Tax time is most notable because it marks the beginning of the rest of your commercial life.  Will the new financial year be one of sustained and exciting growth, or will it be marked by increased competition, and falling market share?  For many, this will be the year to re-invent the business, update the business model, and embark on a new growth phase.

The subject of “tax” brings to mind a classic example of re-inventing the business.  US tax lodgement used to rely on a specified form that had to be purchased.  One supplier had an almost complete monopoly on printing and selling these tax forms.  That is about as close as it gets to having a license to print money.

Imagine the impact when on-line tax lodgement finally arrived!  The market completely collapsed over the next  couple of years.

21 Today!Recognising that on-line lodgement would bring its own issues requiring considerable expert assistance, the firm began to offer on-line tax lodgement services.  The service arm quickly overtook paper form sales.  In the end, this nationally successful tax lodgement agency made more money than the form printing business ever did!

Such changes are not limited to legends, or far off places.  Imagine what would you be doing now, if it had been your business to repair radios and telex machines, or recondition carburettors?  Then again, these changes are not limited just to industries that have been wiped out.  Most industries are facing changes that are steadily eroding core profitability, and leading ultimately, to the destruction of those businesses who don’t change.

Think about hardware stores and haberdashery shops - both victims of the rise of “category killer” chain stores.  Can you think of one store you know, that saw the changes coming and re-invented itself to thrive in the new environment?  The scary thing is that this will be happening to you, unless you are either:
•    running a newly established business that is still in its original growth phase, or,
•    implementing fundamental change each year, as part of a program of continuous improvement.

Amongst our clients this year we will see:
•    a completely new business grafted onto an existing one which will then die
•    one sector of a business expand to replace the sale or closure of two other sectors now under intense threat, and
•    one complementary activity launched to replace a range of categories in a retail outlet.   And that’s just at July 1!

Andrew Hagger, Managing Director of Price Waterhouse-Coopers’ Melbourne office is reported (The Age, Saturday July 1) to have said “Executives ....want tax reform ...want red-tape reform.  It is mainly in the context of not wanting to slow down, but wanting to shift into next gear. this point, you would want to be in a business that is growing.”

So the big question is: “What are your plans for change and growth that will leave your business in a stronger position by June 30 next year, than otherwise it would hold?”

Like to talk some more about this topic?  No obligation, of course.   Talk to us Here!

Hey!  Psssstt!! Know what's new for "The Red Zebra" this year?

See the new animated  introduction to "The Red Zebra".  See the animation now - Click Here!

It takes some time to download, but be patient because it does present the position for most small businesses very clearly.

Then, next month, regular "BizMon" reports appear in "Flashprint".  Easier to see,  zoom to read, and they download faster, easier.  All part of a program of continuous improvement!

21 Years Young This Week!

McNicol Williams Management & Marketing Services began operations in July 1985, and "The Red Zebra" was born in 1997.

To mark the occasion,  The Red Zebra will carry out a "BizMap" analysis completely free for the first ten firms to contact us using the link above, or on the home page of the website at

Offer ends, July 8, 2006.

THE RED ZEBRA  - Still Out in Front!
Stop the Clocks!BRW Magazine (this week June 29 - July 5,  "Stop the Clocks" by Andrew Heathcote)  examines a new approach by the accounting profession to change the way accountants can add value for clients.  Nicholas Molloy, an accountant from Wagga Wagga in New South Wales,  is quoted "One of the key gripes was every time he [a new client] rang up his old accountant, he was sent a bill. ...  I decided that all new clients of mine would be put on service agreements .... We have found that it is a much better way for them to talk to us about where their business is at."  See BRW at
Here's the news!  The Red Zebra  has never had anything else!  Not in 21 years!  Call us any time on any matter.  No extra bill.  Just one fixed rate.

When it comes to value for clients, - we invented it!


Any advice, information or comment contained in this document is general in nature, and should not be relied on as the basis for any specific commercial, business, employment, or financial decision. Specific advice should always be obtained for each individual circumstance. Accordingly any advice, information or comment contained herein is for general guidance only.