What Accountants And Professional People Need To Move Forward In Their Career
As an accountant by profession and through working exclusively with professional people at Goals and Achievements, I see a lot of people who are fantastic within their area of professional expertise but really struggle to get ahead in their career.
It would be easy to say that it is simply a case of mastering the interview process and all will be different. The reality, from working with clients and having personally climbed the career ladder from £30 a week Payments Clerk to Finance Director of a major organisation, is very different.
So here is my list of what I see as key to moving forward in your career and achieving the results and success you desire:
Ability To Manage A Team
Many professional people get promoted on the basis of their technical competence. They then find themselves managing a team, projects, processes and systems and often find it a struggle. It is easy to dismiss this as the soft and fluffy stuff but in my experience being able to manage is not optional.
Ability To Lead
By that I mean the ability to drive things forward, get buy-in and support and contribute beyond your area of direct expertise.
Ability To Build Relationships
These days it is key to build relationships within your own area, across the wider organisation and even with people in client or partner organisations.
Ability To Make The Complex Simple
This is essentially about providing expert advice in plain and simple ways to the lay person.
Strong Communication Skills
Successful professional people can get their message across easily verbally and in writing. They also are great listeners too.
Ability To Work With People At All Levels
You need to be able to get your message across and create relationships with people at all levels across the organisation.
Be Able To Run and Lead Projects
These might be related to a new system implementation or integrating an acquisition.
Able To Influence
Quite often that means being able to adapt their style to fit the person or the situation they are dealing with.
Create and Deliver Change
Challenging economic times necessitates innovation from everyone, including professional people.
Build And Maintain A Network
A network is not just a source of job opportunities but a group you can call on for advice and support or simply to bounce ideas off.
Vitally important if you are working in a professional services firm that makes its money selling services to clients.
How to utilise IT to facilitate efficiency, effectiveness and cost reduction.
In particular, create a CV or résumé that gets you noticed.
Whether people like it or not, a lot of the decision about recruiting comes down to how well people perform in interviews.
A Good Understanding Of Business
You don’t need to be an expert in every area of business, but you do need to have a good understanding of different areas of the business and the dependencies.
Confidence And Self-Belief
This is what will ultimately drive you forward even when the going gets tough.
The Bottom Line: Being highly competent in your professional field is no longer a guarantee of long term success in your career.
To learn more about getting ahead in your career check out my audio masterclass at www.goalsandachievements.co.uk