Guest articles

Protect Your Beneficiary's Inheritance

By, Jeffery Voudrie, CFP - An inheritance is the precious fruit of years of labor. It is an expression of love. Nowadays, more than ever, an inheritance is something that should be protected. All too often, inheritances are squandered or lost because of a lack of planning by those giving it. Read on to discover how to easily change that.There are many dangers that can threaten the inheritance you leave your children or heirs. The number one concern of many of the people that I talk with is that an inheritance will be lost if the beneficiary gets divorced.

Attract and Retain Quality People by Developing Talent Now

By: Eric Hunt - A major challenge in the accounting industry today is attracting and retaining quality talent. This issue seems to be discussed everywhere: industry conferences, partner meetings, media outlets, and college campuses. Rarely a day goes by that I do not talk to a firm that is worried about finding and keeping great team members. In the October issue of Inside Public Accounting, their Annual Analysis of Firms revealed how this is the #1 challenge faced by firms today.
Community News

Organizational Behavior: We Need More Respect for Emotions in Business

By, Phyllis Weiss Haserot - It’s holiday time, so is it OK if we talk about emotion?It seems the more educated we are, the more we try to rely on rational argument and extrinsic motivation to convince people to change their attitudes and actions about such things as diversity, generational differences, client service and client acquisition, succession planning, and flexibility - just to name a few emotionally-charged issues in the workplace.
A&A

Pre-Tax Season Media Tip for Tax Practitioners

Before tax season snows you under, get the attention of your local media. They can keep you visible even when you're not.Do you have aggressive partners who want brand equity? Create a spreadsheet of these partners, their areas of service expertise and industry concentrations to send to key reporters. If you have media savvy partners who are willing to promptly return calls from a reporter on deadline, you might include the partner's cell phone number on the spreadsheet. If a partner is unable to return calls promptly, do not include that partner with your media relations efforts.

Questions To Ask Yourself Before You Head To The Office Party

By, Lydia Ramsey - One thing you can count on during the holiday season is the obligatory office party. No matter what the size of the organization, there is always an effort to bring coworkers together for one more moment of merriment.
Community News

The Power of Clarity on Expectations

By, Phyllis Weiss Haserot - When I talk with young partners, managers, counsel and associates at many professional firms, I hear a lot of similar concerns, uncertainties and insecurities relating to their status and their future.
Practice Management

Keeping up With the Jones’s: How Third-Tier CPA Firms can Deliver Technology Services

By Scott H. Cytron, ABC(Accounting Software 411) With the continuous fallout associated with failed audits, scandals and mishaps at the world’s largest accounting firms, it’s now a proven fact that more and more clients are leaving large firms in hopes of finding green pastures elsewhere.USA Today ran a story in late September, “More Firms Flee Big 4 Accountants”, that spoke to this very topic.
Education & Careers

What’s YOUR Weakest Link? Building a Strong Job Search Chain

By, Deborah Walker - A chain is only as effective as its weakest link—and you don't know which link is weak until the chain is tested. If your job search is falling short, one of your job-search skills may be the weak link. By analyzing your chain of job search skills, you can build a stronger chain, one that can stand up to any test.There are three critical links in your job search chain. Consider each of them carefully to determine your weakest link, then work to strengthen that link.

The Human Trend: Bonuses for New Hires

By, The Herman Group, Roger Herman and Joyce GioiaEmployers are becoming more aggressive in their pursuit of highly talented employees. Recruiting efforts are being stepped up. Once again, bonuses are being paid to new employees, just for joining the company. Nothing new, you say? True. The idea of hiring bonuses, which emanated from the highly paid world of professional sports, has been around for a while. Companies have paid recruiting bonuses for years, mostly to fill higher-level positions or jobs requiring rare skills. Soon sign-on bonuses will again become more commonplace.
Community News

‘Wanted: A Managing Partner That Meets ALL of our Expectations!’

