myGovID is coming!

myGovID will be required from 31 March 2020
myGovID will be required to access all government online services

The Government is pushing ahead with the removal of the existing AUSkey technology which many businesses (and tax agents) currently use to access online services such as the Business Portal and Australian Business Register.

All existing AUSkeys will be switched off on the 31st March 2020 at which time a myGovID will be required to access all government online services.

The new myGovID (which importantly is different to the existing myGov account you may have) is a more secure way to access the various government online services and prove your identity online.  Your myGovID is accessed via an App stored on your smartphone or device and uses the inbuilt security features of your device (e.g. fingerprint or facial recognition) to protect your identity and prevent fraud.  Your myGovID is unique to you and cannot be shared by other users.

The Government has setup a dedicated website ( with more information on the setup and use of myGovID which we strongly recommend all business owners have a look at.

Once setup, your myGovID can be linked to your business accounts via the Relationship Access Manager (RAM).  The Principal Authority (e.g. Public Officer, Registered Trustee, Sole Trader) will need to login to the RAM to link their myGovID to the business records along with any other employees or users that act on behalf of the business.

Registrations for myGovID are open now and we strongly encourage all business clients to attend to their registrations early to avoid being locked out of the Government online services when existing AUSkeys are decommissioned.

If you require any assistance with the myGovID registration please do not hesitate to contact the team here at McPhails.

2019 Retrospective

As another year draws to a close it is a wonderful time for us all to reflect on what has been and look forward to what will be. Strangely 2019 was both a year of change and (surprisingly) a year of continuity.

After 17 years in Ellingworth Pde we decided to make a change and relocate the firm to our current premises at Suite 12, 602 Whitehorse Rd, Mitcham. Despite all the stress, hard work and tough decisions we are delighted with the end result with both our staff and our clients enjoying the new outlook.

We also welcomed two new additions to the team this year with Matt Beyer joining us in January as a Graduate Accountant to add extra capacity to the Tax and Business Services Team. The Audit team has also seen some growth with John Watty coming on board with us in July. John has been known to the team at McPhails for many years having been engaged to perform audits for us in the past. Both Matt and John complement the existing team well and add both capacity and experience to the firm.

From an economic sense, after almost 3 years going unchanged, the Reserve Bank made 3 quick cuts to the official cash interest rates, dropping them to a record low 0.75% in an attempt to boost employment and increase inflation. These rate cuts, along with extensions to the tax concessions for Small Business Entities, provide a number of opportunities for our business clients who are looking to grow.

However the biggest change we were all expecting this year turned out to be a surprise non-event. We, like many others, were bracing for the impact of the proposed tax changes which a Bill Shorten Labour Government was expected to introduce. In what was a perfect example of “don’t count your chickens before they hatch” Prime Minister ScoMo surprised us all on Election Day by returning the Coalition to power.

As a result, we aren’t expected any significant changes in the tax landscape for 2020 however who knows what the May budget will bring. In the meantime the focus from the ATO appears to be on closing the current “Tax Gap” to help bolster government revenues. We are expecting to see more active compliance from the ATO in relation to work related deductions and rental properties which highlights the need to keep appropriate records to substantiate all claims.

Looking ahead, 2020 will see us celebrate the 75th Anniversary of the business which has served so many of you for so many years. There is genuine excitement within our strong and eager team as we look to build on the momentum of the fresh start here in Mitcham and continue to provide the best service possible to all our wonderful clients.

From the whole team here at McPhail’s we wish you and your families a safe and happy festive season and a prosperous new year.

7 Magic Phrases That Can Save an Awkward Conversation

1.Pay a compliment

Why is it so easy to forget someone’s name within seconds of meeting them? Because, you weren’t really listening – you were too busy thinking about what to say next. One easy way to skirt that natural selfishness and propel any conversation forward is to open with flattery. When you meet someone for the first time, ‘Pay that person a compliment when repeating their name, thus helping to anchor and embed it even deeper into your memory,’ says professional mentalist Oz Pearlman, who sometimes has to remember the names of hundreds of people he just met for his act. If you compliment Alyssa on her necklace, you instantly prime you brain to recall her name the next time you see that necklace, Pearlman says. ‘As a bonus, everyone enjoys flattery, so that compliment can go a long way toward you being remembered as well.’

