10 Ways Women Accountants Can Win at Work (and Home)
Women accountants face unique challenges since they are balancing their client load in the workplace and responsibilities at home. This can be a challenge for every woman accountant, whether married or single. Throw in a couple of kids, and the home responsibilities are multiplied exponentially. What boundaries can women create in order to excel in both places?
Successful women accountants have suggested these 10 ways to win at work and home:
- Know how many hours of work you can handle. If you are feeling overwhelmed (not just in tax season, but also throughout the year), evaluate your workload. Maybe, it is time to switch from full-time hours to part-time hours. Have young kids at home? You may need to work less. Need to care for an elderly relative? Adjust your hours for this season.
- Once you have decided on the amount of work you can handle, stick to it! Be ready to say no when the work asked of you exceeds what you have established with your employer.
- Produce excellent work so that your employer is willing to accept your request for the amount of hours you would like to work. Your employer has no incentive to negotiate hours with you if your work is careless and sloppy.
- Create a niche for yourself. What can you offer to do in the office so that you are indispensable? In what area can you make yourself the expert?
- Be flexible enough to try different work hours. Want to be home when your kids get off the bus? Ask your employer if he would be willing to let you work 7-3, instead of 9-5.
- Embrace new technology. Paperless and cloud-based accounting is especially important right now. If you feel uncomfortable learning new systems, be brave and dive right in. Be patient with yourself and see the learning process as an adventure.
- Work remotely. Have a sick kid who is home from school? If you are ambitious enough to become well versed in paperless systems, you can work from home. This enables you to be in two places at once, which is a win for both your workload and your responsibilities to your family.
- Create a family chore list. Don’t do all the housekeeping yourself! Even small children can put away clean silverware from the dishwasher. When everyone pitches in, the work goes quicker, freeing up your time to focus on relationship building. In fact, working together is an opportunity in itself for relationship building.
- Schedule your chores. Whether you have delegated the responsibilities to family members or you are single and on your own, plan ahead about when the chores will be done. If it’s not on the calendar, it will not get done!
- Be willing to accept help from family and friends when it is offered. Also, be willing to ask for help when you need it. This is especially important during tax season!
As a woman accountant, your work/home balance will look different than your co-worker’s does. And, your work/home balance will look different today than it will five years from now. Evaluate where you are today and implement just one or two of these ways to win. Through intentional and purposeful action, you can win at both work and home.