What's Next For Accounting? - Issue #126

✅ 6 Tips to Look Your Best on Video

1. Avoid a perpendicular background - We square up to the wall behind us, but this creates an uninteresting background without depth. If possible lean into angles, hallways or anything that'll give you more depth, and

2. Learn to edit - You think this will take you more time, but the truth is the opposite. With easy built-in editing from apps like Loom, it's trivial to remove mistakes. Two examples:

  • Person 1 doesn't want to spend more time than is necessary and will just shoot a single so-so take. It ends up taking a bunch of attempts because they make mistakes 🐢

  • Person 2 records their video once, simply repeating themselves after making any mistakes, but doing so in a single recording. Then they select & remove the mistakes at the end 🐇

3. Don't put light directly in front of you - If possible position any lights you use, or the window somewhere between 1 and 3 o'clock. Well-lit shots have shadows, "fall-off" where one side of the face is darker than the other. A light directly in front of you creates a flatly lit face without distinct features

4. Eyes should be 2/3rds up the frame - Often folks are too low in the frame, because the webcam's on top of then monitor. Angle it so your eyes are well above the midway point

5. The camera should be just below eye level - Because most people put the webcam on top of their monitor, the perspective will be downward pointing. This has a big impact on how you're perceived. Consider monitor arms that'll make it easy to raise or lower your display, or a little freestanding desk tripod to get that webcam just below eye level

6. Practice makes perfect - If you're leaning into video, oftentimes fixating on this sort of thing will keep you from making videos in the first place. Optimize for repetitions, because more important than aesthetics will always be how you come through as a person

On the pod we ran through 16 tips to spice up that webcam Audio Video

💰 Specialization Of The Week

Summer Camps
Annual revenues $500k to $25M.
Key Pain Point: Cyclical cash flow & compliance

5 ways to build this one from scratch:

Partner with the American Camp Association (ACA) to develop resources for new business owners. Contribute to their webinar series, and participate in their annual conferences.

There are a number of webinars in the space for camps big and small. Pitch topics to each of the webinars, offering to come on as a guest, and sponsor.

A quick google search yields 10+ consultants in the space. Weasel your way into their network by asking how you can support them with. you accounting/tax compliance/tech integration expertise.

There are also a few monthly magazines around the business of camps. They feature success camp runners, and other folks like you in the ecosystem.

There are a few big conferences each year, feature a full week of sessions. Pitch your own talk, but don't stop there. Offer to support the exhibitors, either in their booth or even on-stage if they have a speaking package, and you'll make a ton of connections.

If you enjoy exploring specializations, yesterday on the pod we built a new firm from scratch using many of the strategies above.

Summer camps not your thing? Here are 50 more specialization ideas, from personal chefs to virtual executive assistant agencies.

📅 This Week

  • We put a bunch of AI tools to the test to find the best AI for spreadsheets

  • You can now enable 2FA in ChatGPT - I’d like to enforce this for workspace members next

  • How to write cold DMs Audio Video

  • “The first AI software engineer”, Devin, offers a glimpse into what the future of AI accounting agents could look like

    • The agent reasons through tasks by writing & executing code, interacting with the user, and browsing the web to find documentation or answers to question it can’t answer itself

    • Imagine the same with a panel for your accounting or tax software, a panel navigating & annotating workpapers, etc

    • Agents like this will work on a problem until it’s solved, for as long as it takes, and you can run as many of them in parallel as you want

    • To really dig the knife in they had it complete jobs on Upwork

    • The first version of this likely won’t come from incumbent vendors, it’ll come from a new category of provider, one that’s building atop everyone else’s tools

  • In the weekly Q&A we covered remote work stipends, the least bad phone system, food in your keyboard and aligning partners on equipment policies Audio Video

  • This week we got the most wild robotics demo since the early Boston Dynamics days, the Figure 01

  • I’ll be keynoting PASBA’s spring conference in St Pete’s Beach if you want to come catch some rays with me after the deadline

  • The AICPA announces the 7 software co’s in its 2024 oops all AI startup accelerator cohort

😍 From The Community

My private peer networking community Realize for firm leaders, now capped at 500 members.

▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▯▯▯▯ 391/500 members