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AICPA Article: How to build a better partner compensation plan
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Cost Free
Presentation Length 1.0 hour

Recorded DateJuly 10, 2014
CPE:Not available
(archived webinars do not offer CPE credits)
Course LevelIntermediate
Course Description

Compensation is one of the most difficult and emotional issues facing CPA firms today especially as firms struggle to create a “team of accountants” rather than just a collective group of “lone wolves.” The old days of entitlement – seniority and equity - are being pushed out by more performance-oriented compensation plans. This hour-long web-based discussion will focus on nine (9) key elements of any effective compensation plan.

A good compensation plan will align the partners with the firm’s strategic initiatives and reward those partners who are better performers and good firm citizens. To do this a firm must identify measurable goals for partners and create a performance management system that helps partners succeed. Performance goals need to be customized for each partner, they need to incorporate both independent and interdependent goals as well as goals that focus on current production and building future capacity for the firm.

This webinar is intended for partners and HR directors in multi-partner firms who want to examine the effectiveness of their existing compensation plan. Firms with at least 10 or more partners will benefit from the program. If you are not getting the desired results and behaviors from your existing plan, you will want to attend this web-based discussion.

Learning Objectives

  • Pros and Cons of Entitlement and Performance-based plans

  • The nuts & bolts inherent to any effective compensation plan

  • How to align goals with the firm’s strategic plans/goals/direction

  • How to create goals that are both independent and interdependent

  • Why having some subjective element in the plan is critical for success

  • Factors that may influence the choice of a compensation system (as a reflection of firm strategic goals)

Not logged

August Aquila is one of the profession’s key thought leaders. He works with professional service firms both large and small, in the US and abroad. As a former partner in a Top100 US accounting firm and a senior executive with American Express Tax & Business Services, Inc., August brings a wealth of hands-on experience to the table. In 2004, 2007, 2009 to 2015 he was selected as one of the “Top 100 Most Influential People in The Accounting Profession” by Accounting Today. In 2003 August was inducted into the Accounting Marketing Association Hall of Fame. He won the 1994 Lawler Award for the best Journal of Accountancy article (“How to Lose Clients without Really Trying”). For twenty-seven years August has advised professional services firms covering succession planning, mergers and acquisitions, compensation plan designs and partnership issues. He has written several books on managing professional services firms as well. Most recently: Engaging Partners in the Firm’s Future, What Successful Managing Partners Do, Performance Is Everything – The Why, What and How of Designing Compensation Plans (AICPA), Client at the Core: Marketing and Managing Today’s Professional Services Firm (John Wiley & Sons) and Compensation as a Strategic Asset: The New Paradigm (AICPA). He is a frequent speaker at legal and accounting conferences.

About Our Sponsor

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