The dream of just about every new person joining a public accounting firm is to become a partner in their respective firm. That was my goal once I truly understood what public accounting was (and once I realized I wasn’t getting fired my first day).
While the job of a partner is stressful and busy, I believe certain personalities can handle it. I know I will be able to once I get elected. Getting elected is the hard part. It’s not easy to not only survive, but also thrive, during those long years of waiting.
I’ve heard people say there is no room for another partner; someone has to retire to make room for another partner. While there is some truth to that, I do not believe that is true in all instances. Why do I believe that?
If you want to be a partner, you can make your future. You can make it impossible for the partners to pass you up. How can you make your future?
Be a rainmaker!
Public accounting firms stress top-line revenue. Bringing in new clients and selling additional services to existing clients is what it’s all about. Yes, you have to service existing clients so they stay with the firm. If you’re just replacing work because you’re not servicing current clients, new clients won’t help the firm grow and you won’t make your future.
You bring in the revenue, you will make your future and be rewarded with becoming a partner.
Rainmakers and accountants do not necessarily go together though. In general, accountants are not salesmen. Accountants like to crunch numbers, not sell services. Anyway, that’s how it is at the beginning.
If you want to make your future, you have to get out of your comfort zone and sell. I’ve learned from many years in public accounting that there is a limit to the amount of new work that will fall in your lap. You’ve got to go find that work. You’ve got to sell it. You’ve got to service it.
Like many accountants, I began my career hoping to hide behind a computer and crunch numbers all day. However, my personality and confidence grew as my skills grew. I realized the fun part of public accounting is building relationships. And, regardless of the tactics you hear about, nothing sells more than relationships. That’s how you make your future.
You sell, you make your future. The partners in your firm cannot and will not ignore a rainmaker. They will recognize you will grow the firm. You will add to revenue. You will increase their earnings.
You have to believe you can do that. Do you believe you can? I know I can and I believe you can. You have the ability to make your future what you want it to be. When you start believing that, you will make it happen and discover you love your job even more.