It can be quite difficult to define wisdom, but if the philosophers are to be believed, it comes with age. Perhaps this is because wisdom is truly a compilation of knowledge and experience.
With wisdom comes a tolerance for the vagaries of life and an understanding of what really matters. It provides a sense of the big picture and instills in its owner calm and focus. Whether you are at the start of your accounting career, or have been working for several years, this post humbly offers five pieces of wisdom to help enhance your professional success and pave the way for career advancement.
We like to think of the lone wolf, standing its ground and succeeding in spite of adversity, but no person is an island and at some point, everyone needs an advocate. Throughout your accounting career it’s important to build strategic relationships and connect with managers other than your direct report. If you leave the company, transition out with grace, not bitterness. Burning bridges only serves your ego, not your personal brand. Most importantly, find a mentor, someone you can trust implicitly who will guide your career and help you troubleshoot when the moment arises.
To keep your accounting career in an upward trajectory, it is critical to continue to grow your professional skill set. Whether it’s getting a designation, or taking additional courses, a commitment to lifelong learning keeps you relevant and marketable. Learn everything you can about the company you work for and continue to develop your cross functionality. This makes you a person of value in your organization, more likely to survive layoffs and to be promoted.
Lead By Example
During your accounting career if you want your team to demonstrate professionalism, innovation and ethical behaviour, then model these qualities yourself. True leaders don’t ask their staff to do anything that they wouldn’t do themselves. They remember their roots, what it was like to be in the trenches and earn the respect of their team by consistently pushing themselves to be better.
Set Goals and Be Persistent
Setting measurable and achievable goals is an intrinsic part of any successful accounting career. Goal setting allows us to envision where we would like to be in one, three, or even five years down the road. It forces us to think strategically about how to arrive at our destination and engenders in us, hopefully, a persistence to get there in spite of setbacks.
Follow the Opportunities, Not the Money
It takes a brave person to follow the opportunities and not just the money. This is not to say that opportunity and financial reward are mutually exclusive, but rather that sometimes to advance our accounting career, or follow our passion, we have to take a small step backwards. If opportunity comes knocking, answer the door, you might be surprised what is waiting for you on the other side.
We don’t know if youth is wasted on the young, but we do know that as we live our life we gain in experience and insight. Throughout our accounting career we are offered numerous opportunities to grow. If we are wise, we will set goals and be persistent in our pursuit of them. We’ll follow the opportunities, build relationships and lead by example. And at the end of the day, if we’re also a little bit lucky, we’ll reflect on our accounting career with satisfaction.
Let us know what you think! At Clarity Recruitment, we’re always interested in hearing from accounting and finance professionals like yourselves, who are ready for new, exciting opportunities that can take their careers to the next level. And be sure to follow us on Twitter (@clarityrecruits) and connect with us on LinkedIn and Facebook for more great tips and advice.