Top 7 issues facing young professionals
One of the best parts of my job is helping to "connect" all of our members to the CPA profession. We have been working with our New / Young Professionals Network for the past seven years to help grow young leaders and build a bridge to connect this group to the CPA profession.
I sat down with our NYPN leadership group recently, and I am excited about their enthusiasm and commitment to the MACPA and the CPA profession. We do have a bright future ahead of us if we listen to what they are telling us.
The good news is that we have made a lot of progress. The bad news is that there is still a lot of work to do. Here are their most recent list of the top seven issues they face:
- Bridging the "gap" between college and the "real world."
- Under-developed skill sets (see more below).
- Work-life balance.
- Limited networking opportunities.
- Intimidation from bosses (partners and CFOs).
- CPA exam (time, support, information).
- Lack of a voice within the profession.
And here are the top five skills they are asking for under No. 2 above:
- Communication skills (add conflict management to this also).
- Leadership skills (including supervision and management).
- Technical skills.
- Analytical skills.
- Time management/organization skills.
They planned out an entire year and are addressing the "Three Cs of Leadership Development":
- Context: Understanding the business and competitive context of the profession.
- Competency: Obtaining the necessary skills and abilities to succeed.
- Citizenship: Involvement in the community and the CPA profession.
In addition to their very successful networking events, they are developing "roadshows" we can take to CPA firms and companies to show the value of NYPN and MACPA membership to young professionals, a meeting with the CPA firm managing partners group, a special Maryland corporate tax update on Oct. 3, a NYPN Issues Update / Let's Talk Session on Nov. 11, the wildly successful holiday party on Dec. 4, and CPA Day in Annapolis on Jan. 28, 2009). Check out the NYPN section of our Web site for details and updates .
They also have a strong track record of leaders coming from their ranks. Check out just a few of them: Past MACPA Chair Tami Bensky, MACPA board member Jeff Lawson, and candidate member Chris Downey of our Accounting Career and Education Task Force.