There’s a little bit of a process if you want to work with me. One question that keeps coming up is, “How do we work with you?” We don’t just sign any old person on. So number one is that my firm primarily works with business owners. Business taxes are super complex. It’s not an easy thing that you can just do on Turbo Tax or just go to one of those big retail tax preparation firms. We like to do the complex stuff, so we work with a lot of business owners.

So the first thing you’re going to want to do if you are a business owner and need help with your taxes and accounting, is you’re going to want to schedule a free consultation. Now not all professionals do free initial consultations, but we do. And the reason is that you’re always going to work with me. Even if you deal with other people from my firm, you’re going to talk to me, and I have to make sure that we’re a good fit. So there are certain industries that we don’t really love to work with or can’t work with. And we have to screen some of that out. But I also want to make sure that personality-wise that we’re a good fit, because if you don’t like a fun accountant that’s going to make you laugh about things like taxes, then maybe go find somebody boring to work with and don’t work with me.
Now the next thing that you need to be prepared for is we need to look at what you’ve done in the past. So you’re going to want to make sure that you’ve got things ready, like your prior-year tax return for yourself, for your business, for your personal. And also we need to see your books. We need to see what kind of a condition they’re in. So we’re going to need access to… hopefully, you’re using QuickBooks Online or Xero, something online, a more modern system, not QuickBooks Desktop that we don’t work with anymore. We’ve retired that.
So that’s how we get started. And then what’s going to happen is if we decide we want to move forward, and if you like me and I like you, I will send you an engagement letter. And an engagement letter is basically a fancy term for a contract. I use a system that does both engagement letters and billing all wrapped up in one. So it’s super convenient. We try to make everything very easy for you guys to sign up and work with us. And then we get started. And then there’s an onboarding process, which is a little bit different. Don’t need to get into that just yet.
That’s the process. That’s how you’re going to start working with my firm. So go set up that initial consult, totally free. We’ll see if we’re a good fit and if we can help you, which I’m sure we can, and I can’t wait to work with you. So until we see you next time.

About the Author:

Bette Hochberger, CPA, CGMA
Bette is the founder of the firm that bears her name. After launching her career in private accounting with technology startups and nonprofits in Boston and Miami, she transitioned to Public Accounting at large regional firms. She founded her firm so she could focus on the needs of small business owners instead of chasing billable hours with large corporations.