The Practitioner: Cat-alitic converter sends client into rage

HARDLY A WEEK goes by without a client contacting us regarding auto-enrolment or other correspondence received from the pensions regulator about a staging date.

Clients don’t always know what is real and what is junk correspondence these days, and sometimes they panic without need.

Companies House are the worst culprit for this, sending out red letters marked as ‘Urgent Attention Required’ with up to four weeks left of the actual deadline.

Maybe we should look at becoming company secretary for all our clients so we can receive all this information first hand and avoid them becoming stressed with it.

Non-verbal communication is always fraught with problems, and things being open to interpretation, and sometimes just plain incorrect.

Let’s talk about tax

Talking of which, I almost gave a client of mine a heart attack last week. He is currently under investigation from HMRC. It’s a complicated one, which has been rumbling for a number of years on and off. Several Inspectors have come and gone but this latest one seems to have dug her heels in.

My client is convinced she has it in for him, and is unhappy at the level of detail into his private life that is being looked at.

I made matters worse when I sent him a text last week saying ‘HMRC have just written to me about your cat…’.

My phone immediately rang with the said client going mad on the other end:
“What do they want to know about my bloody cat for?” he raged, then offered a suggestion what he would do with cat and the inspector, which isn’t suitable for print.

I had to explain sheepishly that actually the letter wasn’t about his cat but about his vat.

I’ve since turned off my predictive messaging from my phone and vowed to do as little non-verbal communication as possible.

The Practitioner’s uncensored thoughts come from within their own practice – having left a regional firm in the heart of England

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