Creating one of the Largest Regional Firms, Succession Planning and Building a Strong Culture of Unity

Running a firm is hard enough. Being a Managing Partner at a young age and building a firm into the largest tax and advisory practice on the Gold Coast is even harder (and it hasn’t all been smooth sailing)!

Today we catch up with Aaron Lavell to discuss his journey from a young accountant at EY to dominating the accounting space and the challenges that went along with that. Some of the things we discussed were:

  • Succession planning and what to look for in a new partner
  • KPI’s for the firm and how he manages salary expectations and sets salaries for staff
  • How to create a strong culture in a firm and more importantly how to uphold it?
  • How they handled the response to COVID to reassure clients and staff
  • Post COVID policy changes for staff
  • How to maintain unity in a multi partner firm
  • Learning from the GFC and applying it to the current COVID situation
  • Remunerating Partners – Hunters vs Farmers
  • How to start a firm and build your client base if you’re starting from scratch


Aaron Lavell is the Managing Partner of one of the largest accounting firms on the Gold Coast called WMS, they are the 7th largest regional firm in Australia with 7 partners and over 60 staff.  He has over twenty-five years’ experience in the accounting industry and heads up the corporate finance and business valuation team.  He was one of the founding staff members of WMS where he quickly progressed to Partner and soon after Managing Partner and has been successfully leading the firm since 2003.


We are one of the largest Public Practice Recruiters in Australia and New Zealand and have access to most of the clients and candidates on the market. We thrive on delivering the best quality candidates to accounting firms so that you have the right people on the bus to grow your firm.
Why You Should Work With Us:
  • Retained Executive Search Service with delivery on average within 4-8 weeks – or your money back
  • Full Money Back Guarantee up to 12 months as per our TOB’s
  • Split payment options to help you with your cash flow as per our TOB’s; and
  • Discounts for graduates, retainers, admin staff and referrals to your client base
Our Services:
  • Succession Planning – Finding a new Partner for your firm
  • Growing your Firm’s Capabilities and Service Offerings with New/Additional Partners
  • Resourcing your Existing Teams with Juniors (Cadets/Grads) and Senior Accountants/Auditors
  • Contractors to help you through the busy period
  • Remote Staff

Contact Info

You can find out more about Aaron Lavell and his firm WMS Chartered Accountants from their website: 

To find out more about Recruitment Expert please go to or email

Michael Edelstein:

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