We had the good fortune of connecting with Marie Phillips and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Marie, how do you define success?
Success to me is doing what I want, when I want, with who I want.

Don’t get me wrong, most of us “have” to work but work can be fulfilling. I rephrase it as I “get” to work. I get to help business owners make better, faster decisions, I get to lead an amazing team, I get to be innovative. Owning my business gives me the luxury to choose who I want to work with and allows me the freedom to have my own schedule.

So in other words, I am successful. And yet, not as successful as I want to be.

Success is not about money to me. It’s about lifestyle. Early on in my entrepreneurial journey, I was invited to write down what my personal goals were: number of working hours per week, amount of vacation per year, savings goals, home purchase budget, etc. My goals are achievable, conservative, and somewhat generic (for Los Angeles, haha). But still, it’s a journey. I am working on finding ways to focus on strategy over managing, to learn to disconnect after work, and to have extra time with my family. It’s not a destination I can achieve and be done with. It will ebb and flow. But for now, I feel successful most of the time and that’s a win.

What should our readers know about your business?
I founded Connected Accounting so I could innovate beyond the norms expected of a financial services firm. I wanted to create a firm where my passion for problem-solving, love for efficient processes, and sincere support for clients were built into the DNA of the business. Above all, I wanted to liberate business owners from the everyday stresses that too often lead to burnout and frustration. As an entrepreneur myself, I know these worries firsthand—and am an expert when it comes to implementing solutions.

The road to starting Connected Accounting was far from linear. I was born and raised in France and am a first generation American. It took grit and hard work to get here. I moved to Los Angeles knowing only one person. Now I have over a hundred clients, a great network of advisors, and a team split over the US. But it started with nothing. Resiliency, dedication, and above all reliability is what helped me get here. I do what I say I am going to do.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I currently live on the Venice Canals, a little heaven in LA. So of course, we would go stand-up paddle boarding on the canals in the morning; when the water is calm, the light is soft, and the ducks are out. We would plant my beach tent, chairs, and cooler on the beach and talk all day. Friday morning, we would walk over to the Farmers’ Market and devour Jyan Isaac’s fresh bread, buy fresh veggies from Smith Farms, and the best citrus in town from the Polito farm, go home and cook a delicious meal shared outside on my patio. A couple times during the week, I would take my best friend with me to a workout class at Deuce, my local grungy outdoor gym, and get a great workout in. As a treat, we would drive to Paradise Cove in Malibu and order one of those drinks served inside a fresh pineapple. We would go on a hike in the Santa Monica mountains and end the day in Topanga at a friend’s house for dinner, overlooking the golden hills. One night, we would drive to West Hollywood and have dinner at Crossroads, my favorite restaurant in the city. Happy hours would be spent in my canoe, riding around the canals with a glass of Rose or on her last night going to Shangri LA’s rooftop bar in Santa Monica to enjoy a last sunset together.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Traction: Get A Grip On Your Business Book by Gino Wickman. My coach used this model and it’s been so helpful. I keep defining my rocks and quarterly goals; it keeps me focused and helps me achieve goals faster.

Website: connectedaccounting.co

Instagram: @connectedaccounting

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/company/connected-accounting

Twitter: @mariefphillips

Facebook: @connectedaccounting

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