by Bob Poole on August 3, 2012

There are good accountants and not-so-good accountants.

There are good lawyers and not-so-so-lawyers.

There are good bankers and not-so-good-bankers.

You’ll have to choose based on references and your own intuition – at least the first time you use their services.

If you own your own business or are thinking of starting one, then the the most important thing to always remember about lawyers, bankers, and accountants is that they offer legal, accounting, and banking services.

Get your business advice from someone who has successfully been there and done that.

And, never, ever get it from a professor of business at the local university.

Those who can — do. Those who can’t — teach. ~H. L. Mencken

image compliments of laughlin

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Elaine Spitz August 3, 2012 at 1:14 pm

I agree that those who have experience may often have the best insight. What is missing here is that quite often the professor of business at your local university may have exactly the kind of experience that will help you. I know that guy!
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Bob Poole August 6, 2012 at 1:17 pm

I’m sure there are exceptions, Elaine. I’m using my own experience to come to those conclusions. One thing that I’ve seen happen over-and-over again is someone going to a bank looking for a loan – often they want to talk SBA loan. The next thing you know this person gets directed by the banker to his associate who teaches business at a local college/university. The banker tells him he needs a plan and that the business professor is the best bet. Often this discussion takes on a tone of “follow my advice” if you want any chance of the loan. The next thing that happens is the would-be business owner spends thousands for a useless “plan” that gets put into the bottom drawer of a file cabinet never to be used again.

I’ve heard this from the horse’s mouth too many times.

Marvin Kane August 7, 2012 at 8:05 am

I know what you mean Bob. What I have found, and forgive me for generalizing, is that the folks giving advice are often the ones who tried but failed in business and, bitter and demoralized, now make a living “helping” others. Beware of those. Your intuition is your best friend here.

Bob Poole August 7, 2012 at 10:12 am

Intuition usually set off warnings in most of the people who told me this same story. However, some felt intimidated by the banker and paid for the business consulting because they thought they’d never get the loan otherwise.

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