From Felon to Firm Owner: An Unconventional Path in Accounting

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Think the pathway to owning an accounting firm is linear? Think again.

In this episode, Blake has a fascinating conversation with Scott “OKR” Scarano, an accounting firm owner with an unconventional background.

Before becoming a successful firm owner, Scott started dealing drugs, got kicked out of UNC, and ended up with a felony conviction. But with persistence and grit, Scott cleaned up his act, got back on track with his accounting degree, and hustled his way up to leading an accounting practice approaching $2 million in annual revenue.

Scott gives an honest account of his journey—the highs, the lows, and the lessons learned along the way. He talks about the mistakes he made scaling his firm and the tools and systems he implemented to get “out of the work” and create more freedom in his life.

These days Scott is pursuing his creative passions, like rapping as "OKR," while his firm runs smoothly in the background.

His story offers inspiration that firm ownership isn't one-size-fits-all and that with the right mindset and support, unlikely entrepreneurs can thrive in accounting.

  • (00:46) - Blake's first impressions of Scott
  • (07:14) - The definition of a successful firm
  • (11:28) - Scott works an hour a week on his firm
  • (12:09) - The bottom line: What Scott takes home
  • (13:32) - Are you planning to grow the firm?
  • (15:33) - Scott felt guilty about not doing the work
  • (16:55) - How Scott started his firm
  • (21:34) - Learning from mistakes
  • (23:29) - Scott's felony charge and what it taught him about business
  • (26:02) - The similarities between pricing drugs and accounting services
  • (32:09) - What did you do after you bought the firm?
  • (35:55) - Getting stuck at $1.2 million revenue
  • (36:40) - How EOS changed things
  • (38:25) - What is Padgett?
  • (39:24) - Back to EOS
  • (44:48) - Joining XPAC, the Xero Partner Advisory Council
  • (48:27) - Stuck in Mexico during COVID caused a mindset shift
  • (51:16) - Cal Newport and digital minimalism
  • (56:05) - What Scott is working on next
  • (01:01:37) - Where to reach Scott and how to listen to Accounting High
  • (01:04:01) - Where do you want to see the accounting profession go?
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Connect with Our Guest, Scott Scarano

Learn more about Scott's firm, Padgett NC


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Creators and Guests

Scott Scarano🥶❤️‍🔥
Scott Scarano🥶❤️‍🔥
Lil Toddler • OKR • Son of a CPA • MARI(ed2)JUANA • Rapping Custodian @ Accounting High • Accounting Firm Owner • Father of Dragons
From Felon to Firm Owner: An Unconventional Path in Accounting
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