A friend of mine recently posted on Facebook asking for recommendations for an accounting firm that was well suited to purpose-led social enterprises. I was interested in following the responses he got because I too was on the lookout for an accountant whose purpose was aligned with my own.
I’m not sure how he felt about it, but I was underwhelmed by the answers he got to his request. It wasn’t that people didn’t care. Its more that people seemed to be scratching their heads about who to recommend. Everybody seemed to know an accountant, but it was difficult to find one that had purpose and positive impact at its core.
It was for this reason I was excited to interview my guests for this week, Ben Walker and Harvee Pene, partners in the accounting firm Inspire CA. At the centre of their mission is to help businesses that exist to have a positive impact on the world around them. They know that in helping other organisations to be well-managed and profitable, the impact of Inspire CA is magnified as those businesses achieve their vision.
Appropriately we had our conversation at the headquarters of Thankyou in Melbourne, an organisation that donates all of its profits to helping eradicate poverty around the world. As Ben and Harvee point out, and echoing the advice of Matt Allen from a previous episode, it is imperative that organisations like Thankyou continue to make a profit if they are going to be able to continue on their quest. And essential to protecting their profit is being financially literate and responsible.
And this is what Inspire CA do best. They take something that can be difficult to break down and access, to something understandable and fun, both in their work and through this conversation. They don’t just give advice on how to reduce tax, but they encourage their clients to regularly pay themselves from their profit, to celebrate their success, and help them connect with a community of similarly aligned businesses.
Post disrupting accounting, Ben would like to be part of making a dent in the hunger and homelessness that exists on our planet, and Harvee would like to inspire more people to have a mindset of giving and helping others.
Although we recorded this conversation in Melbourne and it forms part of the Melbourne series of this podcast, Harvee and Ben are actually based in Brisbane, one of the cities I am looking forward to featuring next year.
Ben and Harvee break down the stereotypes of accountants in both style and substance. I hope you enjoy listening to our conversation.