My Story

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Paul Pritchard

Paul founded the business in 2004 after becoming disillusioned with the service provided by other accountants.

His background is probably not one you would expect...

After leaving school, Paul trained to be a hairdresser. Within three years he had set up his own successful hairdressing business called The Cutting Edge. However, the service that he received from accountants left a lot to be desired. One accountant in particular did such a bad job things that Paul ended up in debt to HMRC and had to come back with a repayment schedule.

"This was a difficult time for me", says Paul. "I was struggling to get a relatively new business up and running and the last thing I needed was a huge tax bill and to have to try and find money that simply wasn't there. I repeatedly went back to my accountant with the issue, but he did nothing to sort out my problem."

The issue was that the accountant, although qualified, has completely miscalculated Paul's tax liability. He had actually underestimated the tax owed by a massive two thirds!

"I had been saving for my tax bill throughout the year and had actually put aside more of less the correct amount owed," Paul continues. "But because the accountant told me the bill was much lower, I reinvested the surplus in getting myself onto the property ladder. I kept getting demands from HMRC, but my accountant told me not to worry and assured me it was all in hand. It wasn't, and it finally resulted in me having to come up with a repayment plan. Needless to say, I never used that accountant again!"

But Paul's experience of accountants didn't end there...

"I kept searching for a new accountant but found the majority of them to be very patronising and intimidating. They would often use terminology that I didn't understand like depreciation, accruals and reconciliation. All very simple concepts as it turns out, but at the time it was like they were speaking another language! I didn't want to appear stupid so often sat there agreeing, but I would come out of meetings none the wiser".

When Paul got to his mid twenties he started to experience a lot of back and neck problems due to bad posture caused by hairdressing. During a routine visit to an osteopath the discussion turned to careers.

"My osteopath asked me why I was a hairdresser and wondered if could I imagine myself doing this for my whole working life," explains Paul. "I didn't have a good answer for that! So after my treatment I started to research how to change careers. Becoming an accountant seemed like the perfect career path for me. I was good at maths at school, and I now knew first hand exactly what sort of qualities business owners would look for in an accountant. So I took the plunge, and the rest, as they say, is history."

I now knew first hand exactly what sort of qualities business owners would look for in an accountant

It took Paul about eight years to qualify, and for most of that training period he juggled two careers. But he would never look back now, and the skills he learned as a hairdresser have been invaluable in helping him to build an award winning accountancy practice.

He is passionate about providing an outstanding experience to all his clients - something that he instills in his staff when they come to work for him, and that he reminds them of relentlessly. His previous bad experiences with accountants mean that he really understands what other business owners need, and he is able to deliver the high standards his clients expect and deserve.


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