The Plan Behind Meeting With an Employee Who Is Performing at Less Than Ideal Standards

August 16th, 2019

Being the boss isn’t easy — especially when you have an employee who isn’t pulling their weight. You’re hoping to correct the issue, so you don’t have to launch a search to hire accountants in Spokane right now, but you’re not quite sure what to do.

A meeting to discuss their performance is on the calendar. You want to let them know you’re serious, without having to walk away feeling like a mean boss. Here’s some advice to help you have a productive meeting that produces positive changes.

5 Tips to Deal With an Underperforming Employee

Identify Specific Behaviors

Get on the same page by explaining exactly what the employee is doing wrong. Leaving any room for interpretation won’t work, because they aren’t a mind-reader. You might think the areas they’ve been slacking in are obvious, but they might not feel the same way. Putting it all out on the table is the only way to move forward.

Give Them the Floor

A conversation about poor performance should be a two-way street. There’s a reason the person isn’t meeting your standards, so finding out what that is — i.e., inadequate training, being overworked, or problems at home — can allow you to easily nip it in the bud. Having a voice in the matter will make the person feel heard, so they’re less likely to be defensive.

Don’t Make it Personal

The issue you have with the employee is their poor performance — not them as a person. Make this clear by focusing on the behaviors you’d like to see changed, instead of assassinating their character. For example, instead of calling them lazy, explain that the rest of the team is frustrated that they have to do extra work because they’re not pulling their weight.

Create a Clear Action Plan

You can’t expect the employee to change on their own. Help them reach the standards you desire by setting S.M.A.R.T. — specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, time-bound — goals. This will leave no room for interpretation, allowing them to know exactly what they need to do to improve their performance.

Set Consequences

Let the employee know what will happen if they fail to achieve the S.M.A.R.T. goals you’ve set for them. Knowing there will be consequences for falling short of these objectives should inspire them to clean their act up and really get to work.

Need help finding hardworking accounting or finance talent?

Provisional Accounting is here to guide your search. Contact us today to get started!

Three Stretches Every Accountant Should Do Throughout the Day to Stay Relaxed and Fit

August 10th, 2019

Throughout your career, you’ve had several Spokane accounting jobs. They’ve all been different in their own rights, with one common denominator — muscle stiffness.

It might seem like sitting at a desk all day is easy on the body, but there’s more to it than meets the eye. Most offices don’t have an ideal ergonomic setup, so it’s important to stretch your muscles throughout the day.

Chances are, you can’t stop and take a midday yoga class, but thankfully, there are plenty of quick and easy stretching moves that can be done at your desk. Here are three stretches you can do throughout the day to help you stay relaxed and fit.

1. Triceps Stretch

Sitting at your desk typing all day can leave your arms feeling tense. Combat this by engaging in triceps stretches throughout the day.

Raise one arm and bend it in a manner that positions your hand reaching toward the opposite side. Use your other hand to pull your elbow toward your head. Hold this stretch for a few seconds, then repeat it on the other side.

2. Seated Spinal Rotation

Sitting in a desk chair all day can take a toll on your body. Ease the stiffness by taking regular breaks for a seated spinal rotation.

Remain in your desk chair and cross your arms over your chest. Grip your shoulders and turn your upper body at the waist from left to right, going as far as you can comfortably do so. When completed properly, you should feel tension throughout your lower back, as your muscles stretch.

3. Hand Air Circles

Spending the bulk of your day typing is part of the job, but it can leave your hands feeling cramped. Minimize the pain by stopping frequently to do air circles with your hands.

Stretch both hands out in front of you and clench your fists. Make circles in the air in one direction first, then the other. When finished, shake your hands out.

Ready to find a fulfilling new accounting or finance job? Provisional Accounting wants to help you land your perfect fit! Contact us today to connect with top local employers looking to fill temporary/contract, contract-to-hire, and direct-hire positions with talent like you.

