Terminology 411: Bookkeeper, Accountant, Tax Professional – Who do YOU Need?

Webster defines a bookkeeper as a person who records the accounts or transactions of a business.

What a flat, not to mention outdated, definition of a bookkeeper.  To be honest, while the statement is true we find it difficult to use it as a label for ourselves.

Our team has revolutionized “bookkeeping” and “accounting” to incorporate a holistic approach for business owners. This is what we call bookkeeping basics “The ADI Way”.

The first secret we’ll let out of the bag: there is nothing new in what defines bookkeeping.  Bookkeeping started with abacus and paper, both tools we don’t see anymore.  What changes is the tools and technology so our “thing” is staying up-to-date on technology and adjusting the process to take advantage of it.  The second secret, Intuit (the makers of QuickBooks) is not the end all best solution for everyone.  So instead of beating yourself up over fitting inside some preconceived bookkeeping box, how about embracing the concept that there is a choice.

In the not so distant past, most accounting professionals would want you to abide by their rules, their tools, their systems.   The tools that work for them though won’t necessarily work for you simply based on the fact that all of us walk a similar but very different path from each other.  The key to a good system, finding something that works for you: that makes sense, works how you work, and is scalable. So we’ve developed paths and choices for you to choose from that will remove the pain, the pitfalls, and the burdens that exist around the old paradigm of bookkeeping (we’ll talk more about the pitfalls in an upcoming blog post!).

Over the years we have encountered some confusion around terminology when we talk to business owners.  We know personally how confusing this can be; with our experience and qualifications, you can call The ADI Team a bookkeeping or an accounting company – there was even a time you could call us tax professionals. What are the differences?


Manages day-to-day transactions


The day to day recording of monies paid out and monies received

Record Keeping

Preparing and filing of income tax returns to the governing bodies at various dates through the year

Tax Preparation

Preparing and filing of income tax returns to the governing bodies at various dates through the year

CPA: Certified Public Accountant

Advises you on your tax position and prepares tax returns

LTC: Licensed Tax Consultant

 Advises you on your tax position and prepares tax returns

Unless you took an actual accounting class, the terminology thrown around by financial strategic partners can get frustrating.  We have even seen many business owners feel small and insecure about their knowledge and the concept of having your own business means you need to know everything and asking for help is not part of the process.  First thing we do with our clients is make sure they understand the basics – and when working with us, this knowledge will be yours, too!

  • Understanding your balance sheet – what is that, and why should we care?
  • Understanding if there is a profit showing why it isn’t in your bank account
  • Knowing what is personal vs. business
  • Home based business items
  • Car usage – yes mileage logs are important
  • Finding the right tools to design a system you’ll USE, understand, and embrace

We’re not bookkeepers  ~ we’re solution providers.

We’re not accountants  ~   we’re partners in your business.

Our goal is to support you on your business journey. We believe that every entrepreneur deserves qualified partners with no drama, numbers that come easy and are reliable, and a dream business that provides ease and abundance. So we might talk a little differently than other “bookkeepers”. We’re going to approach this journey with you in that holistic manner we bring to our own business.

If you’re intrigued and want to know more, feel free to contact us for a consultation!

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