Posted by Robert Half on 01 October 2015
Knowing how to succeed in accounting and finance requires keeping constantly up-to-date with industry trends, as finance partners within different sectors of businesses and translating numbers to actionable insight, so too must the skills required by professionals to excel in their roles.
So what attributes do you need to further develop your career? Here's how to succeed in accounting and finance:
There are millions of leadership books to read on exactly what leadership is and what it involves - and different people will have their own opinions on what constitutes a good leader. But ultimately, leaders are those who set the direction of a business and aim to bring their colleagues along on this vision. A strong leader must be able to inspire and motivate their workforce and use their skills to manage and assist their teams.
Strong technical and analytical skills
The number-crunching nature to succeed in accounting and finance jobs requires a technical and analytical brain. You must be able to process complex and ambiguous data on a day-by-day basis, applying your knowledge in a practical sense and a high level of accuracy so these insights can be delivered to the business. Analytical skills are also important, you should constantly update your knowledge of changing regulatory and reporting standards. Your ability to think incisively and make decisions based on your interpretation of information you are presented with will be critical for your future success.
Effective communication skills
If you want to succeed in accounting and finance, then good communication skills are a must in order to develop your career. They determine how you are perceived by others and whether you are able to relate to people on both an intellectual and emotional level. As the finance function moves out to interact with the business more frequently, to succeed in accounting and finance, professionals need to be able to translate technical information to business leaders in a way they will understand will add-value to their organisation.
A desire to be the best
While businesses want people who are willing and able to be team players, they also want professionals who will deliver high quality work and constantly be trying to improve processes. This means striving to deliver the best results and constantly trying to improve and innovate. So focus on being the best you can be, that way you set yourself up to be noticed when new opportunities come along.
A futuristic outlook
The accounting and finance industry is fast-moving, professionals must be able to adapt to the ever-changing operating environment, embracing new processes and market opportunities. A pragmatic outlook can see businesses through good and bad times and help them take appropriate measures to deal with both scenarios, laying down the groundwork for a strong and secure future.
If you are an ambitious person who wants to enjoy a long career and want to know how to succeed in accounting and finance, it's certainly worth incorporating these qualities into your professional development plan. If you have expert support to achieve pre-set targets and track your progress along the way, you can identify how well you are progressing and see if you are on course to achieve your ultimate ambition.