Academic journal article Journal of Accountancy

Watch Your Attitude

Academic journal article Journal of Accountancy

Watch Your Attitude

Article excerpt

Robert Half, CPA, founder of Robert Half International, Inc., and author of six books, discusses the benefits of thinking positively.

The Journal welcomes readers' questions on employment concerns, which should be sent to Career Clinic, Journal of Accountancy, Harborside Financial Center, 201 Plaza III, Jersey City, New Jersey 07311-3881.

I once asked legendary businessman Malcolm Forbes which quality was most lacking in accountants who never achieved success. He quickly replied, "Imagination. Accountants are too cost-conscious to let their imaginations go. Too often, they fail to recognize--or even care about--the signicance of the numbers."

At the same time, he recognized the problems CPAs face. "Accounting is such a tough discipline," Forbes said, "that the characteristics required to do the basic work correctly often smother the other ingredients of success."

These insights apply to everyone seeking career success in any business or profession. When I aksed him to identify the most important attribute for anyone looking to succeed, he responded, "If you don't like what you're doing, you'll never be successful. I don't think people do something really well unless they truly enjoy what they do."

Having helped many accountants achieve career success and fulfillment over the years, I'm aware of the crucial role a positive attitude plays. Achievers can keep spirits up when under pressure and when suffering frustration, rejection or even outright failure. Many successful people I know have been fired from at least one job and can point to times in their careers when nothing seemed to go right. There's little surprise, then, that according to surveys, a large number of Americans who became millionaires by age 35 also experienced bankruptcy before discovering the right path. …

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