eight step process;
- Assess internal capabilities: Before offering strategic planning services, you should evaluate your own capabilities and expertise in this area. Determine if you have professionals with strategic planning experience or if they need to invest in training or hiring individuals with the necessary skills.
- Define service offerings: Once you have assessed your firm’s capabilities, clearly define the strategic planning services you intend to offer. This may include developing a comprehensive strategic plan, conducting market research, facilitating strategic planning workshops, or providing ongoing strategic guidance and support.
- Develop a framework or methodology: It is essential to establish a framework or methodology for your strategic planning services. This framework should outline the steps involved in the process, the tools utilised, and the deliverables provided to clients. Having a standardised approach enhances the firm’s credibility and ensures consistency in service delivery.
- Promote the value proposition: Clearly articulate the value proposition of your strategic planning services to potential planning clients. Highlight benefits such as improved decision-making, enhanced resource allocation, and long-term goal alignment. Emphasising your firm’s expertise in financial analysis and understanding of the economic environment positions you as valuable partners in strategic planning.
- Identify ideal clients: Identify the ideal clients for your strategic planning services. These may include small and medium-sized businesses, startups, or organisations in specific industries that could create a niche opportunity. Understanding the needs and challenges of target clients allows firms to tailor their services accordingly.
- Market and educate clients: Actively market your firm’s strategic planning services. This can be done through various channels, such as creating informative content on your website, hosting webinars or workshops, social media and thought leadership or networking with potential clients at industry events. By educating clients on the benefits of strategic planning and how it complements your existing accounting services, firms can generate interest and attract new clients that fit their ideal client profile.
- Collaborate with other professionals: Strategic planning often requires multidisciplinary expertise. To offer comprehensive strategic planning services, accounting firms should consider collaborating with professionals from other fields, such as financial planning, management consulting, human resources, or information technology. This collaborative approach ensures clients receive holistic guidance and support in their strategic planning efforts.
- Provide ongoing accountability and support: Strategic planning is an ongoing process, and your firm can offer ongoing support to clients. This may include periodic reviews and updates of the strategic plan, monitoring key performance indicators (KPIs), and providing guidance on course corrections if needed. Regular communication and engagement help build long-term relationships with clients and become the trusted advisor in their strategic planning journey.
Why not take the challenge, expand your business advisory offering, and help clients create clear strategic pathways to build profitable, cash strong, and more valuable businesses in the future?
To help you get started on this strategic journey with your practice and your client’s businesses see my Strategic Planning Enabled service here.
I would be happy to offer your firm a complimentary 45-minute online Strategic Planning Assessment and chat about the pathway forward and how to get this dynamic service working in your firm. Just email me at: [email protected] and we will organise a suitable day and time.