If you had to start your business over today, what would you change?

Meeningfully —  June 15, 2017 — Leave a comment

In an interview with CNBC, self-made billionaire Mark Cuban, owner of the Dallas Mavericks and star of the hit ABC reality show “Shark Tank,” said that if he lost everything overnight, he could do it all again. Whilst he expressed doubts that he might be a billionaire again, he had no doubts that he would become a multimillionaire again.

Panel discussion

At the ACCA’s #SmartPractice Event on 19 May. From left to right: Joseph Alfred, Head of Policy at ACCA and moderator for the panel discussion (standing) ; Lau Kah Hee, Partner, Derrick Wong & Lim BC LLP (ACCA); Gajendran Vyapuri, Partner, EY Singapore; K G Tan, Managing Director, Precursor; Alan Chang, Managing Director, OA International; Shivaji Das, Partner and Head of Consulting (APAC), Frost & Sullivan; and Jocelyn Goh, Partner – Audit & Assurance, BDO and moderator for the panel discussion (standing)



If you had to start your business over today, what would you do differently?


Things are changing so fast, if you haven’t started thinking about it, you’re on the path to complacency

Thinking back to Brian Solis’s book “What’s the Future of Business?: Changing the Way Businesses Create Experiences”, the author highlights that customers today are more connected, empowered and demanding than ever, and so asks his readers,


(“WTF” is the author’s play on the words, “What’s The Future of business?”)

Today, customers are using more digital services than before; they’re becoming more data-driven and more self-service oriented.


Is the way you’re conducting business today relevant to your clients? Or even to your employees?


Last year, ACCA surveyed over 2,000 professionals for ‘Professional accountants – the future’ and found an urgent need for the industry to address changing expectations from businesses and governments. As the largest global accounting body in the world, ACCA has its ears on the ground and has long foreseen the impact technology would have on the accounting industry (either directly or indirectly through clients’ evolving business models).

[Read ACCA’s report – Business models of the future: emerging value creation.]

Rick Chan

Rick Chan, Head of Audit, Mazars, Singapore and Chairman of ACCA Practitioners Sub- Committee sharing about ACCA’s initiatives in developing the profession.

Historically, companies could just execute the same business models better than their competitors did in order to be successful. Today, with technology disruptions, business models are subject to rapid displacement, destruction and sometimes outright destruction.


On 19 May, in the spirit of advancing the profession, ACCA practitioners organised the ACCA Smart Practice Series for industry peers and business leaders to look at new business models; and to challenge themselves to look internally and externally to review how their own businesses should evolve.


Shivaji Das, Partner and Head of Consulting (APAC), Frost & Sullivan, encouraging business leaders to think about how they can ‘innovate to zero’ and re-think innovation.


Gajendran Vyapuri, Partner, EY Singapore sharing that business model innovation can also occur without technology development.

According to Shivaji Das, Partner and Head of Consulting (APAC) from Frost & Sullivan, Fortune 500 companies that invested in innovation grew exponentially compared to those that didn’t.  K. G. Tan, managing director of professional services firm Precursor leveraged technology to innovate his own business. He candidly shared at the event,


“We have a responsibility to our clients. Today, (as an industry) we are failing our clients. They need more from us as accountants…


As Professionals, we can be just as good as doctors. The difference is that doctors are using much better tools and advanced machines to help their patients and deliver greater value. We as an accounting industry must do the same as technology becomes available to us.”



K.G. Tan, Managing Director, Precursor, ranked as one of the “40 Under 40 Most Influential Accountants in Singapore” by the Singapore Business Review.


It’s important to note however, that K.G. isn’t selling a new product.

He’s creating a whole new world of opportunities – literally.

K.G. has reframed the concept of value creation. To achieve this he is building an ecosystem that would connect clients, vendors, employees and partners, with technology as his bridge. His vision and passion is what drives his firm. In 2013, Precursor ranked as the youngest company to become one of the top 25 accounting firms in Singapore.

So if you had to start your business over today, what would you change? And where would you look?

Would you…

  • Challenge your existing revenue model?
  • Re-look your customer engagement channels?
  • Re-evaluate your marketing? your target customers?

Feel free to share your thoughts on this post. If you want to open a discussion on this, we are happy to start a topic running on our Linkedin Page. Or simply follow-us to get updates on the next #SmartPractice event.


This post is written by Melissa Kay Thomas Partnerships Manager from the ACCA Singapore Employer Relations team. Working with Small Medium Practices and the Public Sector, she is passionate about helping  finance functions built talent capability to take on the challenges of the future economy. 


Join us on 19 July as we explore new business models at the ACCA Annual Conference with various industry and technology experts. Our VIP Minister Chan Chun Sing, Secretary-General of the NTUC and Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office will be delivering the keynote address and Q&A with conference delegates.

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