Once I had obtained sufficient breadth of experience and qualified my leanings were very much toward private client and family businesses.
I have always taken the view that the secret to a working knowledge of tax is to gain a certain breadth of experience before specialising too much. It is all too easy to get pigeon holed into a particular area of tax if you are not careful and there are pressures within firms which serve to reinforce a comfortable inertia. In my early years this quest for knowledge and experience compelled me to move between firms of accountants to obtain what I felt was the vital background I needed in business tax, corporation tax and private client. Often a hard decision to take but it was the price of getting the necessary experience.
I have found in my professional life that there is a time and a place for everything. That perspective ultimately led me to leave the accountancy firms which I grew up with for a law firm and then a tax consultancy before setting up my own practice in 2009. That move gave me the freedom to control my time and to choose the work I do and, more importantly, don’t do. My practice is focussed on a small, niche client base and steady referral work from accountants and solicitors. It also allowed me to write and blog on tax related issues in a way which I would not otherwise be able to.