2.Ask lots of questions – good questions

Research shows that in conversations with unfamiliar people, we tend to rate the experience based on our own performance, not theirs. What’s more: the experience of talking about ourselves can be more pleasurable than food or money. So, how do you give your conversation partner the pleasure of a good conversation? Ask them questions – a lot of questions, and ones that call for more than vague one-word answers (a good rule is, if your question can be answered with ‘fine’, don’t ask it). Avoid work if you can; instead, ask about play – ‘What keeps you busy outside of work?’ is a good place to start. According to Debra Fine, author of The Fine Art of Small Talk, one question pretty much guaranteed to put someone in a positive mindset and open doors to their personality: ‘What has the highlight of your year been so far?’ This allows the person to show you her best self and, if her highlight includes a topic you’re interested in too, may lay the groundwork for a true friendship.

3.Make a game out of small talk

If you keep feeding a person questions and they keep giving you nothing back, go for the jugular and make it a game. According to Jeanne Martinet, author of The Art of Mingling, small talk should be playful like a game of tennis, not serious like a job interview. Her go-to game? ‘I’ll say something like, ‘Tell me three things about your company, and I’ll guess what company it is.’ Or, ‘What’s that you’re drinking? Wait – let me guess.’ Get them into the spirit.’

4.Try to make their day better

If your conversation partner still isn’t biting, make things even easier for them by asking games research Jane McGonigal’s favourite question: ‘On a scale of one to ten, how was your day?’ Anyone can think of a number between one and ten, McGonigal says, and they’re likely to elaborate on their answer as they go. But it gets even better. After they respond, ask them this: ‘Is there anything I can do to move you from a six to a seven (or a three to a four, etc.?’ You’d be surprised how happy this little gesture will make someone. This is what good listeners do in daily conversation.

5.Play the sympathy card

Ready for a cheater’s way to advance a conversation? Memorise three magic words: ‘that sounds hard.’ ‘Nearly everyone in the world believes their job to be difficult.’ Entrepreneur Paul Ford wrote in his viral essay, ‘How to Be Polite.’ ‘I once went to a party and met a very beautiful woman whose job was to help celebrities wear Harry Winston jewellery. I could tell that she was disappointed to be introduced to this rumpled giant in an off-brand shirt, but when I told her that her job sounded difficult to me she brightened and spoke for 30 straight minutes about sapphires and Jessica Simpson.’

6.Seek their opinion

This tip has been tested by perhaps our most tactful founding father, Benjamin Franklin. In his memoir, Franklin describes an ‘old maxim’ that helped him along in his political career: ‘He that has once done you a kindness will be more ready to do you another, than he whom you yourself have obliged.’ In other words, if you ask someone for advice or a favour and they oblige you, they will be psychologically primed to like you and help you again (today this phenomenon is known as The Ben Franklin effect). So, if you truly want to endear yourself to a stranger and show them you value their mind, ask for their advice on something. If they give it to you, they get to feel important and valued – and you might just learn something in the process.

7.Exit gracefully

When your conversation reaches a natural conclusion, pull the trigger by saying ‘I won’t keep you’ or ‘Give my regards to [mutual acquaintance]’ before making your escape. Adam Dachis, co-author of The Awkward Human Survival Guide, adds that context can provide you the perfect exit strategy. ‘If you’re at a party, excuse yourself to get a drink; if you’re at work, you can leave to get some coffee. You can also say, ‘It’s nice talking to you, but I have to talk to someone before they leave.’


Source – Readers Digest

15 Things successful people do in the last 10 minutes of the workday


Perhaps you spend the last 10 minutes of your workday staring at the clock, counting down the seconds until you’re free. Or, maybe you bury yourself in work until the very last minute – then you grab your stuff and run for the door without saying goodbye to your colleagues.

If either of the above scenarios sounds familiar, it may be time to assess your end-of-day routine.

‘How you finish the workday is very important’, says Michael Kerr, an international business speaker and author of ‘The Humour Advantage’. ‘It can set your mood for the rest of your day; it may impact your personal relationships, overall level of happiness, and how well you sleep that night; and it will set the stage for the next day.’

1. They stay focused.

‘This is a classic time when your mind can drift,’ explains Lynn Taylor, a national workplace expert and the author of ‘Tame Your Terrible Office Tyrant: How to Manage Childish Boss Behaviour and Thrive in Your Job’. Typically, you’re not as sharp at the end of the day.’

Try not to allow yourself to get distracted or caught up in non-work related activities at the very end of the day.

2. They update their to-do lists.

Successful professionals always keep an eye on their ever-changing to-do lists, Taylor says.

