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Case Study

Former Bookkeeper Transforms Her Tax and Accounting Firm Despite All Odds Being Stacked Against Her

Goals Goals

  • Help clients create wealth rather than just doing their reporting
  • Find methods to package and sell higher value services
  • Get access to financial coaching and tax planning experts

Key Benefits Experienced Key Benefits Experienced

  • Diversified and expanded service options for clients
  • On pace to nearly double revenue year over year
  • Gained confidence in objection handling during sales calls

“I was in a coma for 6 months. I had lots of things stacked against me. I could have given up. Instead, I flourished by focusing on my business and seeking the coaching I needed to grow my tax and bookkeeping firm into a full-service accounting firm.”

JERILYN MALLARI, EA, MBA

Jerilyn Mallari’s firm offers tax planning, financial advisory, tax preparation, accounting and more in the San Francisco Bay Area. While she used to focus solely on bookkeeping and tax prep, her main focus today is helping businesses create value through strategic tax planning among other high level financial advisory services. So, how did she go from a struggling bookkeeper to growing an accounting firm that includes financial coaching? Her story is told below.

“I Never Thought I’d Go From Bookkeeping to Tax Planning”

Ms. Mallari wanted to be a biologist when she was in high school, but she ended up getting a minor in Business at Sacramento State, and then started a dollar store similar to Dollar General, which failed, before eventually ending up as a receptionist at H&R Block. Seeing that the work was relatively easy, she worked her way into being a tax preparer and eventually a regional manager. 

After adding another baby to the family, life forced Ms. Mallari to start a business from home, and she began picking up bookkeeping clients with the help of her mother’s friends. Between 2013 and 2016, she grew the business to $100,000, and then onward to over $300,000. She relied on hard work, not luck. Still, her dream was never to do just accounting work

After getting a degree in finance, the challenges of motherhood remained, juggling work and raising children. Then came the accident that sent her into a coma for six months. The doctor said she’d likely never walk again. The business was put on hold while she recovered. 

I didn’t really get started back up again until midway through 2018, and by that time we were also caring for my grandparents in our house, one of whom had a tracheostomy and the other with Alzheimers. I could barely even walk, but I was determined not to be in a wheelchair.” Despite the hard conditions, Ms. Mallari made it work—she recommitted to the business after the long, forced period of time off while getting her body recovered.

I found Andrew Argue, and I knew there was an opportunity for me to grow and transform my bookkeeping business into something different, something that I wanted to do and something that would pay all my bills.”

Bookkeeping to Financial Coaching Via 7 Figure Firms

As she recovered, accounting firm growth started again when Ms. Mallari committed to come to a 7 Figure Firms event, live and in-person. Her goal was to walk at the event. She succeeded, and at the event she learned tactics to grow beyond tax prepping and bookkeeping. She started the tax planning process with her clients. 

With $700,000 in medical bills, being able to grow a financial coaching firm wasn’t just a desire, it was a necessity. She began helping clients divest positions with low or no tax penalties, created advanced tax strategies for wealth creation, combined business exit strategies with low tax tactics, and even began offering virtual CFO services.

7 Figure Firms helped me to monetize and hone in on my skills. It was so helpful to know exactly how to sell and price tax planning packages.” Once her firm began to shift to financial coaching, she began to outsource some of the basic bookkeeping and tax prep work. Her revenue has been steadily increasing. From January to July of 2020, sales have nearly equaled her revenue for the entire year of 2019. She’s also introduced new services thanks to the 7 Figure Firms program, such as the COVID-19 related advisory services done for businesses in need of PPP and EIDL funds. 

Overall, some of the side benefits she’s experienced from being in the program include:

“I want to continue getting away from the monthly accounting and build this accounting firm as large as I can.” She’s also looking into acquiring a tax firm to help with the service delivery when selling tax plans along with tax preps.  

“We went from a 2-bedroom apartment with a family of five to a 5-bedroom house with a family of seven (including elderly grandparents). Without the ability to grow a financial coaching firm, this new spacious house would have been impossible.”

She now has the ability to buy some of her time back by expanding her team, and work on continuing to improve her service delivery and packages that she offers to clients. While already operating an efficient, high-value business model, she knows she can continue to improve, and that’s why she stays as a member of the 7 Figure Firms coaching program. 

When COVID-19 hit, the quick response by Andrew and his team at Corvee really helped me out to offer something timely and in need to my clients. I was able to sell about half of my clients on those services, and it brought me a good amount of revenue. I look forward to further innovation and new programs to offer clients by being a part of this prestigious program.

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