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 P R O F E S S I O N A L . . . C O N T R O L L E R S

 

HOW TO USE THIS SITE (Advice to Browsers)
by Adrian W. Hollander, C.P.A., CISA, CIA, CBA, CFSA,
President of COMPLUS Inc. – Professional Controllers

send e-mail to: complusgrp@aol.com

 

The purpose of this site is to share information that we would otherwise have to send to you by fax or "snail-mail." We can now spend our time and money improving the content rather than reproducing obsolete "paper." We want to impress you and persuade you to join us, as a client or an associate, so we can help you to be a more effective competitor in your market. Our primary competitors are really individuals who are looking for full-time employment (where there really shouldn’t be a full-time job). We can do a better job for a lower price in this case.

Below there is a brief summary of the content of each page. To find what you’re looking for, scroll down the index focusing on the items marked in your community of interest. To view a specific page, click on either the name or the XX block. When you’re more familiar with this site, you may go directly from the index to an item. You may look at anything you wish. Each page provides a link back to (HOME) the main index. Some will provide links to related pages. To retrace your steps, simply click the "back-arrow" control on your browser tool bar. We hope that you will "bookmark" (add us to your FAVORITE places) the URL reference to our home page to make it easy for you to come back. This site will be undergoing improvement for a long time. The capabilities available on the internet are improving every few weeks. We are a constantly evolving entity ourselves. We’re going to try to help you keep up. We’ll share what we’ve learned how to do. (Even if you’re a big enough business to hire a full-time controller, don’t settle for a leader with less skill than any of us.)

At first a plain index was probably enough to figure out what was here. As more information has been added, though, we agreed that it had become harder to find what you’re looking for than we first thought. Generally we believe that most visitors to this site will fall into one (or more) of four general categories (communities of interest): (1) a prospective client, (2) a client currently being served, (3) a current associate, and (4) a person interested in becoming an associate. If you believe we should identify another "community," tell us; please send an e-mail. Of course, again, regardless of your general category, you may look at anything you wish. If you have insomnia, maybe we can solve that problem. Seriously, we believe in full disclosure. See if you can find another firm that will share as much. If there is something about us that you would like to know (and don’t see it, or can’t find it), tell us; please send an e-mail. If you believe that some issue should be categorized differently, tell us; please send an e-mail.

There is an e-mail reference on every page for your convenience. Please don’t be bashful. Submit constructive suggestions; they are very welcome. Compliments make us feel good, but they don’t help us to improve the site for you. Please tell us what you would like to see.

 

------- INDEX -------- Communities of Interest

 

You're the "Captain"

 

We're the "Navigator"

The owner/CEO is “in charge” (the Captain).  He/she is the decision-maker.  He/she owns the checkbook.  Yes, a good leader, especially in a free society, will take into account the interests of subordinates.  The job of the Controller, like a “Navigator,” is to enable the “Captain” to run the business without feeling blindfolded.  We will be the ally of the owner/CEO until we are rejected.  We will assist the owner with his/her “agenda,” without being just a “yes-man.”  We will refuse to do anything that is illegal or immoral (but we’ll stretch a point on fattening).  -- We want invitations to the parties, too.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

How to Use This Site

 

 

 

XX

 

To see what issues that (we believe) are specific to your community of interest, click on one of the XX blocks. Some items are shared by more than one community. Remember you may look at anything you wish. Associates, there are a few additional instructions.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

COMPLUS brochure

XX

 

 

 

XX

We admit it; this is promotional material. It’s intended to peak your interest in becoming a client or associate. You will want to know more, so look further.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

 Biography of Ted Hollander

 XX

 XX

 

 XX

 XX

Adrian W. (Ted) Hollander is the owner of COMPLUS and (yes, self-appointed) leader of the group of Professional Controllers in the Chicago area. Even though you may be served by another one of us, once you’re part of our group we’ll become as well acquainted as you’re willing.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

Articles by Ted Hollander

 XX

 XX

 

 XX

 XX

Adrian W. (Ted) Hollander has written numerous articles (some of which have actually been published).  Yes, this section is “vanity press.”  The opinions expressed here are solely the opinion of the author and not necessarily representative of the views of any of the organizations that Mr. Hollander serves or to which Mr. Hollander belongs.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

Associates

XX

XX

 

XX

XX

We are all seasoned pros. I’m sure that you will agree that our credentials are impressive. Associates -- Check the material being displayed periodically. Send changes as appropriate. Please send a portrait picture to include with your resume.  You can e-mail a .JPG file or send a photo for cropping and editing.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

 

 

 

XX

XX

The same questions are asked over and over and over:

Who do we want to serve?
How are we are organized?
How much selling is required?
What can’t be done while a part of the group?
What does it cost to join?
How do we get paid?
Why not just work alone?

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

A New Strategy …

XX

 

 

 

XX

This is an article by Adrian W. (Ted) Hollander and derived from one he wrote for the (then) Illinois CPA Society Newsjournal published in June 1990. It describes the justification for the "part-time controller."

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

How to Profit from Accounting

XX

 

 

 

XX

Accounting is often perceived as a cost to be reduced. If it’s done well, accounting is an investment. A good investment produces a positive return. Why continue with a bad one? A business will always pay for good accounting, one way or another. (Yes, this is a promotional piece.)