‘But in the last 10 minutes is when they also check their final progress against that day’s objectives,’ she says. ‘They revise their final list accordingly while in the moment, rather than abruptly leave and hoping they will remember all the nuances of that day in the morning.’

3. They review what they achieved.

Taylor says in addition to focusing on what you still need to do, its important to look back on what you’ve done.

Kerr agrees. ‘Taking even one minute to review what you achieved can give you a sense of accomplishment, and on a particularly trying and busy day it can remind you that you got more done than you realised,’ he says. ‘Happiness research tells us that doing a simple routine like this, and taking the time to reflect on what you accomplished, is a key way to boost your overall level of happiness.’

4. They determine their primary goals for tomorrow.

Successful people have a list of items ready for the morning, and they identify their primary objectives for the following day. ‘You may have two or three of them that are top of mind, but commit them to writing so you have a core foundation to work from the next morning,’ says Taylor.

‘The more you can get everything down on paper that is swirling through your mind, the more likely it is you’ll be able to focus on the rest of your life with a clear head and be prepared and ready to go the following day,’ adds Kerr.

5. They vet ‘urgent’ communications.

You’re down to the wire on your day, but the communications keep flowing; some urgent and some not – but all at the last minute. ‘This is when your time management skills are put to the test.’ Says Taylor. ‘Successful people are able to decide what requires a response and what can wait.’

You want to defer long conversations that are sensitive until you and your colleague are at your best: in the morning. ‘Consider a response that suggests the discussion be held at a specific time the next day’ she says. ‘Otherwise, the matter could last well into the evening when your mutual energy is low and you feel rushed. This deferral also gives you overnight to step back and think through your immediate reaction.’

6.  They take a moment to reflect on the day.

Successful people not only think about the projects they have handled that day; they try to analyse when and why things went right and wrong. ‘Savvy professionals know that if they’re not learning, they’re not growing,’ says Taylor.

7. They say thank you to someone.

Great workplaces are built on foundations of gratitude and recognition. ‘Creating a habit around thanking someone at the end of your workday is an incredibly effective way to boost your own happiness level and allow yourself and others to leave on a high note,’ says Kerr.

8. They review their schedule for the next morning.

There’s no worse way to start your day than arriving at the office and learning you have a big meeting in five minutes.

‘Successful people know to review their schedule and plan for the following day – and most importantly, visualise how the day will unfold,’ Kerr says. This will allow you to go into the next workday feeling better prepared, more confident and less stressed.

9. They don’t leave people hanging.

How terrible would you feel if you found out a co-worker waited around all night for you to send that file you promised, only to eventually realise you’ve already left for the day, and that file probably isn’t coming?

Successful people don’t always accomplish everything they planned to, or respond to every email they said they would – but they do at least let others know that they weren’t able to get to the task, or make the decision, or respond to their email today, and they usually provide a status update, as well.

10. They organise their desk and desktop.

Your projects take much longer to complete when you’re not organised. ‘Having an orderly desktop and desk will help you think more clearly and prioritise more effectively. It will also help you quickly find important documents when you need them.’ Says Taylor. ‘File digital and hard copy documents for easier access and greater efficiency when you need them next.’

11. They let everyone know they’re about to leave.

Successful people give their colleagues or employees a heads-up that they will be heading out in a few minutes.

This way, if anyone has anything urgent to discuss or ask you, they won’t do it when you’re literally walking about the door.

12. They let colleagues know how accessible they will be between now and the morning.

The most successful people take a minute to determine how accessible they can and need to be between now and the following day, and then they communicate that to whoever needs to know.

13. They say their goodbyes.

A friendly ‘goodnight’ is highly underestimated and requires very little effort. ‘It reminds your boss and team that you are a human being, not just a colleague,’ Taylor says. It also gives your co-workers a heads up that you’re leaving for the day.

14. They leave on a positive note.

Before you head out, give yourself a psychological boost by smiling, Taylor recommends. ‘It will prepare you to exude a more upbeat vibe as you check out with your co-workers.’ Successful leaders leave a good impression at the day’s end, as that’s the demeanour that sticks until the next morning.

15. They actually leave.

Successful people avoid the temptation to linger. They know how important work-life balance is, so they try to leave the office at a decent hour.

‘Staying around for no good reason will limit your level of energy and success when you need it tomorrow’, Taylor explains.



Jacquelyn Smith – Business Insider


The Wheel of Life

The Wheel of Life has been used throughout time for measuring the quality of our lives. Look at the example below and imagine that each piece of the pie represented an area of your own life. Imagine that each line is a spoke in a wheel, with the centre of the wheel representing 0% satisfaction and fulfilment in that area of your life and the outside represents 100% satisfaction and fulfilment with that area of your life.


