From time to time as I travel around Australia seeing clients and the like I make an offer to accounting firms that I bump into to come and present the key findings of the book I authored last year titled “What do Accounting Clients Really Want?” I do this for no charge. However, I really like it when they give me a sandwich to munch on.
I’m travelling to another mainland city next week and wanted to meet with the managing partner of a top ten accounting firm. I know this firm’s national network quite well. If he was interested I was more than happy to present to his partners/staff. If there was no interest I suggested in my last email that perhaps we could get together over a coffee and chat about subjects of mutual interest. So over the last couple of weeks I sent two emails and followed up with a phone call and got no response. Which I thought was odd.
Never wanting to lose the opportunity to meet someone new I tried one more time and phone the managing partner’s office. Within a couple of rings he picked up. I explained in a polite tone who I was, referring back to the dates of my emails and my phone message. The reply he gave me make my jaw drop.
“I would have thought that my non-response to your emails and phone message would have told you I have no interest.” He stated in a slow and clear manner.
I replied that I thought a person of his station as the managing partner of a top 10 accounting firm would have had the professionalism to write me a one line email saying “thank you, but no thank you.”
If I had a second jaw it too would have dropped in reaction to what was then said by the managing partner. He stated, “I’ve been accussed of being too curt in my use of email. So there is no point sending you one”
Hmmm …. in other words our managing partner “doesn’t do email.” How disappointing that this particular chap is not comfortable with the no.1 communication medium in business – not just now but for the last 15 years!
Its guys like this that reinforce the image that the accounting profession is behind the times 🙁
All my best,