Are you busier than an ant at a picnic?

Posted: 11 Aug '23
Are you busier than an ant at a picnic?

Are you busier than an ant at a picnic?

Let’s set the scene for all you advisors. You’ve made it through EOFY and the one thing that kept you going was that it would soon be over. The workload would drop back to manageable levels and life would return to normal. But hold on, something else is going on in the world around us. I don’t know if it is the threat of a recession but, speaking from personal experience, our world is suddenly bursting with many new small business clients looking for help. The Appy Books phone has been ringing off the hook the last few weeks. And because the reason I chose this profession was to make a difference, it’s hard to say no. It seems I am not alone. On speaking to my peers, many are struggling to keep up the pace . The general feeling is that accounting and bookkeeping practices have found themselves caught in a whirlwind, a tempest of tasks that seems unrelenting. It's like juggling flaming torches while riding a unicycle – yes, that level of complexity!

So, what is the answer? Finding dedicated staff to help shoulder the load would be the perfect solution. But that in itself is a challenge. It’s like searching for the mythical unicorn – everyone's heard of it, but no one's seen it! The demand for skilled professionals in this field is soaring higher than a Buddy Franklin goal, yet the supply is struggling to keep pace. Practices are getting creative and hiring junior staff while still at university and training them or hiring experienced staff who are primary carers in part time roles. But the pressure is still building. As a result, many brilliant minds are waving the white flag, considering selling their practices or walking into the sunset of retirement cranking the pressure even higher.

What is the answer? Every challenge comes with a simple incorrect solution. In other words, I do not believe that there is one silver bullet. But maybe there are some strategies we can all lean on to help us through. Think of them as golden nuggets of wisdom that might not only keep your sanity intact but also help you to grab this chance to grow your practice.

1. Embrace the Digital Dawn: In a world that's rapidly digitizing, it's time to don your tech-savvy cape and embrace the wonders of automation. From cloud-based software to AI-powered tools, let technology be your trusty sidekick. This doesn't mean replacing your expertise – it means streamlining processes to free up your time for tasks that truly need your human fluffiness. Become a smart, slick, efficient practice. And if you are so busy that you don’t have the time to dedicate to the rollout of such systems, hire an expert! That’s what we advocate for our clients so make sure you walk the walk too. Choose someone recommended by peers like Clarity Street.

2. Network Like a Pro: Just as a balanced ledger needs both debits and credits, your professional life thrives on connections. Attend industry events, join online communities, and mingle with fellow financial enthusiasts. You never know – your next team member or mentor might be just a handshake away! And even if they aren’t, you’ll be sharing your pain with people who understand. That will lighten your load. There is some fab Facebook pages supporting advisors. Reach out if you need a suggestion of the one for you.

3. Prioritize Self-Care: Yes, you're a financial superhero, but even superheroes need a breather. Burnout is a villain we all face, so make sure to prioritize self-care. Whether it's taking a leisurely stroll, indulging in your favourite hobby, or simply unwinding with a good book, remember that you deserve moments of rest and rejuvenation. And don’t put off taking that holiday. Yes, the work will pile up, but all your clients will survive. I am especially speaking to all you sole practitioners. Find an industry buddy you trust who can support the basics while you are away. You will be more relaxed if you know you are covered and will come back raring to go again.

4. Seek Support: Don't be afraid to ask for help when the weight becomes too much to bear. Whether it's delegating tasks to colleagues or hiring temporary help during peak seasons, remember that teamwork makes the dream work. Also, be aware that all the professional bodies offer counselling services to their members if they are struggling with mental health issues. Don’t suffer in silence.

So, there you have it, my financial trailblazers – a snapshot of the challenges you're facing, coupled with the glimmers of hope that can light up your path. Remember, you're not alone in this journey. By embracing technology, nurturing connections, caring for yourself, and seeking support, you're not just surviving – you're thriving in a world that's as hungry for your expertise as a seagull outside a chip shop.

Looking forward to catching up with a whole bunch of you at Sydney Xerocon to share war stories. Stay ‘Appy! 

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