Practical advice for scaling your accounting firm with Kenji Kuramoto

Kenji and I had an awesome conversation I’m excited to share with you guys. I really wanted to get into how he grew his accounting firm and his advice for how you can scale your own…not to mention… He has some amazing key insights on attracting and retaining staff. 

Kenji is the Founder and CEO of Acuity which builds and maintains financial functions for innovative entrepreneurs. Acuity has been named one of Accounting Today’s Top Firms For Technology and Top Firms To Work For. Through Acuity, he’s provided thousands of companies with a full range of financial solutions from high-level strategic financial counsel through its fractional CFO practice all the way to virtualized bookkeeping and tax services. 

In this podcast Kenji details how he built a business he wants to work in, which in turn attracted key staff.  Acuity no longer runs with Kenji in the day to day and that was a big and somewhat challenging shift which we discussed. He says one of the most important strategies he enacted was letting go to his employees and creating time for his personal life. He didn’t want to own a firm that had him sacrificing being present for his young family and he didn’t want that for the people who worked for him either.

Kanji views the accounting profession as one filled with “knowledge workers” and knowledge workers are praised for their output of quality work, not the amount of time dedicated to labor. He offers his staff flexible work hours, and flexible working environments. He’s been virtual for nearly a decade and that has afforded him a staff he doesn’t need to micromanage and a much larger pool of interested employees.

Kanji also discusses the tech that allows his knowledge workers to focus on complex thinking tasks without being bogged down by busy paperwork. He has some good insight into software he thinks is useful for his team. 

There was a lot to take away in our chat about how to break through growth plateaus, and building a competent team. He and I align a lot on what we think helps accountants offer great service to clients, while creating a healthy work environment for the owner and the whole team. 

You can take a listen on the player or watch the recorded version here

Time Stamps: 

0:39 – Kenji’s Background

5:14 – How did your public experience build your current career?

8:38 – How did you get into the tech space? How did it start for you?

14:37 –  Growth – What was the growth stage like for you, was it a quick ramp up? 

17:13 – Scaling – What advice would you give to someone who’s scaling a cloud firm or scaling quickly? 

23:16 – Delegation – In your growth, what was the hardest position to let go?

25:43 – When you let go, did new exciting stuff continue to show up? 

28:04 – Staffing – Success Drivers for having a good team/great culture

32:14 – Tech – What are you excited or nervous about in terms of tech coming?

40:36 – Book recommendation – Grit by Angela Duckworth & Be 2.0 (Beyond Entrepreneurship 2.0) by Jim Collins

43:03 – Advice – One little bit of advice you wish you had when you started a firm

45:59 – Kenji’s socials

https://acuity.co/ 

https://www.linkedin.com/in/kenjikuramoto/