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Leading the new generation of accountants

This month we are looking at something a bit different. I have asked my daughter Jessica (Jess) Holton, a 34-year-old skilled graduate journalist working in digital media and fiercely independent, as only a father would know, to comment on the new generation of employees particularly in the accounting industry and how to manage them. Here are some of Jess’s thoughts;

As the latest generation of accountants enters the workforce, it’s important to update and revise policies and practices to ensure that you can lead effectively.

Looking toward careers that impact and serve a purpose, Gen Z is open to a career in accounting more so than ever. A study from the International Federation of Accountants found that 73% of those surveyed were interested in this field proving the younger generation sees its benefits.

Leading a work environment that promotes inclusivity and diversity should be at the forefront while using technology as a tool to lead this new partnership, a close second.

Leading Gen Z into the future of accounting firms will include some of these values:

Communication is key – creating a safe space to discuss feedback and work on tasks together. Approachability as a leader allows your staff to feel confident when discussing mental health and burnout.

Technology and Social Media – it’s great to utilise social media to train, educate and guide staff on practices and policies. Young accountants who are motivated by and well-versed in the latest accounting software are a strong advantage also.

Harness marketing strategies – using sites such as TikTok, Meta, Reddit etc. to advertise business and allowing the younger generation to advise on these mediums to grow your client base and brand.

Leading with well-being in mind – embrace this new generation of workers by using pragmatic goal setting alongside fostering your staff’s work/life balance which has become a strong value when choosing a career.

Inclusivity matters – ensuring your workers feel seen and included in your workplace is integral to healthy morale while being able to lead by example to demonstrate inclusivity in the workplace.

Diverse and aware – Gen Z values diversity and awareness in leadership with 88% of those studied by Tallo citing that gender pronouns should be clarified by potential employers.

By understanding the younger generation’s motivations, your role in leadership can greatly benefit both your staff and your accounting firm. As we welcome new accountants into this field, your leadership will be the guiding light as they work toward developing soft skills that are invaluable to every accountant of all generations.

To chat further with Jess about the younger accountants in your firm and how to best manage them please email me at: [email protected]m and I will put you in contact with her.