Big Four & Leading Accounting and Consulting Firms – news, opinion and career opportunities for aspiring & current professionals & alumni

Category: Advisory and Consulting

Eight Reasons Why You Lose Clients – And What To Do About It (Part I)

Andrew Sobel New Headshot 2014

By Andrew Sobel, Big4 Guest Blogger

The playwright Oscar Wilde defined a gentleman as someone who “is never unintentionally rude.” Likewise, you never want to have a good client relationship end unintentionally and without a sound reason.

Unfortunately, relationships often avoidably come to an end. Clients usually just vote with their feet and don’t carefully explain to you why they [...]


Specialists Do Better Than Generalists. But Deep Generalists Do Even Better.

Andrew Sobel New Headshot 2014

By Andrew Sobel, Big4 Guest Blogger

The new wisdom is: Become a visible expert in a niche. If you do you’ll command high fees and be sought after. You’ll get noticed. You’ll out-compete generalists.

All true.

But even more true is this: Add some breadth to your depth, and then you’ll really shine. I call it the deep generalist. (Actually, someone else suggested [...]


The Importance of Breakthrough Moments in Relationships

Andrew Sobel New Headshot 2014

By Andrew Sobel, Big4 Guest Blogger

Regardless of what stage you’ve reached in a client relationship, you need to look for and seize what I call breakthrough moments. In examining the careers of great professionals, I have found there are always notable moments when they perform in extraordinary ways. The result is a major increase in their stature and in the [...]


Why Having A Great Brand Can Lead You to Fail in Sales

Andrew Sobel New Headshot 2014

By Andrew Sobel, Big4 Guest Blogger

So you have a strong brand. Congratulations.

You walk into a prospective client’s office feeling confident and self-assured. You bask in the trust and respect that a good brand confers.

But wait—this particular meeting may not be the bowl of cherries you expected. In fact, the executive you’re talking to may have a pre-conceived notion of who [...]


4 business development lies you need to stop believing if you are to rapidly grow a partner-sized client portfolio

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These four business development myths are rife within Big 4 and large firms. Believing them could be very dangerous for your career. Heather Townsend, co-author of The Go-To Expert and How to make partner and still have a life, explains why…

Business development, or should we actually call it ‘marketing and selling’, tends to be seen as a dark [...]


SMB IT – Mid Size Companies –Today’s IT Challenges

Timothy E. Reed

Timothy E. Reed

Despite their unique challenges, mid-size companies tend to have many of the same IT priorities as their much larger counterparts.  The IT Challenges mid-size organizations face today are complex.  A recent McKinsey poll of senior IT executives identified the following key IT challenges,

- Generate more value from Data

- Improve Security

- Reduce cost of [...]


Six Rules for Evoking Curiosity

Andrew Sobel

By Andrew Sobel, Big4 Guest Blogger

In the 1987 movie Wall Street, Charlie Sheen plays a young, ambitious broker named Bud Fox. He goes to see Gordon Gekko, a renowned financier–played by Michael Douglas—to pitch him stock ideas. At every turn, Gekko rebuffs him, telling him his ideas are either old news or just plain bad. Rejecting his final idea, Gekko [...]


Eight Client Listening Strategies You Can Implement Today

Andrew Sobel

By Andrew Sobel, Big4 Guest Blogger

Many executives tell me, “Of course we listen to our clients—we see them every week!” But those day-to-day interactions, while important, do not yield the kinds of in-depth information and feedback you need about your clients’ evolving needs and their perceptions of your relationship.

Here are eight ways you can start listening more systematically and deeply [...]


Do You Treat Your Old Clients As If They Were Brand New Ones?

Andrew Sobel

By Andrew Sobel, Big4 Guest Blogger

A marriage requires constant work and investment—just ask any couple that has successfully been together for 15 or 20 years. When a couple divorces, the partners will often look back and describe a long period of mutual neglect prior to the eruption of real acrimony.

The basis for successful marriages and successful long-term [...]


Are You Truly Independent From Your Clients?

Andrew Sobel

By Andrew Sobel, Big4 Guest Blogger

How would you handle this situation?

A client asks you to undertake a project that isn’t in your sweet spot of capabilities. It’s something you don’t have quite the right skills for.

OK, that’s easy. You probably are able to say “no” to the request and recommend someone else. And in doing so you’ll deepen the client’s [...]


5 smart tactics to use internal PR to accelerate your career in your firm

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Use these 5 smart tactics to accelerate your career in your Big 4 and large firm. Guest blog by Heather Townsend, author of The Go-To Expert and How to make partner and still have a life.

It can be tempting when your workload is high to just get your head down and do your work. In fact, that was [...]


How To Prepare For A Termination – What To Do When It Appears That Your Job Is In Jeopardy And You May Be Terminated

Gears interlocking

By Michael VanBruaene, Big4.com Guest Blogger

When you see and sense that you may be terminated in the near future, there are actions you can take to prepare for the termination and position yourself to successfully move forward.  It’s important that you have a mind-set that positions you to be effective in these challenging circumstances.  And if you stay you will be [...]


Why You Must Increase Your “Live Performances” with Clients

Andrew Sobel

By Andrew Sobel, Big4 Guest Blogger

Data and information are, by themselves, commodities. What matters is insight. And that’s why the live performance still reigns supreme.

I recently asked a lawyer to draft a contract document for me. In truth, I was tempted to cut corners, and find something on the Internet that I could adapt. Or, to ask a recent law [...]


The Secret to Turning Every Prospect into a Paying Client

Andrew Sobel

By Andrew Sobel, Big4 Guest Blogger

One of my clients wanted to do business with a major prospect. It was an important company which would be seen as a valuable, marquis client. The company told my client point-blank, “We’re not going to do business with you. We are already well-served.” For one year they kept calling on this prospective account. They [...]


Top Ten Articles And Tools For Advancing And Improving Your Organization

Target Man

By Michael VanBruaene, Big4.com Guest Blogger

Below are the ten articles and tools on my website that have been viewed the most in the past 12 months. Take a look.  They may be useful for your work.

1. Useful Performance Measures & Metrics – How To Measure Efficiency & Effectiveness.

http://www.advancingyourorganization.com/?p=1071.

2. [...]