058: Kelly Platt—A Personal Journey of a Successful Business Leader

Listen now to Kelly Platt talk about growing and achieving, professionally and personally!     

We often think we are two people—one at work and one at home. But as Kelly Platt tells us in this terrific podcast, “You are who you are.” And I agree. Your business career and your personal journey are always closely connected. Yes, you can change—Kelly started out in the Midwest Rust Belt without a high school degree working in factories and went on to become a highly successful entrepreneur—but at your core, you are still you. Don’t miss her inspiring story!

Today, Kelly has come a long way. And like so many others I have interviewed for On The Brink, she became successful because she understood and delivered on unmet needs. Like Debra Zambito whom I also interviewed recently, Kelly had mentors who encouraged her to try things, change company culture and transform the way her profession was viewed. Now, she helps other business leaders grow and prosper as well.  

As owner and managing principal of INSIDE Public Accounting, a partner in The Platt Group and a co-founder of AccountingWEB.com, Kelly has worked in the accounting industry since 1994. She currently directs all aspects of INSIDE Public Accounting’s Annual Survey and Analysis of Firms, one of the nation’s largest benchmarking surveys and reports. She is managing editor of the INSIDE Public Accounting newsletter, which provides leaders of CPA firms with insights into best practices and trends, and she recently launched The PRIME Symposium, an annual two-day event focusing on the best practices of the INSIDE Public Accounting Best of the Best firms.

Before rising to the top of the accounting world, Kelly held an array of non-corporate jobs, including forklift driver, factory line worker, janitor, HR assistant and executive assistant to the managing partner/COO at a top 100 accounting firm. In the mid-1980s, she started her own small cleaning company. Kelly met her husband in Indianapolis in 1997 and they have worked together since 1999.  

In this episode, Kelly Platt and I discuss:

  • How women grow into leadership roles
  • Finding a passion for what you do and then doing it
  • What young women care about in the companies they work for
  • The jobs at the beginning of Kelly’s career that led her to innovate, eventually creating the position she is in today
  • The struggles women face learning to lead without professional, female figures to follow
  • The challenges of partnerships
  • Planning for business succession

Resources mentioned in this episode: