Wednesday, 14 December 2016
Tuesday, 13 December 2016
Should You Relocate? The Pros and Cons of Broadening Your Job Search
Pro: Exciting opportunities
Con: The stress of moving
Pro: Personal and professional growth
Con: It can be a costly gamble, both personally and financially
Tuesday, 1 November 2016
Are You a Leader? Honing The Skills that You Need to Succeed in Accounting
Look the Part
Speak with Confidence
Write with Style
Afraid of Failure? Don’t Be.
No risk, no reward.
Fix, don’t fixate.
Take the high road.
Monday, 10 October 2016
Working Remotely? Here’s How to Maximize Efficiency
Have a separate space specifically for work.
Be strict with your schedule.
Don’t become too isolated.
Wednesday, 5 October 2016
New Grads: Dress For Success!
Tailor your suits.
Keep it conservative, but add a little color
Try unique accessories.
Monday, 26 September 2016
Nailing the CFO Interview: The Day of the Interview
Dress for success.
Give yourself a 10-minute cushion.
Start the interview the moment you walk into the building.
Be relaxed… but not too relaxed.
Monday, 19 September 2016
New Job? Here’s How to Make the Best Impression
You might not know everything, but use everything you know.
Keep your ego in check.
Tuesday, 9 August 2016
Do you Know How to Self-Market?
- Don’t sell your job title—sell solutions. Your knowledge of GAAP isn’t as attractive to potential clients and employers as your history of successfully facing challenges and providing effective solutions. Describe exactly how your ideas and innovations have added organizational value and benefitted previous clients.
- Make your passion for your career evident. Even if you became an accountant because you’re good with numbers and it’s a solid career track, those perfectly reasonable motives won’t sell your ability as much as your excitement about your job and your future will.
- Emphasize your stellar interpersonal skills. Accountants have an unfortunate reputation for being introverted numbers-crunchers who are happier sitting alone at a desk than giving a presentation in front of an audience. Networking and relationship-building are hugely important professional skills. If you have fantastic customer relationship skills and possess the ability to influence people, you will be an extremely valuable acquisition for any organization.
Monday, 8 August 2016
Accounting Mentor Programs Part 3: Recognizing a Well-Structured Mentorship Program
In the final post of the mentorship series, Lewis Daidone discusses the importance of finding a high-functioning mentorship program with clear objectives. Lewis Daidone is a Certified Public Accountant and a consultant to tech companies and financial services firms.
Although mentorship programs are definitely becoming more common in the financial and accounting sectors, not all programs are created equal. Here are a few indicators that you’ve found a well-constructed and effective mentoring program.
- Goals are thoroughly defined. “Mentoring” can be a vague concept. When businesses treat mentoring programs like a cross between an introduction to the company culture and a probation period, they are failing to exploit their full organizational resources. Look for a program that has specific objectives. Does the company want to encourage cross-departmental familiarity? Does it want to give new hires the tools to pass the CPA exam? Does it want to optimize team-member performance?
- Timetables are set and maintained. One of the most common reasons mentorship programs fail is because of a lack of commitment to any set schedule. (This is particularly true during tax season, where offices get hectic.) There should be consistent meetings between the mentor and mentee throughout the duration of the mentorship. Furthermore, there needs to be regular benchmarking of achievements, so that progress can be assessed and challenges addressed. If there is no adherence to any schedule, it is likely that the program is going, or has gone, stale.
- The mentorship program is organization-wide. It might not be reasonable to expect every senior-level employee to mentor another employee, but everyone in the entire company has to be accessible to the mentorship program, and offer guidance when necessary.
- The program has strong oversight. The management team should make its interest in the success of the program evident by involving itself in its operations.
Mentorship programs can be a boon to both companies and individual employees. As workplace expectations continue to develop and industry practices continue to innovate, mentorship programs will become indispensable in helping organizations meet diverse challenges.
Lewis Daidone, a certified public accountant, works as an investment management consultant with BlackRock. Learn more about him by visiting this blog.
Monday, 11 July 2016
In this post, Lewis Daidone discusses the importance of following up after a successful job interview. Lewis Daidone is a CPA and consultant to several financial firms and tech companies.
Congratulations! You’ve scored an interview at a highly impressive financial firm, and it went exceedingly well. So, should you just wait for the inevitable call inviting you to join the team?
Even if you’re confident that you nailed your accountant job interview, without the gift of telepathy, you can’t be certain that you will actually be their newest hire. Keep your great interview fresh in their mind by applying strategic post-interview follow-up techniques.
Send a brief email to all of your interviewers
No more than two days after your interview, you might want to send a thank you message to the interview team—individually. Make sure you don’t wait; the final decision could be made quickly, and you should make sure you communicate before it’s too late. Don’t make it too long, just a few sentences that could serve as an elevator pitch. Also—triple check for grammatical errors and misspellings!
Connect via Social Platforms
Social media conversations can be tricky if done via Facebook, but LinkedIn is a great professional channel. (Twitter could also be useful, depending upon the company culture.) However, you have to assess the willingness of the hiring manager to engage in a social media conversation. If he or she divulged any professional affiliations or school associations, you might leverage those for a social network connection.
Call the Hiring Manager
Don’t make the phone call immediately—if you still haven’t heard anything after a week, then go ahead and call the manager for an update.
Whatever you do, don’t be afraid to take initiative. If done professionally, it will only impress your prospective employers. Even if you aren’t their first choice, your name may still pop up for another opening!Lewis Daidone, a certified public accountant, works as an investment management consultant with BlackRock. Learn more about him by visiting this blog.
Lewis Daidone discusses the fundamental differences between public and private accountants. Lewis Daidone is a Certified Public Accountant and consultant to tech companies and financial firms.
What makes accounting careers so attractive? Although they are definitely appealing to those of us with a natural facility for analysis, calculation, and finance, it’s the diversity of professional applications that makes them so dynamic. While there are numerous branches of accounting with slightly different focuses, there are two major career tracks accounting students can choose: public accounting or private accounting.
Those who work in a public accounting capacity will offer advisory, tax, analysis, auditing, and consulting services. They will typically work for public accounting firms—the largest being Ernst and Young, Deloitte, PricewaterhouseCoopers, and KPMG (known as the Big Four) —and will serve a broad array of clients from different industries. It is essential that public accountants not only have an accounting degree, but also be in possession of a Certified Public Accounting credential. Furthermore, it is extremely helpful for a public accountant to develop a strong and flexible understanding of a wide variety of industry practices and accounting transactions.
While public accountants will have to be in possession of a CPA designation, private accountants may only need a bachelor’s degree—although those who hold CPAs will command higher salaries. The main difference between public and private accountants is the private accountant’s dedication to a single organization; rather than having to constantly adjust to different industries and practices, the private accountant must only focus on one. It is the job of the private accountant to process company transactions (billing and payable), as well as to develop expertise in their industry in order to help management with daily operations. This means liaising with the heads of different departments, so developing excellent team building skills is critical.
Which to Choose?
Public accounting can be quite exciting—the client base is constantly changing, and public accountancy often requires a great deal of travel. Private accountants, on the other hand, work from a single office, and are surrounded by the same team every day, which might be more comfortable for a homebody kind of personality. There might also be more room for work-life flexibility, depending upon the private accountant’s industry.
Your decision to become a public or private accountant may depend upon your desired career trajectory, your need for variety, and your personal disposition. Nevertheless, both public and private accounting careers can be thoroughly rewarding, challenging, and satisfying.Lewis Daidone, a certified public accountant, works as an investment management consultant with BlackRock. Learn more about him by visiting this blog.
Thursday, 9 June 2016
GPAs for CPAs: What are Optimal Grade Point Averages?
In today’s post, Lewis Daidone talks about whether or not grade point averages are truly important when applying for accounting positions. Lewis Daidone is a Certified Public Accountant and a consultant for tech companies and financial services firms.