How to Plan for Your Interview to Avoid That Nervous, Anxious Feeling

July 30th, 2019

Landing an interview for a job you really want can feel simultaneously exhilarating and terrifying. You’re thrilled you were selected to interview for the position and desperately want to impress the hiring manager, but you became a nervous wreck the second you received the invitation.

There’s a lot of talented professionals looking to advance their accounting careers in Spokane, and you’re one of them. Here’s some advice to help ease your anxiety, so you’re able to show the interviewer you’re the best person for the job.

Four Tips to Avoid Interview Anxiety

Spend Plenty of Time Preparing

It’s hard to be nervous when you know you’re truly ready for the interview. Achieve this by fully researching the company — i.e., carefully reviewing its website, blog, and social media presence — the interviewer, and the job itself. Devise clever answers to common interview questions and ask someone you trust to rehearse them with you. Since the tables will turn at some point in the interview, write a list of thoughtful questions to ask the hiring manger in case you draw a blank on the big day.

Don’t Leave Anything Until the Last Minute

A last-minute catastrophe will likely send your anxiety through the roof, so take control of issues that are 100% avoidable. For example, instead of assuming your interview attire is clean and fits, try it on several days in advance. Seemingly little things, such as taking a practice drive to the company to gauge traffic around the time of your interview and checking out the parking situation — even if you’re familiar with the area — can make a world of difference.  

Make Time for a Healthy Stress-Relieving Activity

Combat stress on the day of your interview by making time for a healthy activity that will calm your nerves. This is different for everyone but might include meditation, exercise, or spending time with loved ones. After engaging in this pastime, you’ll feel relaxed, energized, and ready to take on anything that comes your way.

Practice Positive Thinking

When you’re nervous, it’s easy for your mind to fill with negative thoughts, but that won’t get you hired. Combat your anxiety by visualizing yourself in the job. If you can see it, you can believe it. Going into the interview with confidence will help you put your best self forward, and other candidates will have a very hard time competing with that.

Searching for a new accounting job in Spokane or Seattle? Provisional Accounting can help you find the right temporary/contract, contract-to-hire, or direct-hire position for your skills and interests. Contact us today to get started!

Working With a Few Remote Employees? Here’s the Key to Making Them Fit in With the Rest of Your Office

July 27th, 2019

For the first time, you’re managing a few remote employees. Considering the surging popularity of work from home jobs, the next time you’re hiring accountants in Spokane, it’s probably not a stretch to think you might add even more remote positions to your team.

The fact that technology has advanced to this point is pretty amazing. Of course, it also brings new challenges, including helping remote workers fit in with everyone else. The key to success is making sure they don’t feel isolated. Here’s how to do it.

Three Ways to Help Remote Employees Feel Like Part of the Team

Place a Heavy Emphasis on Teamwork

Employees don’t have to be in the same office, state, or even time zone to work together. Take advantage of this by assigning remote staffers to work on teams or in larger groups when possible. This will help them build relationships and really get to know one another. Despite being physically apart from the others, they’ll feel a sense of comradery when they’re able to complete projects with their peers, instead of always having to work independently.

Make Communication a Top Priority

When employees are scattered across different locations, messages tend to get lost in translation. This can lead to miscommunications that cause conflict and hurt feelings. Avoid this by keeping remote employees in constant contact with the team. For example, you might consider a policy that requires them to video call into all meetings and stay signed in to a common chat application — i.e., Slack — throughout the workday. The face-to-face video calls can help keep everyone on the same page, while the more informal chats will allow them to enjoy standard office banter.

Treat Them Like Everyone Else

When possible, make remote employees feel included by adhering to the same policies and giving them the same or equal incentives as everyone else. For example, if you offer free coffee in the breakroom, sign them up for a subscription service where the same brand of ground coffee is delivered in bulk to their doorstep on a monthly basis. Sometimes it’s the little things that make people feel valued and appreciated.

Searching for talented accounting or finance professionals to join your team? Provisional Accounting is here to help you find the best fit. Contact us today to discuss a partnership!