If this were your Wheel of Life where would you currently be in each area of your life?

Take a few moments to draw a line in each piece of the pie representing where you believe you currently are in that area of your life. When you’ve finished, shade in the areas to get a true sense of the depths of each section and a sense of where to focus your energy.

Here are some suggested headings for each segment, feel free to use these or create your own to represent what is important to you in your life.

• Physical environment
• Business/Career
• Money
• Health
• Family
• Relationships
• Personal growth
• Fun time

If this were a wheel on a car called LIFE, how well would your car run?
How would it run if you were travelling at 25 kilometres per hour? How would it run if you were travelling at 100 kilometres per hour? What if you wanted to be a high achiever? Would the gaps cause you to stay on the road or would you be heading for the ditch?

If you’re like most people, you’re probably experiencing a certain level of discomfort with the quality of your ride! What about if you could find a way to round off your Wheel of Life so that you experienced balance across the areas that matter most to you? Imagine putting your energy, focus and time into the areas that matter most to you…what would that feel like? How would your life look? What would be different?

If there is any part of your current financial situation that you would like to improve, please feel free to con tact our office for a confidential chat.

The Comparison Trap: How to Enjoy (and Not Envy) the Success of Others

First thing in the morning, I check Twitter, only to have it list off for me all the ways I’ve already fallen behind. A colleague has released a new e-book. Two of my design heroes are announcing a collaborative project. One of my old college buddies has posted a video trailer for an upcoming online program, and she looks phenomenal, polished, charismatic, (I’m still in bed, bleary-eyed, and definitely not at my most telegenic.)

Am I really falling behind? Is anybody actually keeping score? Did any of these people post any of the updates with the intent of making me feel bad? Of course not. But if I’m not careful, it’s terribly easy to view my social media streams as a constant reminder of all the stuff I’m not doing, dreams I’m not fulfilling, and rooms I’ve failed to decorate in a Pinterest-worthy manner.

This isn’t a social media problem. It’s a comparison problem.

There isn’t a single thing about Twitter – or any of the other social media platforms I use – that’s designed to make me ask how I’m measuring up. That’s all me – an automatic, internal mechanism. It’s part ego (“But what does this say about me?”), part creative drive (“What more am I capable of?”), and part deep soul yearning (“How can I make an impact, leave a legacy, and matter?”).

And I know it’s not just me. I’ve spent the past year collaborating with leadership coach Tanya Geisler on researching how comparison works, what it costs us, and what it can teach us – and we’ve discovered that it runs rampant among just about every creative, growth-oriented person we know. In our comparison-soaked culture, it’s hard to avoid looking around at what other people are doing with their short time on earth, and slipping (often unconsciously) into “How am I stacking up?” mode. Here’s what we learned:

1. Don’t compare your insides to someone else’s outsides.
The first time I heard this excellent, if hard-to-implement, advice, I was suffering from a terrible case of envy. Some competitor or other had achieved an inspiring degree of success and I was complaining to a mentor about how unachievable it seemed to me. Her warning took me aback: Look, she told me. You have no idea what it took for them to get there. Don’t act like this was unearned, effortless, or pure dumb luck. And for Pete’s sake, don’t go thinking that because you read the press release, you have a single clue about what’s really going on behind the scenes.

2. You have no idea what it took for them to get there. Don’t act like this was unearned, effortless, or pure dumb luck.
She was absolutely right. I knew better, yet in the moment that I’d heard the news, I fell prey to reactive thinking and over-simplification. Because it’s much easier to look at someone “up there” and envy what they’ve got than it is to ask the tougher questions:
o What do they have that I wish I had?
o What do I admire about them? What are they modeling for me?
o What have they done to get where they are today?
o How does this relate to my own values?

When we reflect on these questions, we shift immediately out of comparison mode (that whole comparing-our-insides-to-their-outsides) and turn inwards, to face the heart of the matter: our own desires and fears.

Transform comparison into celebration

Admiration and envy are responses that point us toward what we value most. And when we become aware of what we value, we are much better positioned to create a life that’s richly satisfying.

Admiration and envy are responses that point us toward what we value most.
If you notice yourself admiring people who take creative risks, bring your full attention to the part of you that wants to dare more greatly. If you catch yourself envying the folks in your circles who are at ease with self-promotion, take some time to reflect on how you might share your triumphs in a way that feels totally YOU. Heck, if you’re obsessing over tennis players’ forearms, it could be a sign that you’re ready to revamp your fitness regime. You get the idea.

