Recently I attended a panel conversation on the Future of Work. There is no doubt that many industries are feeling the impact of disruption.
We have distributed teams, products that are changing the world that did not exist just a few years ago, university courses that are obs0lete. We have technology enabling change in the taxi industry (with Uber), the driverless car, cloud technology etc etc.
However whilst I think everybody would agree that there is massive disruption happening the world over. The future of work is going to look totally different in the next 10 years to what it is now.
Some industries more than others will face the forces of disruption more than others. Now one of those industries that is already experiencing and will experience a lot more is that off accounting. The Economist 18months ago stated it was a close to a near certain as possible of the industry totally changing.
But here comes the interesting part. How are you reacting to this?
The most common reactions I am seeing are :-
1. There is no problem – for instance tax is so complex there will be no chance people will not need an accountant. (Well I wonder what the integration of the ATO with Xero which is mooted is going to mean)
2. Yes they acknowledge disruption but change things superficially. This is the most common reaction and is just delaying the inevitable.
3. There are some who are exploring new business models. Unfortunately there are not enough of these.
At this panel when this topic was raised there were two options given :-
1. Get out
2. Go to a higher level
The choice is this stark. As Andy Grove of Intel fame is said to have stated – the best business model wins.
Going to a higher level is the perfect advice. Accountants have great skills to help their clients and yet they are so caught up in the compliance work it is hurting their business.
You must recognise that disruption is here and instead of changing things superficially look at how you can take your business to a higher level.