Years of education, training, and exams are required to become a professional such as a doctor, accountant, or engineer. However, it doesn’t take much to act professionally at work. People from any field can benefit significantly from being professional, and that includes accountants.
Whether you’re working for a firm, bank, or government, here are some blunders you should be aware of and avoid at all costs.
Sharing Information About Clients
Everybody knows it’s unprofessional to talk about your clients with other people who aren’t directly involved. It may be tempting to share a little bit of information about them to other people, especially your co-workers, but it is still a big no-no in practically every field.
Not only does this put into question data privacy, but it’s also simply unprofessional to gossip about your clients. You might not state point blank how much your client makes, but even a comment about how Christmas will be good for them this year is improper.
Confidentiality is a must. Unless it’s necessary for you to disclose information about your client, you should avoid doing so.
Not Researching On Company Culture
What may or may not be appropriate will depend on the environment you work in. Some organizations are more casual than others. You might find that they come into work in smart casual on some days. In other firms, they’re all about that suit and tie.
We understand that you can’t just Google search these things, but once you go in for that interview, try to observe company culture. That way, you at least have a grasp on how things work when you come in for your first day. It’s important to figure out what is and isn’t allowed in the firm.
Not Understanding Your Client
While we’re on the subject of culture, it’s also imperative to understand your client. Even if you’re doing taxes for them, it pays to do some research on who you’ll be working for or with.
If you’re providing services for a firm, read up on their history and the industry they’re in. You’ll find that there are differences between companies in the manufacturing industry one and in the service industry. Knowing the nature of their business will explain why their accounts are a certain amount, why they depend on debt for financing, and other aspects of how they run the company.
Not Being Assertive Enough
Those who have just started working may still be unsure of themselves. We hate to break it to you, but when it comes to your job, you’re going to need to overcome that and obtain a certain degree of assertiveness.
This assertiveness means that while you want to be able to compromise with clients, you can’t have them dictating everything when working with you. Learn your worth. You are a professional after all. Treat yourself like one.
Being assertive is different from aggression and dictating. Simply know when you’re being pushed around by your client.
Taking On Everything By Yourself
One thing many newbies get wrong is trying to take on too much responsibility on their own. The idea is that you have to ask when you don’t know. There is wisdom in admitting that you don’t know and that you need help. Everybody had to start where you are today.
You also have to know how much work you can handle. Don’t take on too many tasks in the hopes of seeming eager and pleasing people at work. That’ll all backfire if the quality of your work suffers. Learn when to say yes to challenges, and when to tell no if you know you can’t handle the workload.
Professionalism is more than just being able to get the job done. It’s also about upholding specific values to provide your clients with your best work. Quality is essential, and this will show not only through your output but also the way you conduct yourself.
Remember these common mistakes, and you’ll be a professional not just in title, but in every sense of the word.