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3 Tips to Find Your Professional True North

CompassFinding your professional true north, a path you can be passionate about and one that will provide you with direction in the future, is attainable – when you have the right navigation. Whether it is honing your personal skill set, positioning your practice for growth or transforming your organization’s technology infrastructure, it is important that you be the navigator. There are endless possibilities to explore, pursue, master and achieve, and it is important you arrive exactly where you want to go.

Keep in mind that finding your way often means asking for directions and talking with others who have already arrived at your desired destination. They can tell you what is not on the map and the best roads to follow to enhance the quality of your journey. Here are three quick tips to find your professional true north:

  • Take a break. We are so wrapped up in our jobs and the day-to-day that we often forget to take time for ourselves. It is important to take a breather and reflect on our lives and what we want out of them. You do not need to take a weeklong vacation. Just a day on the weekend is enough. Go to the beach or your favorite museum and take some time for yourself.
  • Practice, practice, practice. It takes 10,000 hours to be considered a chess master. However, they do not stop once they have become a master. They keep practicing and learning. Develop a lifelong learning plan and face new standards and laws head on. Nothing is more satisfying than accomplishing a complex task, but you will only get there with practice.
  • Find your motivation. Artists and writers are infamous for having a muse, something or someone that inspires them. Find what motivates you and use that to spur your professional development. Personally, I find conferences to be a great motivator. The energy that is generated when you have like-minded people in one room is empowering. Moreover, nothing beats talking shop when both of you are passionate.

To begin the journey of finding your professional true north, program your GPS to the 2014 Practitioners Symposium and TECH+ Conference in Las Vegas. This three-day event, June 9 to 11, will help you understand current business and practice management topics, emerging technologies and dramatic shifts toward mobile and cloud-based solutions. Fantastic networking opportunities will reveal new lines of business or bolster your marketing efforts

This year’s conference provides several learning paths that provide a goal-based agenda, including how to:

  • Develop and Build a Practice in the Cloud
  • Avert Audit Risks in a Technologically Advanced Environment
  • Grow Your Practice: New Opportunities and Business Development
  • Plan for the Future: Succession Planning and Partner Accountability
  • Master the Advanced IT Level
  • Be the Emerging Partner
  • Sharpen Your Tax Advantage
  • Navigate Risk and Fraud

The conference provides a great opportunity to understand current trends in the accounting profession, create or enhance your networks and expand capabilities and expertise. In addition, be sure to catch my presentation on June 10, FRF for SMEs: The Maiden Voyage, as I lead a discussion of how a CPA firm can add the Financial Reporting Framework for Small- and Medium-Sized Entities to its practice and successful strategies for adding it to yours. I hope you will join me at the 2014 Practitioners Symposium and TECH+ Conference for a thorough perspective on how you can find your professional true north and help lead your organization into the future.

DeAnn Hill, CPA/PFS, CGMA, Owner, DeAnn Auman Hill CPA. DeAnn has her own practice in Baxter Springs, Kan. She also serves as the CFO for the State of Kansas and on the AICPA’s Board of Directors. DeAnn was named one of the most powerful women in accounting in 2012 by CPA Practice Advisor and serves as steering committee co-chair for the AICPA’s 2014 Practitioners Symposium and TECH+ Conference.

Compass image via Shutterstock

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