Believe it or not, accountants, despite being the Superstars of Statutes, the Icons of Internal Revenue Code and the Crusaders of Credits and Debits, are just like anyone else. They wake up in the morning, put their pants on one leg at a time and sit in traffic during their morning commutes to do what many people wouldn’t want to do in a million years… but, hey, someone’s gotta do it!
Accountants are experts at what they do.
We all know what we do very well. Some of us are, in fact, expert number-crunchers, while others are experts at management or compliance. The great thing about being an accountant is having a vast array of knowledge with respect to looking at numbers and drawing conclusions. This information allows accountants to look at what, to many, may appear to be a page full of meaningless numbers or a book full of confusing statutes, and see a world of information with which to make decisions and recommendations. Of course, with great power comes great responsibility: they also know loopholes that may or may not be able to be truly taken advantage of.
Accountants have clients they love.
Regardless of your position, you have coworkers and clients that you love… and so do accountants! There are some fantastic clients that accountants get to work with, provide advice to and prepare work for. For accountants, nothing is more fulfilling than seeing their hard work benefit a client, whether it was helping to significantly reduce a client’s tax burden, helping one retire early with a great investment plan, or helping their organization find key areas to focus on to reach financial goals. Just like successes can be a huge motivator for what anyone does, successes like these are exactly why accountants love what they do.
They have deadlines… lots of ’em.
The average accountant deals with several dozen statutory deadlines per year. No, these aren’t petty deadlines set by some manager with a timeline where the worst-case scenario is a slap on the wrist. These are deadlines set by statute that, if missed, result in interest, penalties and possibly loss of license to practice or even incarceration. Talk about pressure! But good accountants take it in stride. Just like other professionals, they know their work is noble and necessary, and they take on the burden on behalf of their clients and employers to make sure the necessary tasks and filings are completed accurately and on time.
Accountants like to have fun, too.
After the clients are satisfied, the deadlines have been met and the work has been done, accountants, like most people, know how to get down and have a good time. Sure, the topics of conversation may be a little different, but their professional review of the tab at the end of the party will reveal that, in fact, they stayed under budget and had a great time (even Steve from Accounts Receivable, even though he only drinks Diet Coke with other people’s names on the cans!).
Accountants hold their own umbrellas, skip the premium gas and go for 87 (their cost-benefit analysis revealed 87 to be the most advantageous option) and maybe even choose Dunkin’ over Starbucks (the average $2-per-day savings could be invested in an IRA and result in an additional $92,000 in assets after 30 years at 8% tax-deferred growth). So, if you’re one of these benevolent bean counters, props to you. And if you’re not, but come across one, grab a selfie and remember, they’re just like you.