Whether you are part of a large, multi-service CPA firm or a solo practitioner, you likely feel the pressure during deadline seasons as they test our process efficiencies, team cohesiveness and talent.
As the 2018 tax filing season ramps up and we begin the steep ascent to April 17th, we focus on three areas we find most critical.
1. Setting Expectations Internally
Knowing what is expected of us is one of the most important pieces of the puzzle. How can we meet our goals if we don’t know what they are?
We hold annual internal trainings to practice talking through specific engagements, deliverables for each week, and clarifying goals and responsibilities for every team member. We even script questions that every team can ask to help “manage up” and “manage down”:
- How do you wish to be contacted outside of regular business hours? What time is too early or too late to contact you? Do you prefer a phone call, text message or email?
- How do you prefer to discuss review points of a document? A self-review first, or sit together to go through in detail together?
- What are your expectations in response to emails? How will you let me know the level of urgency?
- What are your expectations on the time it will take to get this assignment completed? What works for both parties?
- Do you have any outside commitments that I should know about that may affect/require scheduling flexibility, such as family or school?
About Dave McManus CPA
Dave McManus CPA is AAFCPAs’ co-managing partner, providing assurance, tax planning & compliance solutions to privately-held commercial companies. His client base consists of multinational manufacturing & distribution companies, real estate developers, auto dealerships, as well as high tech, bio tech, and renewable energy companies.