Navigating Job Search Rejection: How to React When a Potential Employer Turns You Down

July 25th, 2019

Searching for Spokane accounting job opportunities can be a process filled with ups and downs. It’s exciting to score an interview for a job you’re really interested in, but discouraging when you’re not hired.

When you receive a rejection call or email, your first instinct might not be the most professional reaction, so think before you speak. Here are a few guidelines to help you handle the situation the right way.

Four Tips to Handle Job Search Rejection

Be Polite

Receiving disappointing news can make it hard to mind your manners, but you don’t have a choice. Being anything but gracious about the company’s decision is unprofessional, so force yourself to take the high road. Thank the hiring manager for the opportunity and for keeping you in the loop on their decision. Let them know you’d like to be considered for any future openings on the team.

Find Out When Went Wrong

Some of the best interview advice comes from jobs you didn’t get. Ask the hiring manager if they would be willing to share any feedback from your interview. Any constructive criticism you can get will help you learn and grow for your next interview. This is a great way to turn a disappointing situation into something incredibly useful.

Don’t Overanalyze

Reflecting on what you did well and what you could’ve done better throughout the job interview process is helpful to an extent, but don’t allow it to consume you. Obsessing over the situation won’t change the outcome so, take your lessons learned and move on. Wallowing won’t help you find a new job any faster.

Focus on the Positive

Every job interview you go on is an opportunity to refine your technique. This means you’ll be even more polished the next time around. Clearly, this job wasn’t right for you anyway, which means your ideal fit is still out there, waiting for you to find it. Get excited, because you have a very bright future on the horizon.

Need a little help landing your dream job? Provisional Accounting is here to assist every step of the way. Contact us today to find a temporary/contract, contract-to-hire, or direct-hire opportunity with a top Spokane or Seattle employer.

Four Low-Cost Activities to Improve Team Morale This Summer

July 23rd, 2019

Hiring accountants in Spokane is a big job, and you need the support of your team. However, summer is the most relaxed season of the year, which can make coming into the office the last thing employees want to do.

Since people have visions of sunshine and pool days dancing through their heads, making work extra fun is the best way to increase morale. Here are four budget-friendly activities to engage and inspire your staff this summer.

Company Picnic

Nothing celebrates summer better than a barbecue. Organize a family-friendly gathering on a weekend at a local park, the boss’s house, or even on the lawn of your office building. Save money by making the menu potluck or ordering pizza. Make the picnic fun for everyone by planning a variety of games — i.e., potato sack races, horseshoe, volleyball, cornhole, limbo — for people of all ages. This is a great way for employees to bond on a personal level, in a relaxed setting.

Volunteer Together

Boost employees’ spirits by giving back to a great cause. Take a vote to choose a local charity to volunteer for, then close the office for the day — or a few hours, if that’s all you can spare — and enjoy helping others as a team. Doing something so selfless together will make employees feel great and bring them closer together. They’ll also gain a greater appreciation for you as their employer because working for a company that cares is something really special.

Themed Day(s)

Just about everyone enjoys the opportunity to wear a fun costume, so take advantage of this. Plan a themed day — or make it a series — and encourage employees to come to work dressed to impress. Hang decorations around the office, play music that aligns with the occasion — at least at lunchtime — and give an award to the best dressed. This is a fun way to add some pizazz to an otherwise standard workday.

Ice Cream Social

Considering it’s the unofficial food of summer, there’s no better time to treat employees to ice cream. Buy several different flavors and toppings, and serve it up during the afternoon hours. This fun and a delicious break will make people feel valued while giving them some downtime to enjoy non-work conversation with their colleagues.

If you need to hire new accounting or finance talent for your Spokane or Seattle team, Provisional Accounting wants to help. We take pride in connecting leading local employers like you with top talent, so get in touch today to learn more!

How the Best Managers Lead Instead of Boss Their Employees

June 28th, 2019

Being the boss means you’re in charge, but don’t let your ego get the best of you. If you want to hire accountants in Spokane — and retain them — you have to treat your team with respect.

