Public accounting has become a people-intensive business. Technology has changed client expectations, requiring the accounting professional to engage in an advisory; an interactive role with the client. Therefore, we can no longer rely solely on technical competence but must develop professionals who are able to handle a consultative approach. This requires strong communication, interpersonal, and problem solving skills.
Additionally, individuals must have a good business sense and be able to share complex information. Advancement opportunities are no longer based only on technical skills but also on many intangible characteristics and abilities. These abilities and dedication will better determine progression rather than years as an accountant.
In general, the career path at Froehling Anderson has key areas that determine which individuals move to the next level:
- Develop technical skills and increase knowledge.
- Accept personal responsibility for providing outstanding client focused service.
- Pass the CPA exam or some other certification.
- Gain expertise in a specialty; obtain additional certification.
- Develop business development skills; expand networks, get involved in associations, build on referral sources, write articles, represent FA at events, give presentations and meet with prospects.
- Look for solutions; be that “go to person” for providing client and firm solutions.
- Be a leader, a firm advocate, and a team player.
- Learn and develop as a professional; listen to mentor/engagement supervisor/department heads; seek their counsel, and improve performance.
- Motivation: self-starter, seek opportunities to expand knowledge, exceed minimal requirements.
- Thoroughness: persist in the face of obstacles, finish what you start, embrace quality, get all the facts, resolve questions.
- Teamwork: merge personal ambition with those of the firm, work effectively with others, consider the firm’s welfare as one’s own.
- Positive Attitude: develop and maintain internal relationships, accept criticism, display enthusiasm, demonstrate an interest in the firm, display confidence in skills and ability.
- Self-Reliance: make sound decisions of increasing complexity, offer opinions, solve problems creatively.
- Integrity: do what is right, exhibit balance, discipline, maturity.
- Communication Skills: provide clear instruction, write/speak intelligently and professionally; comprehend questions and issues.
- Supervisory Skills: demonstrate fairness, organization and approachability; delegate, make decision and provide constructive feedback.