Use the Success of Others As a Mirror
Comparison can be a dark, stuck place, but only if you let it be. There’s gold to be found in your comparison habit, if you’re willing to look for it. The light we see in others can help us see our own – and appreciate it.

So the next time you catch yourself admiring or envying someone’s success, gifts, or particular brand of radiance – be it in a professional context, a personal one, or simply perusing magazine covers – take a moment to consider:

1. What qualities in them inspire me?
2. Where do I currently embody these qualities?
3. How might my expression of these qualities differ from theirs?
4. What can I learn from my desire to embody these qualities more fully?

Your Twitter feed may never look quite the same.

Article written by Lauren Bacon @laurenbacon

mcphail financial planning

Australia's Top 50 Financial Planners Announced for 2012

We are pleased to inform you that David Graham has once again qualified for a position in the Masterclass for Financial Planning 2012 as determined by “The Australian Financial Review Smart Investor” magazine and placed in the Top 50 financial planners in Australia.

The Masterclass awards were first introduced in 1998 and are carried out by Smart Investor magazine to provide investors and clients with a guide to the top planners in the country. Applicants must not only be licensed to provide financial advice but also be either: a Certified Financial Planner; Certified Practicing Accountant; or a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants.

Assessment is based on a rigorous 60 minute online exam which is set by experts in the financial services industry. The test gives planners the opportunity to demonstrate their technical expertise in areas like tax, superannuation (including SMSFs), social security, asset allocation, investment strategies, financial maths and estate planning.

More information about the award can be found on pages 23-29 of the February 2012 edition of “Smart Investor” magazine.

You may recall that Anne Graham was a finalist in the AFA Adviser of the Year Award late last year. We are extremely well positioned to continue meeting your financial planning needs in 2012 and beyond and the recognition awarded to us by our peers will give you confidence that you are in capable hands.

planning tools for finance

Anne Graham wins Victorian FPA CFP® Professional Best Practice Award

We are absolutely delighted to announce that Anne Graham has been awarded the 2013 Victorian FPA CFP® Professional Best Practice Award.

The FPA’s annual Awards recognise Australia’s best financial planners who deliver exceptional qualified and trusted financial advice using the highest standard of ethics, practice standards and professional conduct in the country. CEO of the FPA, Mark Rantall, said that the Best Practice Awards also serve as an important symbol of excellence for consumers seeking qualified financial advice:

“These awards recognise the best of the best. FPA members comply with some of the highest financial planning standards on a global stage. These Award winners have not only complied with the FPA Code, but in so doing have offered a considerable contribution to the profession through community involvement, mentoring and support to their local FPA Chapter.

“Our profession has been through a period of tremendous change in recent years and has made significant strides in advancing the global standing of the profession. These planners have, in spite of any interruption to business, persisted for their clients’ best interests.”said Rantall.

This is a great achievement that demonstrates the high quality advice that Anne provides to our clients.

For more information regarding the award, please visit the FPA website:

master class in financial management

What does Female Excellence look like in 2012?

Excellence in advice is more than just providing quality advice, it’s about going over and beyond your call of duty to provide the support and living tools people need – often to survive.

For female excellence in advice, the role doesn’t end as the client walks out the door, it’s an ongoing relationship of advice, and education that makes a difference not just on a client level, but on an industry level.

This award doesn’t just represent great client/adviser achievement, its represents a step forward in diversifying an industry. See three of the contenders for this year’s Female Excellence in Advice Awards via the link below:

financial planning melbourne

Latest Tax Table

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Tax Rates 2012-13 & 2013-14

Taxable income Tax on this income
0 - $18,200 Nil
$18,201 - $37,000 19c for each $1 over $18,200
$37,001 - $80,000 $3,572 plus 32.5c for each $1 over $37,000
$80,001 - $180,000 $17,547 plus 37c for each $1 over $80,000
$180,001 and over $54,547 plus 45c for each $1 over $180,000

Tax Rates for 2014-15

Taxable income Tax on this income
0 - $19,400 Nil
$19,401 - $37,000 19c for each $1 over $19,400
$37,001 - $80,000 $3,344 plus 33c for each $1 over $37,000
$80,001 - $180,000 $17,534 plus 37c for each $1 over $80,000
$180,001 and over $54,534 plus 45c for each $1 over $180,000