Three weeks ago, I wrote about my quest to outsource some of my work. In particular, I wanted to outsource my bookkeeping, accounting, and tax filing; this work was fast becoming tedious.
Taking the advice of many of you, dear readers, I wrote up a concise description of my current bookkeeping and tax systems and a concise explanation of what I wanted help with.
Then I emailed five local accounting and tax advisory firms with a request to contact me. That was on a Sunday. Here’s what happened:
Firm 1 responded on Tuesday. I set up a call with them for Wednesday and I decided I didn’t like the attitude of the person I spoke with.
Firms 2–4 hadn’t responded by Thursday. That was despite one of them promising to respond within 24 hours and another promising to respond within 48 hours. So I called the general office phones for the other four firms. Did they get my email?
I couldn’t get someone on the line at Firm 2. They emailed me back a week later and I ignored them. And while Firms 3 & 4 confirmed that they got my emails, I never heard back.
Firm 5 responded on Wednesday; one of the partners called me. We had a great chat for about 15 minutes. The partner promised to take a look at my bookkeeping software and send me an estimate of the costs involved in doing the work. He duly did. Then we had another 25-minute phone call.
Guess which firm I hired?
This illustrates the importance of being organized. If you have a good task management system in place, things shouldn’t fall through the cracks this way. When an email comes in and you promised to respond within 48 hours, you set a deadline. Then your task manager warns you on time.
Unfortunately, three of the firms I reached out to appear to be rather disorganized. Not a great sign when you’re selling services that require attention to detail.
Fortunately, though, one firm was great and I now have an accountant.
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