10 Actions express priorities. We do what we say we will, and work with honesty and clarity.
My main work, both within Wordscape and outside, is accounts. I fell into bookkeeping (as most bookkeepers do) by accident a few years back. I never intended to do accounts for a living. In fact, I positively pushed back against the idea, as my parents did the same job before they retired to travel the world. But genes are genes, and I suppose it was no real surprise to anyone that I was not only quite good at bookkeeping, but also enjoy it.
Although Wordscape’s business isn’t accounts, a lot of what I do as a bookkeeper can be compared directly to what the team does on a day to day basis, it’s just with words rather than numbers. In what I do, I must be honest and transparent. When the people I work for want to know whether their business is doing well and their hard work is paying off, they need to be confident that the figures on their reports are correct. But if there’s something they don’t understand, I need to be able to explain my methods and workings out (my maths teacher would be so proud), so that we can decide on the best way forward. If I make a mistake, I need to tell them what I’ve done, what actions will rectify the situation and what, if any, the implications are for their business.
Likewise, if a client trusts us with a project, we work with them to find out exactly what they need and when. We make it our business to understand their expectations and budgets. We will say if we think something won’t work as they think it might, and we’ll suggest ways to do things differently. We will ask questions and listen. And if we start on a project and something doesn’t quite work out to expectations, we’ll pick up the phone and tell them, and work out what happens next. Our clients want to know that their project is being looked after, just as my clients want to know their accounts are being looked after.
One of the things that people like about working with organised bookkeepers is that they know what needs doing when. They have a clear routine, whether that be filing VAT, running payroll, chasing outstanding invoices or paying PAYE on time. And these things are important. A priority, even. They’re important both for the health of the business – but they might also be a legal requirement, and not meeting the deadline for filing, and ensuring payments are up to date, causes lots of problems further down the line.
When we start a project, we set deadlines and agree on budgets. Not doing this causes problems. A much as our client needs to know what we’re going to do by when, so do we. We work on numerous projects at one time and need to plan our workload accordingly. Letting the important stuff drop isn’t going to help anyone, so we plan to make sure that printing and websites will be delivered, as they often take time. And that the content is researched, written, edited and proofed, so the projects can be delivered in a timely fashion. We make sure we are available at any time to go through our workings out and give progress reports and we will stick to the budgets agreed, because it’s in everybody’s interest that we do.
I’ve always prided myself on my honesty and it’s part of the reason people like me doing their accounts. I would much rather say something as soon as I notice a problem than try and bury it, hoping for the best. Wordscape works in the same way. We want to tell your story in the best way possible, so although it might be challenging at times, the result is always worth it for us, for you and for your business.
As I was told many times when I was growing up, if a job’s worth doing, it’s worth doing well. And with honesty and clarity (although I might have added that bit for circularity).