In our last article we discussed the idea of Trusted Advisor. Whether in business or personal life, we all need a Trusted Advisor. We need to have a go-to person or company that is there to provide us with advice that we need. What is important is that the value of the advice we receive has to outweigh its cost.
A Trusted Advisor provides us with strategy and planning. We learn from our past, we live in today and need to be ready for tomorrow. Whether in business or personal life, we all need to plan. Successful planning sets out a goal and a course of action. If we have a Plan, as things change, the Plan changes. If we do not Plan, as changes happen, we have nothing to change. Not a good place to be.
Proper planning commits to paper. Whether by pen and pencil, or a Word document, setting your goals and writing out a plan is the first step. Secondly, plans work best when there is measurement and structured review. Our best Business Planning works with a quarterly review of what has happened, why it happened, what do we change, and what do we do in the next quarter. In some ways we act as a coach, a mentor and a strategist. We will set a goal and work towards it. The goals may change as situations change, but we have strategy.
Why not carry out the same proven recipe in our personal lives? Whether we are in school, starting a job, starting a family, buying a home, raising a family, approaching retirement, or in our golden years, there is a need to plan.
It does not mean a completely structured life, never straying from the plan. What planning should do is help us anticipate the known and the unknown. The Trusted Advisor is of great value here. You know the known, the Trusted Advisor can help with the unknown.
If your goal is to retire early, start the planning early. Want the kids to go to the best schools, start the plan for the future costs now. No one lives forever, so we should have a Will and an Estate Plan. These are life events that happen to all of us. What we need is advice on the “what ifs”. As Trusted Advisors that is where we can help. “What ifs” will happen. Being prepared should happen too!
We are the Trusted Advisors to many clients. We know the role and we can make a difference. It is more than tax, more than accounting, it is life.
Harold Johnson, CPA, CA