I published a new article on LinkedIn today. It begins:
“I understand it is traditional in China to not always shop around for the best price. Instead, the focus is more on creating strong, lasting relationships—a solid team. Associate yourself with the right people, and your business will flourish.
“A good team involves two aspects: a professional team and your business team. The professional team involves individuals who are absolutely essential, but not generally worked with on a daily basis. Unless you have a very large business, professional team members will be individuals you consult with, but are not on your payroll. They include an attorney, accountant, and banker”…
“Key Principles for Selecting Your Professional Support Team”
(Comments, shares and likes are welcome.)
Thanks. There is a lot of practical wisdom in that article.
This is a really nice article. The analysis of the need for a good attorney, accountant and banker is well done.
However, in my understanding and experience, there is also a requirement for a fourth member of a professional team. Every business owner and head of household needs a good financial advisor. Unfortunately the need for financial advisors is often overlooked, and very few businesses or individuals have one.
A financial advisor is that person who can coordinate and integrate the activities of the first three team members. An attorney can help set up legal papers for succession planning, retaining key employees, employee retirement and benefit programs, etc. But it is the financial planner that helps the business owner choose the proper parameters for those programs in the context of his overall business. A good financial adviser is trained in financial tools that are good beyond the scope of an attorney.
Similarly, an accountant can help a business owner or individual plan how to lower taxes this year or next, but is not usually well equipped or trained how to help one plan for minimizing taxes over a lifetime. This is the specialty of a good financial advisor.
And a good banker (or mortgage broker) may help you with the best mortgages that the bank is offering. But his responsibility is to the bank. The financial advisor has a fiduciary responsibility to the individual business owner. This means putting the interests of the business owner over the personal interests of the financial advisor.
It is possible to set up and have mortgages that actually benefit the business owner as well as or even more than the bank. The financial advisor is uniquely situated to help the business owner get maximum advantage from his mortgages in ways that the banker is simply unable and usually untrained to do.
So yes, take the time you need to get the right people for the positions of attorney, accountant, and banker. But be sure to also find a competent financial advisor who will work with you for the long run.