February 2016 AKCPA Newsletter

February 17, 2016


Josh McIntyre enjoying lunch time with his daughter during a break from work on a Saturday afternoon.

President's Message


February is the start of one of the busiest times of year for many CPAs. Most of my career has been spent working in tax, and with that background, my expectation was that beginning after the Super Bowl, I would probably be working every Saturday until April 15. I know not everyone is in tax, and not everyone has the first part of the year as their busy time. Also, not everyone has a job that is more than 40 hours a week.

One important thing that I have learned over the years is that you need to keep a balance in your life. During my first tax season as a fulltime employee I had two goals. To get more billable hours than anyone else in my office, and to pass the entire CPA exam on my first try. At that time the CPA exam was given only twice a year over a two-day period covering all four sections, which meant that I had to study for all of the sections at the same time. To get the most billable hours, I was working between 55 and 75 hours per week. I was also studying another 15 to 20 hours per week. Toward the end of March and in early April, I was starting to see the impact of two straight months of this pace. I was tired all the time, I was irritable and really had trouble focusing. My answer was that I needed to work harder and study more. By the time the exam came in early May, I was exhausted. I was very happy to take the exam, and felt pretty confident, but was not 100% sure that I had passed everything. It turned out that I only passed one section, with an 82. My other scores were a 72 and two 71s. At that time, you had to pass at least two parts to get credit for anything. So in the end I came close to meeting my goal, but ultimately had nothing to show for it.

Several years later, I adopted the attitude that I really did not want other people to get involved with the projects that I was working on. I thought that I could do all of the work faster and better than anyone else. In my experience, I found that if you get a reputation for working fast, and doing things well, more work will come your way. The truth is you can only do so much yourself. I had to get to the point where I was working an excessive number of hours, aided by huge amounts of caffeine, and my productivity was dwindling. I was not as fast or as sharp as I had once been, so my initial reaction was to work more, and try to work harder. I was familiar with the concept of diminishing marginal utility, but for some reason I could not see that it applied to me. Eventually, when I could not keep up, and I started to have health consequences from working too much, I started delegating work to other people, I started to take my health seriously, and I started to acknowledge that there were other callings in life than just doing my job.

I came to the realization that in my life I need to regularly engage in activities that will help keep a balance in my life physically, emotionally, and spiritually. After focusing on this balance, I found that I was able to achieve more in less time, and that I was happier and healthier. From time to time, I find myself getting off track, but I generally know where I need to be, and what I need to do to keep on track. As you experience busy times in your work, in school, or elsewhere, I encourage you to occasionally take a step back and assess where you are, what you are doing, and why you are doing it. Many times you will find the best way to get things done is to take a break to make sure you are taking care of everything else. 

Josh McIntyre


Nominations for Public Service & Distinguished Service Awards


 AKCPA Public Service Award Nomination Form



AKCPA Jay A. Ofsthun Distinguished Service Award Nomination Form






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