BBW VIP MEMBER INTERVIEW: Wendy Karlon, CPA of CPN Accounting

What is your name?

Wendy Karlon

What is your title?

CPA

What is your business name?

What is your website URL?

www.cpnaccounting.com

What is your LinkedIn URL?

How long have you been a Boston Business Women member?

2 years

Where are you based? How did you end up there?

Bolton MA - I grew up in MA on the North Shore and my husband grew up in Central MA, so this was an in between town.

Tell us more about your company! What do you do and what pushed you to start?

I was always one of those people that knew what they wanted to do. In high school, I took an accounting class, and I knew that was going to be my career and pursued an undergrad and an MBA in Accounting. I proceeded through several corporate companies working in the accounting departments for over 20 years. But as you move up through management, you lose touch with what you liked about the career when you started. The pandemic allowed me to reevaluate what I wanted to do, and I decided to go out on my own where I could directly serve my clients. As a woman working for other women in corporate, I didn’t feel very supported, and no matter the effort put in, it was never enough. My mission in forming CPN Accounting is to empower women-owned businesses around their finances and profitability so they can focus on doing what they love while remaining independent and supporting their families the way they want to.

How have you grown within your personal and professional life due to the success of your business?

When I first started my business, I wasn’t sure what to expect after having worked in Corporate for over 20 years. I just knew there had to be a better way to live. I started out slowly helping some local clients become established in QuickBooks and understand their numbers and then expanded to a few tax clients my first year. By growing slow, I was present for my three boys while they navigated the pandemic as well as really take the time to grow the way I wanted. Growing my own business at home allowed me to be available physically and emotionally for them unlike when I was in the rush of corporate. Being an entrepreneur, you wear all the hats yourself, so I’ve had to learn several different things like marketing, website design, and tools. This has allowed me to identify my strengths and know when it is time to hire someone else.

What is your definition of success? How do you know when you’ve reached it?

My definition of success is being able to independently take care of my family and myself by serving the customers that need my services. As far as I’m concerned, I’m already successful being able to do what I do every day from my home.

What was one of your biggest challenges in business?

The biggest challenge for me in business was defining my services and offerings and how I was going to serve clients. I’ve pivoted a few times over the past few years and have tweaked my offerings to what feels right for me and what works for my clients.

How has being a Boston Business Women Inner Circle member positively influenced your life + business?

The BBW Inner Circle membership has been the best investment I’ve ever made. I can quickly reach customers that need my services and have met some really incredible people. I would say that at least 50% of my growth over the past year has been because of the BBW membership.

Who is the woman behind your business? What does she like? How does she spend her free time? What does she value?

I enjoy working out a few days a week at bootcamps and taking walks outside. I enjoy knitting and am currently working on a multicolor Alpaca scarf. I have a second home in York, Maine that we Airbnb in the summer and enjoy being near the ocean. We have a malamute, a yellow lab, and a tuxedo cat and several chickens. I also read and do crosswords and Sudoku.

What makes you stand out from others in your field? What do you do differently?

I take the time to actually talk to clients on the phone for an initial consultation to make sure we are a good fit. I am responsive and communicate any issues that may arise. I aim to have a very personal touch with my clients and don't want them to just be the site they upload their tax forms to once a year. I like to believe I'm invested in their success.

Where can we keep up with you? What social media platforms do you use the most?

Facebook and LinkedIn

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