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New Business Models in Accounting with Ed Kless
Episode 254th February 2022 • Accounting Influencers Podcast • Rob Brown (Accounting Influencers Roundtable - AIR)
00:00:00 00:33:27

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Episode 25. In today's interview, "New Business Models in Accounting with Ed Kless."

Ed Kless joined Sage in July of 2003 and is currently the senior director of partner development and strategy. He develops and delivers curriculum for Sage business partners on the art and practice of small business consulting including the Sage Consulting Academy, Business Strategy and Customer Experience Workshops.

He hosts the Sage Advice Podcast and co-hosts the VoiceAmerica TalkShow Network’s The Soul of Enterprise with Ron Baker, founder of the VeraSage Institute where Ed is also a senior fellow. Now, as well as being a popular speaker at accounting conferences Mark is also a frequent blogger and contributor to various accounting journals, websites and Linkedin. His practice-focused articles for AccountingWeb, have been viewed over one million times.

Key takeaways from this episode include:

》the evolution of the business model in professional firms

》freedom and accountability at work are the same thing – to have accountability at work, you’ve got to give people their freedom

》some software companies have made the transition to cloud successfully, such as Adobe, and Sage are following in their footsteps

》accounting firms have to contend not just with a technology shift but a change in their optimum business models

》a frightening thought – the pace of change right now is the slowest it will ever be

》what is the single biggest disruptive threat to businesses according to Andy Grove of Intel

》how Apple changed the business model for the way people acquired music and what accounting firms can learn from this

》why Darwin is misquoted on survival of the fittest biggest, and who really survives in the accounting and fintech world

》what should be a key strategy for progressive accounting firms to enable them to future proof and see what’s coming up on the horizon

》the ultimate starting strategy question for accounting leaders (hint - it involves value creation)

》why putting too much emphasis on different generations in the workplace is like ‘astrology for business’

》how profits come from taking risk and what you should do with your money if you don’t want to take a risk

》the 3 types of risk that businesses can take (courtesy of Peter Drucker) and why they are hard to identify

》the single biggest reason why many accounting firms are not ready to move to the cloud

》why the business model of ‘we sell time’ is dying in accounting firms

》why so many accountants are not going into accounting firms but going into industry

》the difference between value, price and cost in any transaction

》having the benefit conversation and the value conversation to draw out value from clients

》why the next 5-10 years will see the virtual elimination of compliance work for accountants

》why accountants are positioned well for advisory, but bookkeepers are positioned even better

'Adaptability should be a key strategy for progressive #accounting firms - seeing what's coming up on the horizon' says @edkless on the Accounting Influencers Podcast #accountancy #accountex #advisory #accountinginsight

Ed is a contributor to industry publications, including the Journal of Accountancy, Harvard Business Review and, and has spoken at many conferences worldwide on project management, pricing, and knowledge workers. He is also active in the Information Technology Alliance (ITA) and was named to Accounting Today’s list of the 100 Most Influential People in Accounting for 2019. He lives north of Dallas with his wife and two children and ran for Texas State Senate in 2010 and 2012 as a Libertarian. Ed’s blog is at and you can contact Ed directly here:

Ed on LinkedIn

Ed on Twitter


The Accounting Influencers Podcast is a CPE-accredited daily radio-style show with four segments coming out every Monday which are repeated on the other 4 weekdays as standalone episodes, plus a bonus 'from the client's perspective' episode on Saturdays. On Sundays, listeners get a short min trailer for the coming week's episodes.

Every Tuesday the show gives you a relevant news topic from the accounting and fintech world with a direct application to accountants, CPAs and bookkeepers. Great to stay informed and build your commercial acumen.

Every Wednesday and Friday, we feature an uncut interview with top authors, leaders, thinkers and performers in the accounting and fintech world.

Every Thursday the show gives you a practical 'here's what works' tips concerning a key challenge, need or strategy for accountants, CPAs and bookkeepers. Great to stay current and keep your skills topped up.

Finally, every Saturday gives listeners a bonus episode which focuses on the buyers of accounting services - the clients themselves. In particular how they feel, react to and experience their interactions with accountants. That includes why they buy or don't buy, why they move or stay and why they think how they think about you, your firm, your prices and your offerings.

Martin and Rob love to hear from the show's 20,000 unique listeners in 144 countries around the world. If you like the show, leave a review wherever you listen, and please recommend the show to your friends and colleagues.



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