Five PowerPoint Rules to Live By

Drawing of man giving presentationEssential tips for keeping the focus where it belongs: On you.

By Steven E. Sacks
Solutions 2 Results

Have you ever attended a conference where the presenter plans to supplement his or her key topics by showing an illustration of what is being currently said?

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Do I look at the speaker or do I look at the slides? Will the slides be available later or should I take notes now? Should I move up 50 rows so the microscopic wording improves to barely readable? Can I ask the speaker to back up a couple of slides?

Your Firm’s Biggest Assets Walk out the Door Every Day

There are nearly 80 million Baby Boomers today, and this cohort of 65 and older is projected by the US Census Bureau to reach 83.7 million in the year 2050. By 2030, more than 20 percent of U.S. residents are projected to be aged 65 and over, compared with 13 percent in 2010 and 9.8 percent in 1970. A large part of this growth is due to the aging of baby boomers (individuals born in the United States between mid-1946 and mid-1964), who began turning 65 in 2011 and are now driving growth at the older ages of the population. Every day, 10,000 people turn 65. There are more than personal financial issues at stake here.

What does this mean for the CPA profession?

So Much to Do and So Little Time: Achieving Success in the C-Suite

invisible business man offers hand shake

 How to learn and teach leadership skills.

Solutions 2 Results

There is no one right way that leadership can be defined. A high-level title is not a definition. Neither is continuous delegation of work without context nor unilateral decision making.

Leadership is about attitude, influence, coaching, creating and sharing; a conscious awareness of mission and walking the talk in values. In a word, leadership is an art.This differs from management, which is basically a science that produces quantifiable results that can be measured against expectations.

Leadership imparts a sense of purpose for staff to build a greater commitment in its work; it creates an emotional, as well as an intellectual investment. Instilling the “why” instead of the “what” in your staff allows it to have a sense of fulfillment and purpose, not just a means of checking an item off a “to do” list.

Technology companies over the past 25 years have exhibited this philosophy. There are those who put the stake in the ground with goals that have been uplifting. Apple set out to change the world. IBM recovered from missed opportunities with its campaign to build a smarter planet. Google, well, we know about Google. It is not only a brand but has morphed into a verb. These companies "walk the talk."


Can We Please Refer to Accounting as a Profession?

rose“A profession by any other name…” (With apologies to William Shakespeare).

By Steven E. Sacks
Solutions 2 Results

Profession: n. Calling requiring specialized knowledge and often long and intensive academic preparation.

Maybe I am just cranky, or maybe I have a valid point. Far too often I hear accounting being referred to as an industry rather than a profession. Let us be honest. Accounting is a profession that requires years of study and experience, culminating–if one desires–in a CPA credential after successfully passing an arduous two-day, four-part online exam. This does not even include the yearly continuing professional education requirements of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and state boards of accountancy to maintain a license to practice as a CPA.

How often do we read or hear accounting referred to as an industry? In my opinion, too often: and, it is always an incorrect reference. Accounting, is, in fact, a profession, and like any other profession (e.g. legal, medical, or education), requires specialized knowledge and training.