Armadillo Academy

We have four key programs designed to develop your firms greatest asset; its people.

From our Fast Futures Programme for newly qualified employees in the earliest stages of their career, to programmes for those working towards managerial or partnership roles, or our Business Development programme for the whole team. Armadillo Academy offers something for everyone.

Addressing the issue of high staff turnover and helping with your investment in employees.
From building commercial acumen, to team management, and all the way to business development,
our training programs are the perfect tool for when you’re building your dream team.


Fast Futures

The Fast Futures programme has been designed to support the development of accountants from a graduate or apprentice start point, through post qualification up to ‘Manager’ level. From this point further Armadillo Academy programmes are available to help develop advanced skills.

Fast Futures workshops cover the essential ‘non-technical’ development areas, those crucial skills, behaviours and insights to help develop rounded, effective, commercial and client-focused professionals.

  • Improving personal impact and communication
  • Effective work planning and prioritising
  • Building commercial acumen
  • Improving client relationships and interactions
  • Challenging norms and thinking innovatively
  • Understanding what is involved in effective management
  • Proactive career development planning

Stage 1: Pre-Qualification

The role of the modern accountant (2-hour workshop)

Both the world of accounting, and the needs and expectations of clients, are continually evolving. The modern accountant needs far more than technical knowledge to thrive. This session helps individuals to understand more about:

  • The internal and external responsibilities of the role
  • The expectations of partners, teammates and clients
  • How to be proactive, commercial, resilient and create more value for clients and the firm

Essential client service (2-hour workshop)

Client service is absolutely crucial to retain and attract business. In such a competitive marketplace it is vital for individuals at all levels of the firm to develop a client focused mindset. This session helps individuals to understand:

  • The essentials of client service
  • How to provide high quality tangible and intangible service to clients
  • How individuals and firms can go above and beyond to delight clients and differentiate themselves from the competition

Effective communication (2- hour workshop)

As professionals, we are ‘never not communicating’, so being an effective communicator is essential. This session looks into the basics of communication and how individuals can improve verbal instruction, listening and conversation. It will help delegates to:

  • Understand the key elements of communication and creating understanding
  • Develop processes for effective briefings to team members
  • Have more positive and impactful communication with clients

Commercial awareness (1/2 day workshop)

‘Being commercial’ is one of the essential requirements of the modern accountant. This session is ran as a commercial simulation which:

  • Helps individuals to experience how to run a firm and manage finance
  • Builds insight into required decisions around pricing, resourcing, scoping work and market strategy.
  • Helps delegates to understand the importance of financial hygiene, managing working capital and focusing on profit.

Planning your future (2-hour workshop)

It is never too early to plan ahead, to take time to think about where you are heading and where you would like to get to. This session has been designed to help trainee accountants focus on their careers and identify their development needs by:

  • Creating a personal career development plan
  • Identifying how to build and maximise skills, confidence and gain relevant experiences
  • Thinking about what and who can help with career development

Stage 2: Post-Qualification

Understanding self (2-hour workshop)

Great leadership and building strong client relationships begins with self-awareness. This session will help delegates to:

  • Understand their strengths
  • Identify their personal behavioural styles
  • Explore how to interact more effectively with others

Introduction to Management (1/2 day workshop)

Stepping up to any position which involved the management of others can be tough. Until this point, the focus has been on delivering great work. Management means helping others deliver great work which requires different skills and behaviours. For many, this can be a big challenge. This proactive session helps delegates with:

  • Understanding the essentials of management and how to create improved performance
  • Tools to motivate, coach and provide constructive feedback to others
  • Understand how to support others and drive performance
  • Understanding the challenges individuals often face when stepping into management roles.

Personal operational effectiveness (2-hour workshop)

As professionals develop their careers, their expertise and their responsibilities it is a continual challenge to juggle the demands of the role. It is essential to develop tools and techniques to effectively plan and prioritise and stay in control. This session will help delegates to:

  • Develop effective operational habits.
  • Understand how to create more ‘value’ for the firm, clients and teams.
  • Be more effective with delegation, dealing with conflicting demands, and assertively saying ‘no’ where appropriate

Personal impact (1/2 day workshop)

Modern accountants are in the communication business and need to have impact with clients and teams. This session builds on the effective Communication session and dives deeper into communication essentials including:

  • Understanding personal impact and personal brand
  • Utilising your personal capital
  • How to become a more positive communicator
  • How to flex individual communication styles
  • Building credibility and confidence

Impactful client conversations (1/2 day workshop)

The key to building deep and trusting client relationships is to have effective conversations and interactions with clients. This session will:

  • Provide tools and resources to plan and execute better client conversations
  • Focus on the importance of being curious and really striving to understand clients worlds
  • Introduce frameworks to help delegates to better understand the direction, goals, challenges and concerns of clients

Teams and team dynamics (2-hour workshop)

Great teams really are greater than the sum of the component parts. Creating effective team environments is key to great results and outstanding performance. This session provides a framework to help understand and shape team dynamics. Delegates will benefit from:

  • Understanding just what makes an effective team
  • Using a process to help recognising diverse strengths within the team
  • Understanding how to create environments which support open and honest communication
  • Learning how to build trust within the team

Thinking differently (2-hour workshop)

A criticism for many in the accounting profession is that they are using “yesterdays’ methods to help the clients of today tackle the challenges of tomorrow”.

