Monday, February 28th, 2022

Are They Succeeding?

“Success is not final; failure is not fatal: It is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston Churchill

You have scrambled to hire enough qualified people to help the firm make it through tax season. Now that you have them, will you be able to keep them?

Workers want to know how they are doing. Are they making progress quickly enough? What does their career path look like? What more can they do?

Sad to say, CPA firm partners and managers don’t often communicate continually, with clarity, about a person’s job performance. Some tend to save their comments until it is time for a more formal feedback session. That doesn’t work any longer.

This topic came in recently in a discussion with one of my clients. The topic was scheduling. Were they doing enough to keep everyone busy? Some staff members didn’t speak up when they didn’t have enough work. The firm does have a person in charge of coordinating the scheduling function, that’s the first step.

Here’s what I tell young people working in a CPA firm. If you don’t have enough work on your schedule, you should be worried. Here’s how it goes:

Tony Partner informs the scheduler that John Jones Excavating Company’s work has arrived and he needs a Senior to do the work. He would like Betsy but don’t give it to Terry. Others often say they don’t want their work assigned to Terry. No communication has been directed to Terry. It is the simple fact that word has spread throughout the firm that Terry’s work is sub-standard yet, no one has told Terry.

If someone is not performing well, CPAs tend to shun them. Definition of shun: “to avoid deliberately and especially habitually.”

Managers and partners – be very honest and tell them exactly what you tell each other about them. Give them guidance on what to do about it, mentor them and if that doesn’t work – deal with it.

  • "Successful people do what unsuccessful people are not willing to do. Don't wish it were easier; wish you were better."
  • Jim Rohn

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