By: Sandra L. Wiley, Consultant - Visualize this scene in your conference room. You are at your annual planning summit. The agenda item that is before the partner group is, “Who will be our next Managing Partner?” Some are shifting uncomfortably in their seats and looking at the floor? Others are staring at their peers in the room, waiting for someone else to say something… anything! One thing you probably won’t see is a plethora of partners in your firm raising their hand, jumping out of their chair and resoundingly yelling “pick me”!
Community News

Nine Questions to Ask Yourself Before You Head To The Office Party

One thing you can count on during the holiday season is the obligatory office party. No matter what the size of the organization, there is always an effort to bring coworkers together for one more moment of merriment.
A&A

Nurturing Your Own 'Green Grass', Six Ways to Reinvest in Your Current Clients

Imagine for a moment that your business is lackluster and your third-quarter sales numbers are not on track. What's that? You say you don't have to imagine? You're not alone. We may be on the cusp of a recovery, but many companies haven't yet gotten the memo. And if you're like many of your financially frustrated counterparts, your first instinct is to round up your sales team and send them prospecting for new leads. After all, your current client list isn't keeping you well-fed, so it's time to seek out greener pastures. Right?
Community News

How to Get Employees To Walk the Talk

By Bruce L. Katcher, Ph.D. President, Discovery Surveys, Inc.It has become a cliché that "management must walk the talk" but so should employees.Our research shows that many employees don't understand how their work contributes to the organization's objectives. In short, they don't see the big picture. They don't recognize that no matter what their role in the organization, they can be contributing to its goals, vision, and brand.Is it no surprise that their behavior is, therefore, often inconsistent with the organization's vision?
Practice Management

Managing the Cost -- and Value -- of Failure

Why Successful Financial Managers Seek to Exploit Failure Rather Than Avoid It, by Bruce PounderIndividuals and organizations experience failure on a continual basis. Most failures are small, a few large, and a certain few catastrophic. Financial managers are quick to perceive the cost of failure, typically in the form of wasted money or lost opportunity. But many financial managers "fail" to recognize the significant value that is also present in nearly every failure.This article is about managing both the cost and value of failure in business today.
Tax

Fraud Detection is not Just by the Numbers

By Francis C. Brulenski, CPA, and Ricardo J. Zayas, CPA, CFE, CVA. Reprinted with permission from the Pennsylvania CPA Journal, a publication of the Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants." Audit professionals should, by now, be knowledgeable of Statement on Auditing Standards (SAS) No. 99, Consideration of Fraud in a Financial Statement Audit. Professional standards mainly focus on fraud detection procedures, but beyond this, the standards available for the auditor to consider once fraud has been detected are limited.
A&A

Navigating The Whitewater of Internal Politics

by Phyllis Weiss Haserot - Whether or not we like to acknowledge it, "politics" are a workplace fact of life for people at all levels and a possibility whenever more than one (or two) persons gather in a firm, team, group - whether temporarily or longer term.
Practice Management

How to Develop a Good Management Succession Plan

By the Change Management Group To implement a successful CEO succession plan some critical steps should be followed to ensure a smooth transition to new leadership:Involve the Board of Directors. The board must not abdicate its responsibility or leave the decision to the incumbent CEO.Develop specific criteria for the new CEO. Directors must set criteria that are more than simply conceptual in nature. The criteria must be enough to distinguish one candidate from another.
Community News

Survey Says Less Than Half of Companies Consider Outsourcing to be Cost Effective

Seventy-five percent of U.S. and European multinational companies now use outsourcing or shared services to support their financial functions and will continue to do so over the next 12-24 months, although less than half consider outsourcing to be cost effective, according to PricewaterhouseCoopers' Management Barometer Survey. Seventy-two percent of European multinational companies have outsourced financial functions over the past two years compared with 77 percent in the U.S. Additionally, 71 percent of European companies and 78 percent of U.S.
A&A

Two Steps to Improving Your Marketing Success

by Joel Sussman - Since the human brain seems to be able to focus on only one thought at a time, it's difficult to evaluate an advertising idea from the perspective of both a marketer and a customer. That's why it's necessary to use a two-step process when developing highly effective ads, sales letters, web pages, and e-mails. The first step involves creating a rough draft of your marketing message, while emphasizing the strong points and best attributes of your product or service.
Practice

Ten Employer-Employee Rules For Successfully Running a Small Business

Compliments of bizmove.com - You've just been in a serious car accident. You've got massive internal injuries and a broken jaw. You're going to be in the hospital at least a month. Your jaw is wired shut so you can't use the phone. Will your business run easily and well while you recover? Will your customers be served while you are gone? If you've just experienced heart failure over this prospect, the following list is for you. The information below, if put into practice, will reduce your stress, increase your business' productivity, and give you the vacation you so richly deserve.

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