6 Leadership Challenges Through COVID and Beyond

illustrationHow do you handle them?

By Anthony Zecca

Within every firm, every leader (edge or center) faces challenges every day. Sitting here in 2020 as I write this book, the challenges presented by COVID-19 are seismic in terms of impact as well as being totally unanticipated. COVID-19 has forced firm leaders to examine their own firm down to its very core and to make decisions that challenged their leadership in ways never imagined.

MORE: Edge Leaders Share 7 Strengths | Leadership Must Drive Culture | Leading from the Edge
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COVID-19 has also resulted in new leaders emerging from the chaos of the pandemic to rise to a level of Edge leadership. Edge leaders will see the opportunities created by COVID-19 while center leaders will only see the challenges. Edge leaders will examine every challenge and find the opportunity making the firm stronger as a result.
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Seven Deadly Sins That Will Destroy Your Firm

Businessman in an umbrella sails in storm in the nightThe pandemic actually brought us a positive.

By August J. Aquila

My experience has been that firms suffer not only economically, but also professionally. Clients and staff also suffer because the following behaviors hurt client service and staff development.

MORE: The Morning After the Merger | 6 Action Steps for a Smooth Retirement Transition | The Eternal Riddle of Being an Effective Leader | 7 Pieces of Leadership Advice | Tomorrow’s Leader in 9 Bullet Points | 5 Ways to Get Clients to Accept a New Pricing Philosophy | 11 Alternative Pricing Methods

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If you notice any of these in your firm, act today to change the culture.

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Edge Leaders Share 7 Strengths

Here’s a clear picture of what this kind of leadership looks like.

By Anthony Zecca

Let’s take a stroll down memory lane and think about the leaders you have had in the past.

MORE: Leadership Must Drive Culture | Leading from the Edge
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If you are like me, your experience reflects some really good leaders and some poor leaders, with most being in the middle, i.e., average center leaders. READ MORE →

Leadership Must Drive Culture

Superhero businesswoman wearing shadow capeBehavior will drive the bus off the road.

By Anthony Zecca

“Culture is like the wind. It is invisible; yet its effect can be seen and felt.” – Bryan Walker, partner and managing director, Ideo

MORE: Leading from the Edge
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Edge leaders are magnificent creators and stewards of a winning culture. I use the concept of “creating” because, regardless of what process is used to develop the culture of the firm, it is the firm leader who either gives life to it or modifies it through action and communication. Edge leaders reflect the firm culture in all their actions, and they focus on ensuring that the firm’s performance is achieved within the culture and roadmap (strategy) that creates a standout, high-performing firm.
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Leading from the Edge

Unlocking the secret factor for growth and profitability.

With this article, CPA Trendlines launches a new weekly column by Anthony Zecca, author of the soon-to-be published “Leading from the Edge,” available exclusively from CPA Trendlines.

By Anthony Zecca
Leading from the Edge

Let’s talk about leadership – the type of leadership necessary to drive an organization to become a standout, high-performing organization. Although many of the principles are applicable to any middle-market organization, I have focused on professional service firms and within that, accounting firms where I spent my entire career.

“Every firm, every firm leader, every partner and every team member can stand out and be a top performer. It’s a choice and a commitment to excel.”

Throughout my career, I have worked with some fabulous standout organizations, some that were just improving a little each year and some that could not get out of their own way. I have worked with many leaders who consistently drove their organizations to excellence and significant growth in revenue and profits outperforming most in their industry.

I started to wonder, was there one factor that these standout organizations all shared?

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5 Ways to Build Teamwork

Set the tone for your staff.

By Ed Mendlowitz
The CPA Trendlines Practice Doctor

QUESTION: My staff seems to have “wandered” away from feeling this is a firm – that we are all in this together – to becoming a bunch of people who happen to work at the same address. Do you have any suggestions to get them to pull together?

MORE PRACTICE DOCTOR Q&A: How Many Hours Should Staff Work? | Is This a Rut?  | Taking Over Poorly Done Work | When to Offer Profit Sharing | What’s In a Title? | Managing Partners Should Drop their Book of Business | What’s Lousy, the Client or Your Approach? | Not the MP, Still a ‘Managing’ Partner | Checklist for Running a Practice
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ANSWER: Yes – it’s called leadership.
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