The effective modern professionals understand the need for fresh thinking. This session has been designed to help delegates think differently by:

  • Identifying client challenges of tomorrow
  • Examining how accountants can help to solve these challenges
  • Deciding what needs to change and how
  • Developing methods to think laterally, deeper and wider Identifying those relationships and networks that could help us to innovate and develop solutions

Developing Managers

The impact that management has on organisation’s performance cannot be understated. Yet it is often taken for granted, with people just expected to naturally ‘step-up’ and manage teams. With Covid-19 driving the shift to remote working, great management, alongside leadership, is more important than ever to maintain engagement, motivation, growth and performance.

These workshops help to develop effective management behaviours and skills and include a range of practical tools and approaches to positively impact on individual and collective performance. They cover:

Managing self: (1 x half day workshop)

  • Planning, prioritising and personal organisation
  • Proactivity
  • Understanding how you maximise value as a manager

Managing performance: (1 x half day workshop)

  • Understanding performance drivers and the components of performance
  • Setting performance standards
  • Continual improvement conversations
  • Dealing with under-performance

Developing performance and potential (1 x half day workshop)

  • Building trust across the team
  • Understanding motivational drivers and what people NEED to grow
  • Coaching and mentoring

Business Development

In a modern Professional Services Firm, everybody has to be responsible for developing business and growing the top line profitably.

This isn’t just about winning new clients and projects, it’s about retaining existing clients and looking for opportunities to add value, to help solve their challenges and issues through providing high quality solutions. It’s about building and nurturing relationships with intermediaries and referrers which is even more important now so many interactions are online.

The workshops provide tools, resources and models to help with all aspects of Business Development:

Growing your pipeline (1/2 day workshop)

  • Defining prospects and your key messages
  • Defining and executing lead actions
  • Effective marketing and providing value with prospect contacts
  • Creating a personal activity plan

Existing clients: Creating opportunities to cross and up-sell (1/2 day workshop)

  • Retain and maximise: Why good ‘farming’ is so important
  • Breaking down the barriers to effective cross selling
  • The importance of wider and deeper relationships with clients: mapping exercise
  • Analysing opportunities with your clients
  • How best to position client solutions and services

Existing clients: Developing an Advisory approach to clients (1/2 day workshop)

  • Changing mindset – the ‘role’ of an Advisor and the impact on clients
  • Deeper and wider business conversations to identify service opportunities
  • Building trust
  • Creating client actions
  • Building an ADDvisor network

Converting opportunities (1/2 day workshop)

  • Developing a selling mindset
  • Finding the process that works for you
  • Developing Persuasion and influence techniques
  • Effective proposals

Pathway to Partner

Often people ‘make it’ to Partner based mainly on technical knowledge and ability – and are suddenly given business development, people and practice leadership responsibility. For many it can take time before they are able to balance all the elements of performance at Partner level and deliver against targets. This programme accelerates their development.

Developing the firm: (1⁄2 day workshop)

Developing strategy, understanding culture and leading change

Commercial acumen: (2 x 1⁄2 day workshops)

The commercial operation: Key lessons in scoping, pricing, billing, discounting and working capital management

Leadership: (4 x 1⁄2 day workshops)

  • Self Leadership – Personal organisation, planning, prioritising and executing
  • Leading others – Building trust as a leader, driving performance, understanding leadership style and empowering others
  • Leading and building effective teams – Understanding team dynamics, enabling team members to play to strengths, creating trust through open and honest communication and a continual improvement focus
  • Developing impact as a Leader – Effective communication, building credibility, resilience and assertiveness

Business Development (2 x 1⁄2 day workshops)

  • Growing fees from existing clients – Client relationship management, overcoming barriers to cross and up-selling, mapping your client relationships, identifying opportunities, positioning services and solutions to clients.
  • Developing new business – Defining ideal prospects, building pipeline, contact strategy, lead and lag measures, creating activity plans.

Not sure about what training programs you need for your firm?

Let’s figure out what’s right for you.

How it works

Live delivery either virtual or face to face

We’ll help you choose the best option based on your business. Running a virtual session maintains much of the personal interaction, connection and collaboration provided by good quality traditional delivery.

We effectively replicate how the session would run face to face in a physical meeting room (with knowledge delivery, examples, leading discussion and de-briefing exercises).

Group 31@2x

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Sole Practitioner/ Single Partner/ Director firm


per month + VAT

Two or more Partner/Director firm


per month + VAT