In Profile: Mike Lloyd, Haines Watts Swindon

Mike Lloyd is the managing partner at Haines Watts Swindon based at Old Station House in Old Town. He has been the managing partner at the Swindon firm – which is part of the national brand Haines Watts for more than 20 years. Outside of work he lives with his partner Pat and has two grown-up daughters.

What did you do before joining the firm?

I trained with Spicer and Peglar and then Kidsons Impey (two top 20 national firms) in Bristol with a couple of years at a local practice in between. Before that my career is best described as varied!

Share three things you enjoy outside of numbers and work?

I enjoy going to music festivals and concerts in the UK and abroad as music has always been a large part of my life. I love cars and often go to track days and I look forward to time with my family – (not necessarily in that order!)

Who is a typical Haines Watts customer?

We enjoy working with SMEs where the owner or team want more than just a reactive compliance service. That want advice and a sounding board from an accountant and business advisor who is also a business owner. This means I understand the issues as well as the technical solutions.

In your opinion what are the top attributes of a good accountant?

What sets us apart is we work hard on looking after our own team. Many of our employees have been with us over ten years (some over 20!). We look after them and in turn they look after our clients. We believe the best accountants:

1) Listen – you can’t provide the right solution if you don’t completely understand the problem or opportunity.

2) Keep in touch – showing clients they matter.

3) Keep up to date technically – and bring in specialists when needed because you can’t know everything.

How important is the not-for-profit sector to your business?

In recent years the charitable and not-for-profit sector of our business – led by specialist partner Sue Plumb –  has continued to expand.

Many small firms have stopped working in this arena because of the specialist nature and complexity.

However, we do specialise so trustees and executive officers can be comfortable they are fully complying with their responsibilities to the charity, its funders and beneficiaries.

What’s your vision for Haines Watts Swindon?

To continue to expand the practice and add to the range of services we already provide.

To build on the reputation for quality we have worked hard to establish over the last twenty plus years.

To become the advisor of choice for Swindon and Wiltshire SMEs, UK subsidiaries and the charity and not for profit sector. And to do it whilst having fun!

What are your top business tips for 2018?

Keep abreast of new technology. Doing what you have always done the way you have always done it, is no longer an option. If you don’t progress then smaller, younger, hungrier businesses will walk away with yours.

Cash is king is an old saying but with interest rates beginning to rise and the uncertainties as to what Brexit will hold for the UK, it has never been truer. Businesses will fail and the domino effect will take their customers and suppliers with them if they allow their debtors to get out of control. Cash flow management and credit control will be essential to continued success and for some just survival.

Care for your key employees and look to incentivise them. Finding good people is not easy and neither is keeping them. It is important though to find out what motivates them as it may not be what you expect and it will vary from individual to individual.

When you know, look to build packages that will make those key people want to stay. Share options and profit related bonuses are just a couple of examples alongside potentially more emotive and personal things such as company cars.

To find more about Haines Watts Swindon visit: www.haineswatts-swindon.co.uk

Pictured above: Mike Lloyd, managing director, Haines Watts Swindon

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