Opportunity knocks, again

OPPORTUNITY: a time or set of circumstances that makes it possible to do something. The opposite of which is usually described as misfortune, tragedy and failure.
PESSIMIST: is a mental attitude in which an undesirable outcome is anticipated from a given situation.
OPTIMIST: is inclined to be hopeful and to expect good outcomes from a given situation.
I my opinion these three words shape the way we react to a changing business environment and it is worth pausing to reflect on where we fit on the sliding scale?

Opportunity/Optimist

This is one extreme position. With these beliefs there is always a tendency to “look on the bright side of life”, to search for outcomes that prove the belief that there is always win-win outcome to any given situation. At it’s most effective, this combination drives innovation, it’s a creative force. At its most ineffective, this combination would have us drive off the white cliffs confident in the belief that the cliff edge is an illusion and the road continues into the wide blue yonder.

Misfortune/Pessimist

At this extreme, we cannot cope with the idea of a constructive outcome, the downside risks are the only criteria that seem to hold water. Pessimist would not even get in the car, they would simply watch the unfortunate spectacle unwind and feel an agreeable sense that the universe has once again proved that misfortune, tragedy and failure have prevailed.

Where do you sit on this scale?

Take a few minutes to consider where you sit on the seesaw that determines your reaction to changing circumstances.

I like the analogy of the seesaw. It’s easy to conceptualise that at either extreme we experience the most movement: for movement you could substitute the range of our feelings or the inability to appreciate an opposite point on view. In fact, there is point, a fulcrum point, half-way between the two, where there is relatively no movement, and this, I believe, is where we need to sit when making decisions about our future courses of action.

If we are optimistic and opportunistic in outlook we should draw breath and see if the opposite point of view offers any constructive checks and balances that will allow us to reach a sensible conclusion. And the same process would apply to the pessimists if they drew breath and took stock of the optimists point of view.

Taking a fresh look at current challenges

This week, the outcome of the Brexit conundrum should be decided. Next month, MTD for VAT kicks off. Next year, we may see MTD rolled out to embrace the upload of accounts data. Eventually, I am sure that HMRC will pursue Pay as You Go – quarterly payment – of self-assessment liabilities. There is a LOT of change in the air for the accountancy profession and it’s time that practitioners lifted their heads from the daily grind, aware of their tendency towards the above dichotomy, and figure out just how they are going to respond.

Fee Building

In conjunction with feedback from practitioners, I am writing a planning resource that firms can use to rise to these challenges. It examines the possibilities to re-frame existing, recurring – and mostly compliance – services, and add a bunch of new recurring services. I am hopeful that my approach will prove useful, and profitable, to both the optimists and pessimists out there…

I should have this ready to launch before the end of this month.

– posted by Bob Edwards, 12 March 2019.

 

Bob Edwards

Bob has been working with practices across the UK offering novel ways to improve cross-sales and increase new client acquisitions. He is also interested in "step changes" in legislation that offer challenges, and therefore opportunities, for practitioners to provide new recurring and one-off support services to clients.

1 thought on “Opportunity knocks, again”

  1. Bob
    Totally agree with you regarding the future for MTD and Pay as you go. The system of Corp Tax payments on account for large companies will be rolled down to all ompanies, partnerships and sole-traders eventually, probably based on quarterly on-line filings and likely to be enforced by a substantial and punative penalty regime. A fantastic opportunity if you embrace it, but God help you if you try to muddle through.

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