“I’m actually making more money”: From a team of six down to one all while maintaining her revenue

After running out of steam from starting, running and growing her own accounting practice for more than 10 years, Nicole Farrell decided she needed some time off. 

Almost two years on from selling her business, Farrell hasn’t quite found that time to herself, and couldn’t be more pleased with her choice. 

“It’s been a rollercoaster. I was supposed to take a year off and it didn’t happen,” Farrell tells SmartCompany. 

Farrell had planned to complete an MBA while she took time to consider her next step. She wanted to get out of the accounting business and look at a new career move. 

As people soon found out she was on the market, the opportunities started to roll in. Now Farrell operates as a consultant for larger businesses looking to make changes. 

Thinking about your next step? Learn more about how the IPA Program feeds into the Deakin University MBA. 

“I haven’t been able to escape it yet; still in a bit of high demand,” Farrell says. Yet the change in roles – from running a team in an accounting firm to operating as a sole-trader, supported with the knowledge from her Master of Business Administration (MBA) – has forced her to grow. 

Farrell completed her MBA at Deakin University, after finishing the Pathways Program (Stage 1). She says the MBA taught her about the importance of practice management and how to do it properly. 

“I’ve probably been able to fine tune what used to take me eight hours to do a job, I can now do in two hours,” Farrell says. 

“I had a practice with staff and everything, but my revenue is on par with having six staff and I’m just doing it all by myself now. So, I’m not losing money, I’m actually making more money because I’m more effective.” 

It’s about your own personal goals

Most business owners who complete an MBA find it builds on their existing business knowledge. It adds context and gives people the confidence to make decisions without second guessing themselves. 

Debra Rieniets came to the MBA with more than 20 years’ experience running her own business. 

“I’ve got a lot of experience, and when I went through university, we had a very different system to what we have now,” Rieniets says. “So, this has given me the opportunity to put all those experiences [together] to consolidate the experience and the education into a format that is recognised by other people.”

For people thinking about their future, asking themselves ‘what’s next?’, and possibly looking to move into the corporate world, the MBA provides you with an internationally recognised qualification.

Depending on the stage of your career and desired learning goals, the MBA via the IPA Program can be tailored to your individual needs. 

“I was able to prove myself during my masters, I was able to create new friends, as well as improve my network,” Rieniets says. “I’ve always had really good IT skills, but now I have a whole different level of IT ability because we’ve learnt and did so much with technology.”

No matter what your goals are, attaining an MBA through the IPA Program can help you develop your skills and networks to ensure you’re prepared for the next step in your career. 

If you’re thinking about the next step in your career, find out how the IPA Program can support your goals.

Institute of Public Accountants

The IPA is a global accounting association dedicated to drive benefits and value for its 35,000 members. Our passion is small business, we understand what it takes to run a successful accounting practice.

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