Make your GPA stronger
Easier said than done, but if your GPA isn’t where it needs to be, make a special effort to raise it. Choose your course load strategically—make sure your class levels are appropriate, and that some of them satisfy an inherent interest so that performing well comes easily. Participate in class. Take advantage of any extra-credit opportunities your professor provides. Develop a relationship with your instructors.
Have both Scholarship and Fellowship
What are your greatest strengths as a job applicant? Naturally, you have to demonstrate your profound understanding of accountancy, but what else can you bring to the table? The student who has a near perfect or even perfect GPA but who struggles with building professional relationships might not add real value to certain firms. However, an applicant with a successful track record of taking on difficult roles and inspiring confidence in others could be quite attractive. Make sure you make an effort to demonstrate your people-skills and facility with networking. On your resume, Provide examples on your resume of situtations where you stepped up and tackled challenging interpersonal situations, or proved your strong leadership ability.
Develop a Diverse Skillset
Having the kind of attitude, intellectual curiosity, and enthusiasm that a CPA firm values are highly impressive attributes. Enrich your resume with meaningful work experience, extracurricular activities, and—eventually—a CPA credential, and you’ll be a fine prospect for any organization.
Friday, 3 June 2016
Management Accounting and Supply Chain Management
In the modern business world, “supply chain management” is not just a buzz word; it is considered a key driver in the midst of foreign competition and offshore sourcing as well as global markets. Keeping a company’s supply chain performing well requires a high level of responsiveness, as does keeping the shelves in stores filled. Management accounting drives the necessary planning, monitoring and use of logistical information to maximize efficiencies throughout the supply chain.
Profit Driven Management Reporting
Supply chain management today involves increasing the speed of inventory and trimming costs. Accomplishing these tasks requires skills in management along with creativity. Companies compete based on how effectively they can move raw materials, parts and finished goods. Those that do it the best make the most profits. The reporting and analysis provided by the management accounting system provide the techniques and context to drive those profits.
There is no one size fits all management accounting solution for supply chains. Industries vary, business plans change, and strategies differ even within similar industries. It is important to use a system that works in the context of your business model, product mix and customers. The right management accounting system can be the difference between a mediocre company and a stellar performer..
Thursday, 12 May 2016
Prepping for the CPA Exam
Failed the CPA Exam? Don't Panic—Try Again!
Failing with a score of 70 – 74
Failing with a score of 70 or lower
Friday, 1 April 2016
For some, the role of an auditor conjures up thoughts of boring, tedious and repetitive tasks that provide little job satisfaction or excitement. Why on earth would anyone want to become an auditor?
Auditors must have a Bachelor's degree, usually in accounting, business administration, or finance. Many organizations value auditors with a background in information technology or law, but having a solid grasp of your industry is essential. Many auditors, particularly external auditors, will study for and take the CPA exam in order to be credentialed as a Certified Public Accountant, which is essential for auditing public companies.
Nationally, the median salary for auditors is $53,000 per year; $61,000 if you have your CPA.
Wednesday, 23 March 2016
Monday, 21 March 2016
Since consumer interest regarding environmentally friendly practices is now at an all-time high, it is important to demonstrate a company’s commitment to maintaining a green work environment. So everything from green packaging and sustainable manufacturing to paperless offices come under the purview of the environmental accountant to ensure the most efficient and cost effective means of maintaining an ecologically responsible workplace.
Environmental accountants must possess a Bachelor's degree; acquiring a Certified Professional Environmental Auditor's credential is essential for career growth and maximizing earning potential.
In my next post, I'll discuss forensic accounting.
Lewis Daidone is a Certified Public Accountant and a consultant to financial services firms and technology companies.
Tuesday, 8 March 2016
Also called a financial analyst, a budget analyst monitors and organizes the finances for his or her organization. This includes working across departments to determine budgetary needs, drafting proposals for funding, making financial projections, and drawing up budgets for any special projects. This can be either in the public or private sector, as well as in nearly any industry (health care, tech, arts and entertainment, travel, food and beverage, etc.)
Monday, 22 February 2016
Image source: corportatehub.hk
Image source: guidemesingapore.com
Tuesday, 26 January 2016
Image source: forbes.com
Image source: businessinsider.com