Are you future ready? This year we had a special panel of partners and leaders talking about ways for CPAs to be future ready at the closing session on Friday at the Beach Retreat.
What is Future Ready?
Future ready means to be aware, predictive and adaptive of emerging trends and issues. Using our hard trends research around government regulations, demographics and technology, our four panelists brought some insights (and resources) around the issues of tackling today’s ‘overwhelmed and disengaged workforce’ in addition to a primer on the disruptive technology of Blockchain.
We started with an overview of the major trends facing the accounting profession and some polling of the audience. Ed Kless of Sage Software and I then did a deep dive into Blockchain and accounting. Bottomline: It should be on your radar as one of those ‘weak signals of disruptive change.’
Mike Sabbatis, COO of XCM then covered how to work with a workforce that is ‘overwhelmed and disengaged’. The hard trends of exponential technologies, changing demographics are creating a hyper competitive environment where organizational priorities and even strategies are changing by the minute. This means your workforce probably has no idea of what the real strategy is or worse, what their roles and responsibilities are. This results in a tremendous loss of productivity and a disengaged workforce operating without discretionary effort. Mike and XCM aim to change that by enabling four key areas to manage all of the major activities in today’s businesses. XCM solutions is a productivity enablement platform (aka workflow) that enables four core functions to get your work and workforce productive – 1) Visibility; 2) Control; 3) Flexibility; 4) Accountability.
Next up was Richard Silberstein, CEO of the SIG (Silberstein Insurance Group), one of our newest strategic partners talked about the changing landscape of employee benefits and how it ultimately comes down to your culture and how you can think beyond the benefits to increase retention and engagement with a focus on wellbeing, employee experiences, and connections. We are kicking off this relationship with a free CFO / HR Roundtable – The Future Ready Firm Wellbeing Program on July 20, 2017 in Baltimore 8:00 am – 10:00 am.
Check out the Mid-Atlantic Benefits Benchmarking Survey for all employers 50 and up to get a free comprehensive report rating your benefits against the region covering benefit plans, employee contribution, wellness, cost control initiatives and impacts of the ACA and Healthcare Reform.
Look for a lot more education and resources from Richard and his team,
We wrapped up with Lexy Kessler, partner in charge of Government Contract Services Group at Aronson, LLC. Lexy is also a member of the AICPA Council and the AICPA PCPS Committee. Lexy gave an awesome lightning round about the future ready CPA firm using the latest research and resources from the PCPS Firm in Motion Toolkit. Lexy talked about the toolkit that highlights key areas for firms to consider in Talent, Culture and Clients.
She closed with four strategies to power forward and become a high-performing organization of the future:
- Stay on top of new and emerging trends;
- Embrace generational differences;
- Look for new and better ways to improve processes and serve client needs and expectations;
- Work together to revolutionize the way we do business to become a ‘next gen’ firm of the future.
I found it interesting that three of four panelists talked about talent and culture and how to engage the workforce to increase productivity and that elusive ‘discretionary effort’ we all desperately need in this exponentially changing world.
More Beach Retreat sponsors included:
- AICPA Member Insurance Programs
- The Business Learning Institute
- Cordia Partners & Resources
- Kelly Payroll
- M&T Bank
- Receipt Bank
- Frost and Associates
- Phillips Office Solutions
It was a record setting Beach Retreat and our thanks to all of our instructors, sponsors and our members who made it such a great experience. Save the date for next year on June 27th – 29th, 2017.