IAPA

IAPA CEO Blog - May edition

Dear Members, this is the fifth issue of my “Blog”.

One of the advantages of being a member of an International Association is that you learn about different cultures and religions.

May was the month of “Ramadan” (9th month of the lunar calendar) for 1,8B Muslim people of the world. Ramadan has been celebrated for over 14 Hundred Years. Ramadan is a call for an internal spiritual and physical cease-fire. The point of the fast is to worship the Divine by demonstrating control over earthly desires during daylight hours. It is also an opportunity to demonstrate "high road" values -- being gracious, generous and gentle -- toward others no matter how cranky or irritated you might be, especially when your blood sugar plummets and your mouth is too dry to speak. The combination of physical and spiritual self-awareness is a test of character: When your stomach growls from hunger will you snap at your pesky child? Your thoughtless neighbour? A careless colleague? The boorish driver who cut you off? Or will you remain peaceful, practicing the patience and graciousness you promised yourself and your Creator? A practice it is, replete with discoveries and acknowledgements of imperfection and abounding with opportunities to ask forgiveness and try again. As said by Eid Mubarak addressing all Muslims.

Let’s say a month of probation and purification. Also, by coincidence in June I have completed my first year serving as CEO to IAPA. Together we have achieved a lot during this one year as an organization, but of course it is you who will evaluate it correctly and thoroughly. Let me say I really enjoy travelling around the world, meeting our members, listening to them, understanding their needs and trying to create solutions for them, finding new members, growing the organization, representing IAPA all around the world with honour and pride, and giving the vision and direction for the future”. People keep asking me “which is your favourite country?”. It is not about the country or places I visit, it is all about you, the member. You make IAPA special.

Yes, I am pragmatic and optimistic, I believe IAPA will be the best organization in the world, with its’ culture, this is what I am working towards. Three years ago, we had difficult times, but we didn’t crack, and we’ve improved our existence, just like a diamond – “coal under pressure could become dust or diamond”, IAPA is a diamond and proudly celebrating its’ 40th Year Anniversary this year as being bigger and stronger than ever! That is the reason you will see the “Dimond Figure” in our 40th Year Anniversary Logo.

Now let’s talk about numbers;

  • Financial Dashboard
    • We grew from $478M to $2,7B within a year. This was possible with the gain of new members, growth of our current members and giving associate members the full member status.

Here is the 2019 Conference Agenda, all dates are confirmed. Please mark in your dairy.

  • IAPA Events:
    • IAPA USA Regional Conference, New York, 28-30 June 2019
    • IAPA Canadian BHD Regional Conference, Alberta, 4-8 September 2019
    • IAPA UK200Group FIFO, Manchester, 27 September 2019
    • IAPA UK200Group Regional Conference, Liverpool, 13-15 November 2019
    • IAPA International Conference, Singapore, 21-24 November 2019.

What is NEW!

