Specializing in Helping CPAs Find their Dream Job in Public Accounting

3 Simple Steps to Success in your CPA Career Path

No matter what the economy looks like, everyone should always be looking to ensure that they stay on a successful career trajectory. Many stay laser-focused on creating their success while others allow circumstances and other factors to move them along. We’re betting if you’re reading this, you’re probably more like the former or, at least you want to be.

Either way, VALiNTRYfinancial can help you achieve your career goals.  However, there are a few steps you need to take first to make yourself highly marketable. Not sure what we’re talking about?

Meet Daniel

Daniel has been working for a Big 4 CPA firm for 12 years. He’s worked for this company since college when he received his master’s degree and passed the CPA test. Daniel has been happy at the firm. They treat him well. He has an expense account and worked his way all the way to Senior Auditor. His income is excellent and the benefits are great for him and his entire family. But Daniel wants more. He wants to become a partner. He knows the competition is fierce, and at best, it might be another 10 years or more before he would get the chance. It’s time Daniel strongly considers his options.

Daniel can leave and start his own firm, although he knows very little about ins and outs of running your own business. Or, he can go to another firm with a better shot at making partner. It would need to be smaller, but that’s okay. At least there is a clear path to growth.

Maybe you are in the same boat as Daniel. You’ve been stuck at the same firm for a while. It’s not a bad place to be, but you know you want more room to grow. While being able to make a move to another firm might sound enticing, there are few things you should know first. Let’s break down the things that Daniel did well.

Don’t appear “jumpy”

If you are looking to land a leadership position such as partner, a potential suitor firm looks for commitment. In Daniel’s case, he’s been there for more than ten years. This amount of time shows he’s in it for the long haul. Maybe you’ve been at two or three different firms and you’ve never stayed longer than four years. If that is the case, you probably won’t be a good candidate for a long-term move. However, sticking it out a few more years would be worth it in the long run.

Start working on skills for tomorrow, today

When making the jump to another firm, you always want to make the best representation of yourself on paper. That includes demonstrating those skills needed for the path you want to take from your current position. For example, for the past two years, Daniel has been working with another partner in learning business development skills. He knows that if he ever wants to make partner, he is going to need to bring in new business. This wasn’t something that came naturally to him, so he started learning, and within the past few years, he’s brought in three new accounts.

When a new firm sees his dedication, he will rise to the top of their shortlist of candidates to interview. This philosophy can be applied to any career path: You might not have all the skills you need at the moment, but you can begin to develop them for the next step right now.

Stay Public

One of the biggest mistakes candidates make is they make a move to a position with a private company, then years later, want to move back to a public firm. The reality is that public firms frown upon this because many candidates lose track of the tax changes that happen while they are in the corporate world. If you plan to move to a private company, it’s okay if that is where you want to stay. If not, we suggest you move back to a public firm ASAP and ideally within two years of being out of public practice.

What’s Next?

Now that you understand a little more about what it takes to seize control of your CPA career and make yourself highly marketable, you’re probably wondering what other efforts you could be making. A good next step would be to find and develop a relationship with a reputable recruiter that can help you find your dream job anywhere in the U.S. And that’s where we come in!

For more information on how the National Placement executives at VALiNTRYfinancial can assist you in your job search or simply give more specific guidance to your career path, check out our latest ebook on our unique recruiting methodology or contact us directly!

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