The most effective managers realize a power trip will get them nowhere. Instead, they treat employees as equals and do everything they can to help them learn and grow. Here’s a few tips to help you thrive in your leadership role.

5 Ways to Lead Your Team to Success

Be a Positive Role Model

You can’t expect employees to follow the rules if you don’t do so yourself. Lead by example to earn your team’s respect. For instance, if you require everyone to be in the office by 8:30am, make sure you’re on time as well.

Don’t Micromanage

Serving as the boss is a big job, so you might be hesitant to loosen the reins. However, operating on a “my way or the highway” basis doesn’t help anyone. You hired seriously talented people, so allow them to do their jobs the best way they see fit. This will make them happier and more effective, while leaving you more time to focus on your own workload.

Listen to Their Ideas

Your employees are smart people, so encourage them to speak up. Challenge them to come up with innovative ways to improve processes, new project ideas, and ways to better serve clients. Give each person the respect they deserve by listening to each idea and making people feel valued for sharing their thoughts. Even if you don’t implement the initiative, they’ll respect the fact that you gave it consideration.

Keep Them in the Loop

Bad managers only provide selective information to their teams, which of course isn’t effective. No one likes to be left in the dark, so keep employees informed on all information impacting both the team and the company as a whole. Some news is more fun to share than others, but always being transparent with your team will help you earn their trust.

Own Your Mistakes

You’re in charge of a team of people, but you’re only human. No one expects you to be perfect, so when you slip up, admit your error(s) and move on. Admitting to your errors in judgments takes a strong person, and your employees will admire you for it.

As an added bonus, this will also inspire your team to take risks. If they feel like it’s okay to fail, they’ll be more confident taking on new initiatives, because they know you have their back.

If you’re ready to hire new accounting or finance talent, Provisional Accounting is here to assist. We’ll help you find the best person for the job every time, so get in touch today to discuss your needs!

The Key to Showing Your Boss You’re Ready to Take on More Responsibility in the Office

June 21st, 2019

You really enjoy your job, but it’s no longer a challenge. You’re ready to take on more responsibility, and you’re hoping to do this at your current company — instead of having to start searching for new Spokane accounting jobs.

Now you just have to convince your boss you’re ready to take on a heftier workload. Making yourself indispensable is the key to success. Here’s how to do it.

4 Ways to Prove You’re Ready for More Responsibility

Exceed Expectations

Doing the bare minimum to get by might demonstrate your ability to do your job, but it won’t convince your boss to put more tasks on your plate. To get to the next level, make a habit of going the extra mile. Add extra details into assignments, turn work in early, anticipate issues that could arise, and do anything you can to make your boss look good.

Solve Problems

Anyone can run to their boss with a problem, but truly valuable employees find a solution. Make it clear you can handle more than you’re currently doing by putting your problem-solving skills on display. Whether the issue is confined to a task you’re assigned to or something faced by the entire team, roll up your sleeves and get to work on it. Don’t stop until the matter is resolved.

Lend a Helping Hand

Since you’ve mastered your own job duties, you have plenty of time to spare. Instead of browsing the Internet or playing solitaire, offer to assist a colleague who is overworked or struggling with an assignment. Acts of kindness have a way of getting back to management, and this one really highlights your leadership skills.

Be Easy to Manage

Your boss won’t be eager to give you more responsibility if you constantly cause them headaches — no matter how talented you are. Make yourself a delightful employee by having a positive attitude, getting along with everyone, and following the rules. When your manager asks you to complete a task, do it without complaining or asking why.

Ready to start the next chapter of your accounting or finance career? Provisional Accounting wants to help you find the right temporary/contract, contract-to-hire, or direct-hire opportunity in Spokane or Seattle. Contact us today to learn more!

5 Reasons to Take Organized and Structured Breaks During Your Workday

June 14th, 2019

If you’re planning on hiring accountants in Spokane, now is also a great time to also start thinking about ways to team boost productivity and morale. Happy employees work harder and enjoy longer tenures with their employers, so this is an investment definitely worth making.

