Rob Nixon has 22 years of experience as an advisor to accountants, with clients in over 30 countries. In his current role, Nixon is helping define and execute how PANALITIX’s cloud-based accounting solution software helps thousands of accountants improve their firm’s position across profit, capacity and growth through a connection with the ultimate accountant membership community. With a belief that accountants are the naturally trusted advisors to effective business through innovative technology, quality content and transformative methodology, Nixon empowers accountants to a position where they are able to exert a tremendous impact on their client’s conditions.
With landmark strategies in use by over 16,000 clients in 30 countries and two bestselling books to his name, “Accounting Practices Don’t Add Up – why they don’t and what to do about it” and “Remaining Relevant – the future of the Accounting profession,” Nixon is the lead speaker at Firm of NOW, an international touring conference that delivers the latest research and thoughts on practical steps and necessary tools needed to create a leading accounting firm.
Why did you want to run your own business?
I am very goal-driven. I have 174 life goals to complete. Collectively, they all involve having lots of time and having lots of money. If you’re in a job (which I heard stands for ‘just over broke’) it’s hard to have the time and the money. Life is for living not existing, and for me and my family that means having amazing experiences. Starting a business should come from passion of a cause, making a difference or just wanting to create wealth. A business should fuel your life not be your life. For me it was the only option. PANALITIX is my seventh startup. It’s also the best one!
What was the hardest thing about getting started?
Capital. I have started most of my companies on my credit cards – very expensive capital. However, it’s capital that is there and can be used. As the credit increase letters would arrive from the banks I would always accept the new increase. I figured I could use it now, make some sales and pay it off later. These days with crowdfunding, angel funding and maybe venture capital funding it’s easier than ever (provided you’ve got a great idea that helps a lot of people solve a lot of problems) to get started on other peoples money.
What has been the most rewarding moment?
When my existing client base started investing in my business. At the time of this interview we have 110 clients who are investors. They believe in what we’re doing, love what we’re doing and want to be part of it. It’s very humbling to have your clients / customers be your investors.
What’s the one piece of advice you would give someone else about to start their own business?
I am going to give two pieces of advice:
1) It sounds cliche’, but if you have a passion, you’re committed and believe you can do it then just do it and play full out. I meet so many people who keep a job whilst they start a business. They’ll succeed very slowly – if at all. I have started five of my seven businesses on credit cards when I couldn’t afford to. I’ve left jobs to start businesses and left businesses (that I was an equity holder in) to start businesses.
2) You’ve only got one ass, you can only ride one horse at a time. I know the likes of Sir Richard Branson or Elon Musk have multiple businesses – but they are not the norm. I’ve met Sir Richard a number of times and he started with 1. Now he has 400+ with a a full formula and management team to run them. The regular Entrepreneur is not wired up this way. It’s about FOCUS – Focus On one Course Until Successful.