Leadership / Management | Training & CPE

How to deal with rapidly changing times

Dsc09479The very short answer is one word: Vision.

The longer answer comes from management guru Peter Drucker: "You cannot predict the future. You must create the future."

I am thinking about this because over the past three weeks, I have participated in several sessions using the strategic planing tool of "visioning" to imagine opportunities to help our members deal with the rapid changes in the CPA profession. The first session involved catching up with a friend of mine at an annual meeting I attend with several executives of state CPA societies.

Tom_and_christina_mThe first meeting was in Victoria, British Columbia, and the first day was a strategy session with Christina Merkley. Christina is a graphic strategic planning facilitator / executive coach and was the project manager for the CPA Vision Project when I was chairman of the AICPA Vision Team from 1999-2003. She worked for the Grove Consultants then and helped us develop new tools to help CPAs visualize change and learn new ways of thinking about the future. She now helps executives think about their personal visions through her business, Shift-it Coach.

Christina took us through an exercise to envision the opportunities for the state CPA society of the future. As always, she took us to a whole new level that we could not have reached without her expertise. Thanks, Christina! It was great seeing you in your home, beautiful Victoria, British Columbia.

Picture_or_video_012 The next session occurred at Interchange, a joint conference with the AICPA and the CPASEA  (State Executives Association) held in New Orleans, where I facilitated a session on the CPA firm of the future. We came up with the top five issues facing firms and the top five actions we could do as state CPA associations to help our members.

Other sessions dealt with the state CPA society of the future; members in business, industry and government; and older- and younger-generation plans.

The point is that in these rapidly changing times, we all should work to "create" new futures that serve our customers (or members) better and to provide growth and opportunity for our people. Visioning and strategic planning are the tools to help you accomplish that. At our Business Learning Institute, we have a team of graphic strategic facilitators to help companies and firms think about their future. We are also beginning our own strategic planning process here at the MACPA to create our future and prepare for the changes that lie ahead.

How do you deal with these rapidly changing times?