10 Ways to Stay in Control

Number 10Respect your staff … and vice versa.

By Ed Mendlowitz
Call Me Before You Do Anything: The Art of Accounting

A new year has just begun. Start it by getting and staying in control.

MORE: 20 Best Practices for Staff Training and Retention | Why Create an Accounting Firm Business Model? | The Clients Who Keep You Awake at Night | Creating a Cross-Selling Culture | Cross-Selling Beyond Your Comfort Zone | Value Pricing in Uncharted Waters | I Am an Accountant Because of Clients like Stanley | Advising Cheapskates
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Here are some ways to do this.

  1. Keep desk clean.
  2. Open postal mail and take care of, assign, file or toss it. Neat piles become tomorrow’s mess.
  3. Do the same with emails – open, take care of, assign, file or delete them.
  4. Return (or have someone return) all phone calls with calls or emails. With emails you don’t have to ask about their weekend, vacation or sick pet.
  5. Schedule work realistically and keep promises or let people know early on that a commitment cannot be met and reschedule it realistically.
  6. Establish checklists, standardize procedures and make sure they are followed.
  7. Your staff needs to report to you on schedule, meet deadlines, use the checklists and follow the procedures.
  8. Partners and managers need to get back to staff with open items and answers to questions, and your staff’s schedules need to be respected.
  9. Think and be orderly.
  10. Be quick, open and frank with clients (or partners and staff) when surprises, errors or problems develop.

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