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

Professional Controller Services

XX

XX

 

XX

XX

These services are an example of what might be done by a COMPLUS Professional Controller.  Not all services are appropriate in all circumstances.  There may be some other services that might be appropriate even though they are not listed.  In a spirit of alliance with business ownership/leadership an appropriate set of tasks/duties will be defined for each client case.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

 References

 XX

 

 

 XX

 

Our clients are valued references.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

We Sell Alliance

XX

 

 

XX

XX

This article was written by Mr. Hollander to differentiate between the roles of the controller (especially a COMPLUS controller) and the "independent" CPA. Despite having similar basic skills, neither can (or should be permitted to) do both jobs at the same time. Conflict of interest is a serious matter.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

Consultant or "Spy" (Advice)

XX

 

 

XX

XX

This article was written by Mr. Hollander to differentiate between the roles of the controller (especially a COMPLUS controller) and a consultant. The reference is a joke, but illustrates the importance of "alliance" and avoidance of conflict of interest.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

We’re Different (Advice)

XX

 

 

XX

XX

If we’re just like everybody else, we’re just a commodity.  The differences among commodity offerings are availability and price.  We’re NOT at commodity.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

Communication (Advice)

 

XX

 

XX

 

Accountants are in the "communication" business. (Ironically, the stereotype is that we are not very good at it.) Our best role is to help the owner to run the business without feeling blindfolded. The responsibility for communication is "bottom-->up." A leader should never be surprised by "bad news." Let’s encourage the business owner to agree to deal with the news and not just to shoot the messenger." We try not live down to the stereotype.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

 Client Development (Advice)

 

 

 

 XX

 

If we leave a client with no reason to come back, the engagement is over, but don’t make unnecessary work. Make the owner to feel like he/she is the only client we have, even though he/she knows better.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

 We Can All Sell For Each Other (Advice)

 

 

 

 XX

 

Two of the reasons for joining the group involve marketing. Producing just a name, address and phone number, by themselves, however, have very little value. A form accompanies the essay to expedite implementation.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

 A Strategy for Catching Up (Advice)

 

 

 

 XX

 

We almost never inherit an accounting function that is well run and current. An owner who is satisfied with the accounting work just doesn’t shop for new help. When the going gets tough,

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

What Do We Cost? (Advice)

 XX

 

 

 XX

 

Billing rates are never an easy subject to discuss!   However ...

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

The ART in "Start" (Advice)

 

 

 

 XX

 

Read about interviewing and selling tips for talking to prospects (company owners).

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

        Coaching with Questions? (Advice)

 

 

 

 XX

 

If we “tell” the owner what to (or not to) do, might we be perceived as a challenger by the owner? 

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

Associate Agreement

 

 

 

XX

XX

This is the full text. We’re still working on better use of electronics. Applicants, for now, print it, sign it, and mail it.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

 Client Agreement

 XX

 XX

 

 XX

 

This is the full text. Associates, print it, attach rate schedule, get client’s signature, and mail it.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

 Rate Schedule

 XX

 XX

 

 XX

 XX

Two schedules: (1) for new clients, (2) for existing clients. We are a bargain. There are times when more may be justifiable.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

 Interview Questions – Controllers

XX

 

 

 XX

XX

The stereotype of an accountant will not pass this test, and many have not.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

 Interview Questions – Bookkeepers

 

 XX

 

 XX

 

We want willing workers and team players, who will do as they are asked but stop short of being like a "lemming."

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

 Interview Questions – CPA Firms

 

 XX

 

 XX

 

We want talented affordable, independent professional accounting services.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

 Interview Questions – Bankers

 

XX

 

 XX

 

We want bankers who are as willing as we to be part of the solution and not part of the problem.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

 Interview Questions – Financial Planners

 

XX

 

 XX

 

We want financial advisors who can be more help than just selling us investments or insurance products.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

 Interview Questions – IT Services

 

XX

 

XX

 

We want skillful, reliable, consistent, proactive help.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

 Interview Questions – Sales People

 

XX

 

XX

 

We want someone who can deliver results.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

 Interview Questions – Clients

 

 

 

 XX

 

We’re looking for a way to serve as an ally for the OWNER and a reason to start.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

 Checklist for Assessing Accounting System

 XX

 

 

 XX

 

When starting a new job, the most appropriate day-1 work is to take "inventory."

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

Prospective Client Questionnaire

 

 

 

XX

 

This is a direct reference to the form accompanying "We Can All Sell of Each Other."

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

Promotion Letters

 

 

 

XX

 

Examples of letters used for direct mail and responses to prospect inquiries, questions and objections.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

Record Retention Schedule

 

XX

 

XX

 

Source:   SWARTZ RETSON, a Professional Corporation  --------------------  February 9, 1996

Any questions?  Please call (219) 769-3616 or email to rswartz@pla-net.net

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

Business Plan Preparation

 

XX

 

XX

 

The owner should write his/her own business plan.  For help, see a suggested outline -- included.

For examples -- consider reading several prospectuses that can be obtained from almost any stock broker.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

Board of Directors Selection Issues

 

XX

 

XX

 

Selecting a Board of Directors is a set of very personal choices.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

HYPERLINKS to other interesting sites

XX

XX

 

XX

XX

Here is the "portal" page. There are instructions for how to go and come back. Please tell us of other links you would like.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

COMING EVENTS

XX

XX

 

XX

XX

"Networking" is a very valuable skill for person in any profession. These event opportunities should be especially valuable.

 

PROSPECT

CLIENT

 

ASSOCIATE

APPLICANT

 

  send e-mail to: complusgrp@aol.com

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