Your team spends at least 40 hours per week at the office, so if the current space is a bit drab or otherwise uninviting, it’s no wonder they’re feeling a bit lethargic. Here’s a few relatively easy ways to make changes for the better.

4 Subtle Ways to Increase Morale and Productivity

Encourage Workstation Makeovers

Your employees spend most of the day at their desks, so their own little part of the building should be place that makes them feel inspired. However, if they’re surrounded by fluorescent lighting and drab cubicle walls, it’s easy to understand why morale isn’t so high.

Change this by encouraging them to upgrade their work areas. If possible, give each person a small budget to purchase items that reflect their personal style — i.e., a lamp, rug, art work, plant. Make it extra fun by turning the initiative into a contest.

Clean the Clutter

If your office is in a state of disarray, it’s time to give it a cleanup. Boxes lining the hallways and papers strewn everywhere are distracting and can make it difficult to find anything. Getting rid of these items or putting them in storage will create a more professional vibe. Being more organized will also promote efficiency, as it will make it much easier to find things.

Make Alternative Workspaces

Being stuck in the same spot all day can cause employees to become restless. Convert unused spaces around the office into areas where people can bring their laptops and work. A simple change of scenery can help them get inspired and feel like they’re having a bit of an adventure.

Create a Relaxation Area

Your employees are only human. No matter how much they enjoy their jobs, they can only work nonstop for so long, before they need a break. Give them a great place to recharge by transforming a vacant corner, storage closet, or office into a relaxation area. Take a vote to find out what the team would like from the space — i.e., a fun area to play games or a relaxing place of Zen — and decorate it accordingly.

 

Need to hire new accounting or finance talent? Provisional Accounting is here to guide your search. Contact us today to find the best fit for your Spokane or Seattle company every time!

 

 

5 Reasons to Take Organized and Structured Breaks During Your Workday

June 7th, 2019

If taking breaks is frowned upon by your current employer, it might be time to search for new  accounting jobs in Spokane. Anything but lazy, working several organized and structured breaks into your day offers several mental and physical health benefits.

Planning regular breaks in advance allows you to recharge faster and choose activities that are most conducive to your success. Here’s a look at what you have to gain by incorporating a few into your day.

5 Reasons to Take Breaks at Work

Increase Productivity

No matter how passionate you are about your work, you can only go nonstop for so long before your energy levels decline. Breaks refresh your mind, allowing you to return to work feeling recharged and ready to tackle any obstacle in your path.

Reduce Stress

Sitting at your desk all day in front of a mountain of work or a particularly challenging project can easily make you feel anxious. Stepping away for lunch or even a quick walk around the block allows you to relax and put things in prospective. By the time you get back to your desk, you’ll enjoy a renewed sense of calm that will help you feel like brand new person.

Improve Concentration

It’s hard to accomplish anything when you’re mind is too exhausted to focus. Trying to make yourself work uninterrupted all day is noble, but you won’t succeed. Eventually, you’ll burnout and likely lose your ability to concentrate for the rest of the day. Taking structured breaks gives your brain a much-needed time out, so you can return to the task at hand clear-headed.

Boost Creativity

Coming up with inventive ideas can be challenging enough when you’re feeling bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, but good luck with that if your brain is fried. Working a few organized breaks into your day can help you feel more inspired, because you’re never at the point where you’re running on empty.

Bond With Your Peers

Sitting at your desk all day with your head down will make you feel isolated from your co-workers. Chances are, they’re taking plenty of breaks, and many include chatting at the watercooler, group lunches, and quick walks to the local coffee shop together. During this time, they’re able to form relationships that make working together easier and more fun. Don’t be the odd one out, because you won’t allow yourself a break.

Ready to find a fulfilling new accounting job? Provisional Accounting is here to guide your search for the right temporary/contract, contract-to-hire, or direct-hire position in Spokane or Seattle. Contact us today to learn more!