  • NEW Member! Lviv, Ukraine
    • Audit Firm ‘Expert- Audit’, Lviv, Ukraine.
    • Welcome to the IAPA Family!
    • They have already enrolled to attend the US Conference! What a commitment!
    • We keep on growing, glad we have you.
  • NEW! IAPA - AILFN Partnership Agreement
    • As mentioned in my presentations over the past year, I am pleased we have completed the partnership deal with the AILFN (Association of International Law Firm Networks).
    • This is an initiative being created against Big4 to combine the forces of all Associations and Networks around the world.
    • To sum up the agreed benefits for IAPA members:
      • IAPA will be a member of AILFN under “lawyersaccountants” Program as of today.
      • All IAPA members will be listed under www.lawyersaccountants.com
      • This will allow all service seeker corporates (potential clients) to reach;
        • Real-time access to exact expertise
        • 500,000 Vetted Professionals
        • 160+ Countries
        • 8,500 Firms
        • 11,000 Offices
        • $180 Billion Annual Services
      • RFQs (Request for Quotations) make the expertise and experience of 8,000 vetted network member firms with 500,000 accountants, lawyers, ALSPs and consultants accessible in minutes - everywhere in the world. The firms range in size from 5 to more than 1,500 lawyers and accountants.
      • So, for pure referral and business creating opportunities for our members, we will be part of this initiative without creating any extra cost to our members.
    • If a member has any questions, please ring or email me.
    • Please enjoy the benefits of the partnership and IAPA Membership!
  • NEW! IAPA New Website Phase 2 Development
    • We are kicking off the Phase 2 Development of IAPA Website.
    • Please use it and come back with your user experience feedback, so that we can improve the website during Phase 2.
    • Also, if you see that your firm’s information is not up to date, please contact Taberna Sansom to make sure it is corrected
  • NEW! IAPA USA Conference is still open for registration!
    • USA Regional Conference, 28-30 June 2019, New York, USA.
    • We have reached 25 Registrations so far, from 4 continents!
    • Conference is still open for your registrations, please go to the IAPA Portal https://www.iapa.net/portal log in and click on Current Events.
    • We have created an amazing program with our hosting member Schulman Lobel, so please join us.
  • Webinars:
    • More member benefits: Free IAPA Webinars! Please find the June Agenda below:
    • Coaching that delivers a great performance, 10 June 2019.
      • (Hosted by Sean McLoughney – Learning Curve Improving Performance)
  • IAPA 2019 EMEA Conference, Mallorca, Spain
    • We had a very successful EMEA Conference in Mallorca, Spain between 2-5 May 2019. This conference took place in the one of the best hotels on the island “Gran Melia de Mar, Palma”.
    • I would like to thank all 72 attendees making this organization and event meaningful and glad we have you all. Thanks for your attendance and contributions. I wish success in your businesses until our next conference. I hope you have enjoyed the event and returned back with good memories and ideas to implement to improve your lives and businesses.
    • I also would like to congratulate Chairman and all new board members for being elected to the EMEA Regional Board, I wish you a successful term where we can work hand in hand for the benefit of IAPA. As discussed at the conference we are “One” association not a number of regional associations working together under the umbrella of IAPA.
  • Representation
    • I was invited to the UK200Group Membership Services Committee (MSC) meeting in London, hosted in Price Bailey Office London City office on 9 May 2019. I am pleased to receive their positive feedback about the recently organized IAPA EMEA Conference, i.e. new structure, pace of growth in the region, attendance level of new members to the conference and the new management style of our organization. I would like to thank to MSC Chair David Stevens and all MSC Members for the great meeting.
  • My Visits
    • Current Member Visits in May 2019:
      • Alaziq & Alzailaie CPA, Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA)
      • Alaziq & Alzailaie CPA, Riyahd, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA)
      • Audit Firm «Expert- Audit», Lviv, Ukraine
      • Thank you for your great hospitalities! I left my heart in your countries
    • To demonstrate the idea of togetherness in the world, I will keep visiting our members, their countries, cities and offices.
  • Joy Lord - Special Thanks!
    • As you know Joy Lord has decided to leave IAPA on 15 May 2019 to slow down her career and work for a non-profit educational organization.
    • It was a privilege knowing and working with Joy in the last six years. She worked hard to the best of her abilities. She has supported me in the last year in my role as CEO and I know she will be missed by many of our members. I wish her all the best for the future. 
  • New Executive Assistant to the CEO (PA)
    • We are in the last phase in the hiring process of our “New Executive Assistant to the CEO”. Planning to hire in July and I will give more details about it in my next blog.

As I finish this CEO Blog, I would like to underline and summarize what we have achieved in the last year at IAPA.

We are creating a true corporate culture in IAPA!

  • We have new:
    • IAPA Staff Handbook,
    • “Corporate Offer Letter Format” for hiring new staff,
    • “Corporate Employment Contracts” for IAPA Staff,
    • “Privacy Policy”,
    • “Standard Corporate Forms”,
    • “Staff Standard Holiday Terms”,
    • We have also:
      • Implemented a “Performance Mechanism for IAPA Staff”,
      • Completely changed the “Center Team”,
      • Outsourced “Finance Division”,
      • Decreased Center cost by 40%,
      • Implemented “Monthly CEO Meetings” with the International Board (10 Video, 2 Physical),
      • Implemented “Monthly CEO Reports” to the International Board,
      • Introduced CEO Blog,
      • Designed “New Marketing Materials”,
      • Launched a “New Website”,
      • Introduced “New Corporate Video”,
      • Introduced “New Member Videos”,
      • Reactivated “IAPA TV”,
      • Launched “New App” Tool for smart devices,
      • Upgraded “IAPA CRM”,
      • Redesigned “Conference Structures”,
      • Introduced “New Special Interest Groups”,
      • Introduced “Strategic Partnership Model”,
      • Introduced “360 Degrees (Multidisciplinary) Service Line”,
      • Visited Members in 30 Countries and 4 Continents as CEO (some even with Global Chairman),
      • Visited 52 Members and 63 Offices,
      • Organized and/or attended and presented five Conferences,
      • Signed a collaboration agreement with AICPA,
      • Signed a collaboration agreement with AIFLN,
      • Announced “Regional Growth Plans”,
      • Created a good pipeline of new members, so that our growth continues at a good pace,
      • Created a new role as “Research and Office Executive”,
      • Reached tremendous growth rate,
        • 23% in terms of member number (from 152 to 187),
        • 48% in terms of country coverage (from 50 to 74),
        • 83% in terms of partners (from 724 to 1327),
        • 97% in terms of offices (from 166 to 327),
        • 208% in terms of staff (from 6,352 to 19,582),
        • 464% in terms of member’s fee income (from $478M to $2,7B),
    • Now working on;
      • The new “Corporate Governance Model”,
      • Changing the organization bank to an International Bank,
      • And a lot of new things, please stay tuned! We don’t have a luxury of taking our “foot off the pedal” because we have the whole “IAPA World and Family” waiting to be served!

We are strong because we are different! In IAPA we have no boundaries, we truly celebrate all religions, cultures, languages, ethnicities and we work, live and socialize under the “One IAPA Roof”. This is a clear commitment, dedication and richness of all IAPA members from around the world. I visit every single office with the same enthusiasm and during every visit, I am impressed with the quality of our members. I am glad we have you all!