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Get Involved!

by Dave Miniken, CPA, CGMA, WSCPA Chair for 2016-2017 | Nov 29, 2016
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Many times each year, acquaintances—experienced CPAs—reach out to tell me they are looking for a new job and they ask if I can offer some helpful advice in finding a new position. The first question I usually ask is, “How active are you in the WSCPA?” Too often, I find they are not members. Or frequently I find they are members, but they haven’t attended any of the WSCPA’s member events, committee meetings, or chapter activities in a long time. So my initial inclination—to help connect them to fellow members who might know of opportunities—becomes much more difficult. I cringe each time I hear that one of my peers has not maintained a healthy network of professional contacts; once somebody has allowed their personal network to atrophy, that web of contacts won’t be there when they need it.

I often suggest to my colleagues that they create and enhance their professional network very much like they would chase after new business. A common rule-of-thumb many use when developing new business is to make sure prospects (1) know what you do for a living, (2) like you, and (3) trust you. While this doesn’t necessarily translate into new clients immediately, the model does provide a template that is often successful in the long run.

The benefits of getting involved in the WSCPA are so much more than merely providing a potential safety net in case your job disappears. Perhaps you work for a small firm or in a small department and would like the ability to bounce ideas off others in your profession. Perhaps your child is in college majoring in accounting and you’d like to introduce them to others in the profession. Perhaps you are responsible for recruiting college students and are looking for convenient ways to meet the go-getters who have been attending the Society’s events. Perhaps you are nearing retirement and are looking for assistance in transitioning your practice.

The WSCPA is the single best resource for you to keep your professional network alive. The Society has more than 8,000 members and it’s really easy to get involved. We have a number of committees looking for volunteers. We have conferences where you can meet others in a similar industry. We have 10 chapters spread throughout the state – each holding numerous events where you can meet your peers. We have membership events where you can connect with CPAs, educators, students, and many vendors who serve our members’ needs. We have golf tournaments and after-hours events where you can mingle with other CPAs. As you engage, you will find many opportunities to form new relationships that will benefit you in the long run, and your enhanced network is more likely to be there when you need it. I encourage you to take charge of your career by boosting your level of involvement with the WSCPA and growing your web of contacts!

Get involved!

Dave Miniken, CPA, CGMA, WSCPA Chair for 2016-2017

Dave Miniken is the WSCPA Chair for 2016-2017 and an audit shareholder at Sweeney Conrad in Bellevue. You can reach him at dave@sweeneyconrad.com.

This article originally appeared in the fall 2016 issue of  WashingtonCPA Magazine. Read more here.

To learn more about how you can become more engaged with the WSCPA, contact Member Services at (425) 644-4800 or (800) 272-8273 (toll-free in Washington) or send an email to memberservices@wscpa.org.

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The Washington Society of Certified Public Accountants is the only organization in the state of Washington dedicated to serving the professional needs of CPAs, educating consumers about CPAs and the services they provide, and encouraging students to study accounting and enter the profession.

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