If you are the owner of a bookkeeping business, I’ve got news for you – YOU ARE AN ENTREPRENEUR. I know! It’s crazy, right?

Many of us bookkeepers fail to see ourselves as a business owner and an entrepreneur, as we rightly are. We see ourselves simply as bookkeepers and spend our days on a perpetual spinning wheel, going round in circles, busy as bumblebees, but not really going anywhere.

Sound familiar?

I’ve mentored many bookkeeping business owners and one thing that struck me was that one very common reason why we find ourselves at a standstill and not being able to push our boundaries in pursuit of growth, is not knowing the purpose of your business.

Why does your business exist?

Yes, for many of us, the most simple answer is that we want financial freedom. To escape the daily grind of being employed in a 9-to-5 job and missing out on time with family and loved ones. Perhaps you started a family and couldn’t find a job that fit with school pick-up and drop-off times so you decided to forge your own path and start your own bookkeeping business.

But I want to challenge you to consider a larger purpose. One that goes beyond your initial (selfish, personal) motivation for walking down this path. The purpose of a bookkeeping business ought to go beyond just making money and making your own hours. That purpose represents your business’ fundamental reason for existing.

This purpose reflects the importance that people (including you, your employees, and your clients) attach to your company’s work. It is what gives your business meaning and a sense of direction beyond the bottom line. Any bookkeeping business, no matter the size and scope of operation, should have a purpose to distinguish itself from the competition and to paint a clear picture of how and why customers need it.

To find your company’s purpose, you may begin to visualize the end game you wish to achieve. What do you want in five years? In ten years? In 20? What do you want for when you retire? Identifying this gives you something to strive for.

It is also important to ask yourself key questions that can help you determine the purpose of your business. Grab a piece of paper and a pen and write down your answers to these questions:

  1.       Why does the existence of your business matter?
  2.       What is the most important reason that your business exists? Why?
  3.       What would be lost if your business ceased to exist?
  4.       Why are you important to your clients?
  5.       Why would anyone dedicate their time, energy, and passion to your company?

If you’ve answered all five of the above questions, congratulations! Wow! How invigorating does it feel to feel a renewed sense of purpose for the work that you do every single day! Now that you have figured out the purpose of your business, you can start working towards pushing your boundaries and striving for excellence, because you now have a solid foundation to build your bookkeeping business and take it to where you envision it to be.

Now that you are ready to grow your bookkeeping business, learn more about what you need to do next to navigate your business through growth and profitability with my book Grow Profit Exit.


Katrina Aarsman (BAcc) built a successful bookkeeping business over 15 years and sold in 2015. She now focuses her energies in helping other business owners grow their bookkeeping business with an emphasis on automation. Katrina offers customised mentoring programs, strategy sessions, and webinars. She would love to connect with bookkeepers with a desire to grow.

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