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Results of a new CPA Trendlines career outlook survey show optimism among staffers about management support for personal advancement and commitment to training. But firms appear to be struggling to keep up with staff demands.
Each offers low-cost CPE, vendors with new products and services, and the chance for professional networking:
And the 3 questions you should be asking yourself today.
By Jody Padar
The Radical CPA
I had just come off a really bad tax season.
This was about eight years ago now, and I knew there had to be a better way. I left a mid-sized firm, with seven partners and about 50 other employees and I joined my dad’s firm — literally and figuratively. Figuratively, because many of his technology and processes were “old school.” READ MORE →
By Sandi Smith Leyva
The Accountant’s Accelerator
If you’re an expert at something, don’t be the best-kept secret on your block. Get the word out about what you can offer others, and one way to do that easily, especially if you’re an accountant, is to build your reputation.
Here are 10 quick tips to boost yours.
READ MORE →
By Ed Mendlowitz
Tax Season Opportunity Guide
One way to guarantee extra work is to have everything always done differently each time it is done.
Not establishing uniform procedures is bad business and unnecessarily consumes part of your life. Consistency in performance reduces work and review time and creates a greater reliance on the staff people. READ MORE →
If you don’t ask, you can’t know. If not now, when?
By Jean Marie Caragher
The 90-Day Marketing Plan for CPA Firms
Tax season is the perfect time to identify cross-selling opportunities, strengthen client relationships and ensure client satisfaction.
Consider asking your clients the following 14 questions this tax season. You may discover a new gold nugget of opportunity: READ MORE →
Get real. Get up from your desk. Go for a ‘gemba’ walk.
By Tom Hood
The Radical CPA
I remember sending a video intro to Jody Padar’s first meeting of IC Opportunities where I read a quote from the February 2012 edition of Fast Company magazine in which the editor, Robert Safian, introduced the concept of “Generation Flux” and it reminded me of Jody and her tribe:
“In our hyper-networked, mobile, social, global world, the rules and plans of yesterday are increasingly under pressure; the enterprises and individuals that will thrive will be those willing to adapt and iterate, in a disciplined, unsentimental way… Generation Flux is a term that describes all of this — the chaotic business era that we have moved into — as well as the people who are poised to thrive in this environment.”
So what is a “gemba walk,” you might be thinking? READ MORE →
By Marc Rosenberg
Retirements & Buyouts
Vesting of retirement benefits is not unique to CPA firms. But vesting concepts for accounting firms are somewhat unique and are important to understand.
MORE ON BUYOUTS: Compromise Is In Order for Some Goodwill Payouts | When Retiring Partners Take a Specialty With Them | If Clients Leave, Do You Reduce Retirement Benefits? | Why You’ll Get Less from Your Partners in a Buyout than You Might by Selling the Whole Firm | Three Ways to Calculate Goodwill Payable in Partner Buyouts, None of Them Great | Eat What You Kill? Then Maybe ‘Book of Business’ Is for You | The Multiple of Compensation Method, Fully Explained | The Ins and Outs of AAV for Goodwill | 5 Points to Consider When Paying Out Goodwill | Clients Leaving? Time to Reduce Retirement Benefits | How to Set Terms and Limits for Goodwill Payouts | 4 Ways to Decide How to Pay Out Capital | Partners May Balk at Guaranteeing Retirement Obligations
Employee retirement plans are intended essentially as “savings programs” that people can take with them when they leave the firm, even if they depart well in advance of a normal retirement age. When there is employer matching, vesting provisions are common, and vesting is fairly rapid. In contrast, vesting in partner retirement plans is intentionally slow.
By Ida O. Abbott
Sponsoring Women: What Men Need to Know
Sponsorship is a personal undertaking. A man who sponsors a woman takes it upon himself to advance her career. He puts his reputation on the line for her and tells the world she is worth it.
She still has to earn that promotion, but his solid, public vote of confidence – and the power he puts behind it – at least gives her a fair chance to get it.
MORE ON SPONSORING WOMEN FOR LEADERSHIP: And Now, a Few Words About Sex (and 14 Tips) | Make Flexible Scheduling Work for Everyone | Your Protégée Needs Your Feedback | 9 Ways to Promote Your Protégée to Others | 8 Ways to Help Your Protégée Focus on Career Opportunities | How to Start an Effective Sponsorship … and Follow Through | 3 Ways to Initiate Informal Sponsorship | How to Establish a Sponsor-Protégée Relationship | 3 Roadblocks to Women and Men Working Together Well | Fear of Sex and Rumors Inhibits Sponsorship | Why Women Resist Networking and Powerful Role Models | Women Must See Politics as Leadership to Get Ahead | Mommy Bias Persists | Different Standards, Double Binds Challenge Women | 5 Ways Gender Bias Plays Out at CPA Firms | 3 Reasons Why Men Don’t Pick Women Protégées | Men Advance 2 to 1 over Women without Sponsors | 18 Ways Sponsors Can Help Their Protegees | The 6 Market Advantages of Women-Led Firms | Beyond Mentoring: Why Sponsoring Women for Leadership Matters
In return, sponsors receive personal satisfaction and capable and loyal leaders who help them achieve their business goals and build their legacy. READ MORE →
And 5 practical ideas to implement measures to create real work-life balance at your firm.
By Hitendra Patil
Do you want employees who have:
- greater engagement in their jobs
- higher levels of job satisfaction
- stronger intentions to remain with their employers
- less negative and stressful spillover from job to home
- less negative spillover from home to job
- better mental health
Aren’t these the things most accounting firms would want their employees to experience? READ MORE →
By Roman H. Kepczyk
Quantum of Paperless
In the United States, QuickBooks is the most dominant small business accounting product on the market and will be the application that the majority of the firm’s clients use.
Therefore, it is obvious that the firm must become proficient with supporting QuickBooks.
MORE ON TECH SPENDING: How to Choose the Right Client Portal Solution | Streamlining Bill-Paying at CPA Firms | Digital Tools Streamline Audit Production | Making Digital Tax Process Easier Is All About the Workflow | When to Adopt Microsoft’s New Office Apps | What Windows 8 Means for How Accountants Will Work in the Future | How to Choose the Right Backup System | How to Know It’s Time to Scrap Your Old Server
Unfortunately, one of the biggest wastes of time is when firms support too many older versions of the software, which often leads to incompatibilities that can corrupt the database and make it unusable for clients.
READ MORE →
‘Generation Flux’ embraces adaptability, flexibility, openness, decisiveness.
By Gretchen Pisano
The Radical CPA
With a lifelong commitment to continuous learning, CPAs are some of the most willing learners you’ll ever come across.
Today’s new generation of CPA embraces adaptability and flexibility, an openness to learning from anywhere, decisiveness tempered by the knowledge that business life today can shift radically.