It’s that time of year again where you get to read a lot of blogs that start with ‘It’s that time of year again.’ So here is mine. I thought it would be appropriate to add to your resolutions that you most likely won’t accomplish. Here is a list of the must have resolutions for the accountants of the world that hopefully aren’t so difficult that you’re kissing them goodbye halfway through February.
Pass the CPA Exam – A great resolution for 2017 is to finally pass that pesky CPA exam. There is no better way to advance your career in the accounting profession than having those three letters after your name. While studying during busy season isn’t recommended (unless you are a little crazy) this is a solid resolution to tackle post-April.
Start working towards that promotion – Since we are on the topic of career advancement, it’s time to start gearing up for a promotion. If you want to take your career to the next level you should start acting the part. To clarify – employers aren’t looking to promote you with the hopes that you’ll work out in your next role. Employers want to know before they promote you that you’ll crush it. Start taking on additional responsibilities that would normally be assigned to those at the level you’re trying to get to and you’ll be well on your way. If you’re a first-year accountant, though, it’s probably not a good idea to start asking for work usually completed by a Senior Manager or a Partner… just sayin’.
Stay active and be healthy – This is even more important for those of you about to go through busy season. It’s easy to ignore your usual gym routine and normal eating habits because you get bogged down with work. Make sure you keep going to the gym and you’ll be rewarded with more energy to tackle those long Saturdays. Busy season obviously isn’t anyone’s favorite 3 ½ months, but keeping up with your healthy living will ease that pain.
Spend more time with family and friends– This resolution goes for everyone on the planet. Who doesn’t want to spend more time with friends and family? Similar to staying healthy, don’t let your busy schedule over the next few months take you away from the ‘normal’ aspects of your life. It’s easier not to loathe busy season if you keep some semblance of your weekend routine (excluding most of Saturday…). Shutting yourself off from the outside world is the worst thing to do during busy season. Stay positive and surround yourself with good people and life is always better.
Network– I know it’s been beaten into your brains throughout your college years, but this will never change. You should always make an effort to expand your personal network. You never know when meeting Joe Banker or Jane Controller at a local networking event will lead to your next big client or even your next big career change. As I sit here writing this amazing blog I can honestly say if it wasn’t for some simple networking I wouldn’t have the job I have now. Make an effort to attend happy hours and off-site professional development events this year and you’ll be well on your way.
Get organized - With so much focus on productivity these days it’s becoming increasingly more important to be organized. Do a little research and you’ll come across hundreds of apps and/or desktop add-ons that’ll help you get your life in order both professionally and personally. One thing that I like to do at the end of each day is prioritize my task list for the following day. That makes it easier to show up the next morning and get to it. You might even find the perfect app that helps you pass the CPA exam, get promoted, be fit, have more friends, and become a networking superstar – you never know! If I was more organized maybe I would have listed this one first…