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Partner Compensation Therapy Session: Part 2

Marc Rosenberg, CPA / May 15, 2020

This blog series is patterned after a terrific TV show from 2010, “In Treatment.”  The show brought us inside a psychologist’s office as he conducted weekly sessions with various patients.  Gabriel Byrne was masterful as the psychologist.  In this two-part series, the patient is 56-year-old Pat, the oldest of 8 partners in a $10M CPA…

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Partner Compensation Therapy Session: Part 1

Marc Rosenberg, CPA / May 11, 2020

This blog series is patterned after a terrific TV show from 2010, “In Treatment.”  The show brought us inside a psychologist’s office as he conducted weekly sessions with various patients.   Gabriel Byrne was masterful as the psychologist.  In this two-part series, the patient is 56-year-old Pat, the oldest of 8 partners in a $10M CPA…

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How to Move From Pay-Equal to Performance-Based Comp

Marc Rosenberg, CPA / April 29, 2020

QUESTION FROM A READER:  Our 10-partner CPA firm has had a modified pay-equal compensation system for a long time.  We finally seem ready to move to a performance-based system, but there is a lot of anxiety over how to do it.  What’s the best way to pull this off? SOLUTION.  Read on for a dozen…

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Reward Partners For Performing Like Partners

Marc Rosenberg, CPA / November 25, 2019

Any of you who started out as sole practitioners surely remember that it was you – no one else – who made your firm successful.  You brought in the business.  You did top notch work and delivered it on time. You nurtured and grew your client relationships so they came back asking for more.  When…

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8 Ways Comp Systems Get Partners To Do What The Firm Needs

Marc Rosenberg, CPA / October 13, 2019

Years ago, a senior partner at a 12-partner firm retreat I was facilitating gave us all an ‘aha’ moment: “A partner compensation system is just a way of allocating income among the partners.  It’s not meant to be the primary way to manage a firm.” There are two messages here: one obvious and one that is deeper….

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Partner Compensation Survey Research Results – Part II

Marc Rosenberg, CPA / March 19, 2018

This is the 2nd of a two part series on our recent partner compensation survey.    As part of CPA firms’ never-ending quest for the perfect partner compensation system, our company recently conducted a survey of firms’ compensation techniques and methodologies in conjunction with our colleagues at CPA Leadership Institute. But before we begin, a…

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Partner Compensation Practices: Cutting Edge Research – Part 1

Marc Rosenberg, CPA / March 5, 2018

CPA firms have struggled with their partner compensation systems forever. We’re constantly trying to build a better mousetrap.  Why is this quest never-ending? The simple answer is that it’s difficult for financially-minded, mathematically-inclined CPA firm partners to agree on what is fair for both themselves — a subject on which they are understandably but regrettably…

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Partner Comp is the Most Difficult at Smaller Firms

Marc Rosenberg, CPA / September 26, 2016

The most difficult and complicated partner compensation scenario may surprise you – it’s firms with 2-3 partners.  Why?  Because regardless of the system used to allocate income, at the end of the day, each partner has to look the others in the eyes and say,  “I’m OK with our final comp numbers.  They are fair…

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Transparency and Partner Compensation

Marc Rosenberg, CPA / May 31, 2016

If you ask 10 different people to define one of today’s buzzwords – transparency – you will get 10 different answers.  This post addresses “transparency” as it relates to a CPA firm compensation committee. Transparency defined Expectations of transparency applicable to compensation committees are: (1) making it easy for others to see how the process…

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Partner Comp: one-tier vs. two-tier system?

Marc Rosenberg, CPA / November 2, 2015

Some partner compensation systems provide for both a base and bonus that are mutually exclusive. At other firms partners receive a salary or draw during the year and a year-end distribution that adjusts the salary or draw to one final income number, based on each partner’s performance for the year. What’s better, a one-tier or…

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