You’re on your own- Your bankers and accountants know almost nothing that will help you move ahead

January 6, 2011

in Business Development

As a bloke who has built a few businesses up from nothing to sale, starting with no brand, no clients, no capital, no support and often, no idea how hard it is, there are just a few things I have learned that are worth knowing.

There are also many that aren’t, such as- Coventry (in the UK) has the worst ring road in the world; and just because a company makes the most reliable cars in the universe, it doesn’t mean that they won’t lose your invoice 11 times and take 2 years to pay you for a £1200 piece of work.

Now here’s the thing that some of you, just starting out with your own business might benefit from knowing- Find people who can give you advice that you can trust- that trusted advisor of legend, and you’re quids in.  But as a rule of thumb, if you’re paying someone for advice, beware!

In my experience, accountants give you options that you already knew and are very unwilling to move past ‘options’ to suggestions.  Lawyers have the service ethic of a hungry street-dog and will work really hard to get your work then charge you £1000 and hour ‘to familiarise themselves with the scenario’. And your faithful employees tend to have loads of suggestions as to what the business should do when all’s going well, but as soon as you really need advice, the room falls silent.  And once again you’re on your own.

What can you do? Get used to it.  Marry well, and ask for advice from strangers on trains.

Jim Harvey

Jim Harvey

Managing Director at The Message Business
Jim is the MD of The Message Business, a company which helps FTSE 100 companies to sell themselves, and their products better. Speech writer, Prezi trainer and designer, coach and consultant, Jim also finds time to be a proud father and husband.
Jim Harvey

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