Q&A: Lisa Tierney on Creating a Great Place to Work

Thanks to the economic bust, the staffing crisis for CPA firms seems to have evaporated.

So here’s the question: Does creating a “Great Place to Work” still mean anything these days?

Lisa Tierney
Lisa Tierney, Coaching and Consulting

Lisa Tierney
Tierney Coaching & Consulting

I spent twenty years employed in corporate America and for most of that time, I enjoyed it thoroughly! However, due to certain changes in American culture, such as: the recent economic turmoil, the influence of various foreign work ethics and markets, and what I would consider to be a debilitating strong-hold to a politically correct status, the corporate American culture has become a fear-driven environment which often disengages and dis-empowers the workforce that it so desperately relies on.

I have many conversations with managing partners of CPA firms who reveal the sentiment that professionals today should "just be happy to have a job." This may be true, but is that an excuse to ask for more hours or to demand increased productivity on a restrained budget?

I've heard about canceled holiday parties and all kinds of perks being cut while CPA professionals are being asked to work harder than ever before.

Truth be told, the workforce that any CPA firm has right now can offer much more in terms of talent and resources than might be imagined. They key is to empower the workforce so they want to contribute to the growth of the firm in a way that suits their comfort zone, showcases their abilities and allows them to shine.

It's all about empowerment and identifying motivators for positive change.

Lisa Tierney is a certified professional coach and marketing consultant at TIERNEY Coaching & Consulting, Inc. She is also the president of the Philadelphia Chapter of the Association for Accounting Marketing.

2 Responses to “Q&A: Lisa Tierney on Creating a Great Place to Work”

  1. Anonymous

    Hi Rick,

    In my opinion, many firms are scrambling so fast to recapture and retain business they’ve lost sight of their mission to create “a great place to work.” This attitude takes an internal toll on the staff resulting in low morale, fear, backbiting, and all around negativity.

  2. Olivia Riley

    “A Great Place to Work” signifies the following:

    1. A firm that values an individual’s talents and encourages each professional to reach their potential.

    2. A great firm puts its clients first and tries to meet their needs by providing quality services.

    3. Employees need to feel loyalty from the employer so they will in turn return it.

    4. Professionals need to concentrate on building a great working relationship with the clients.

    I believe these are the ingredients missing from the personal service industry.

    In this economy, clients need to feel they are necessary to the firm and able to see the quality of the services received.