Tax season is the busiest time of the year for CPAs and other tax professionals. With the amount of work that needs to be done in these few months, it can be hard to buckle down and find the drive and determination to keep up the with steady pace of constant work. However, if you and your practice want to be successful and continue having work year after year during this all-important season, you’ve got to learn how to stay focused during this marathon. So to help you get through this part of the year, here are three tips for staying organized during this year’s tax season.
Do The Dreaded Tasks First
One of the best things you can do for your daily organization and schedule is to do the tasks you dread the most at the very beginning of the day. Mark Twain called this eating your live frog. Twain shared that if you know you have to eat a live frog in the morning, once you’ve done it, you know everything that comes after that during the day won’t be so bad. Gina Trapani, a contributor to FastCompany.com, writes that by putting this task as your highest priority and taking care of it before you have time to put it off, you’ll be much more productive during the rest of your day and will be able to better focus on your other tasks.
Work burnout is a real thing. And while you might think you will be able to just muscle through it, many people find that this mental fortitude simply isn’t enough when you’re working 18 hour days for months on end. One thing that can work wonders for avoiding the burnout of tax season, according to Sheon Ladson Wilson, a contributor to AICPA.org, is to make time for yourself to recharge. Even if this means taking off an hour early one day and working an hour later the following day, at least you will have had that one hour to shut off your brain, reconnect with yourself and your family, and take a break from the unending work you’ve been doing during this ever-busy season.
Keep Communication Realistic
When you’re completing taxes on behalf of someone, it’s only natural for them to want to be kept aware of your progress. However, constantly having to check in with clients can take even more time out of your already busy day. To combat this, Edward Mendlowitz, a contributor to JournalOfAccountancy.com, suggests creating a very strict and realistic communication schedule. Let the client know when they need to have all their information to you, like loan information and tax forms, and then give them a certain number of days to wait to expect communication from you regarding the status of their return. By preparing these procedures as standard policy, it will save you a lot of time on the phone or writing emails to concerned clients.
Maintaining efficiency is vital during this busy work time. Use the tips mentioned above to ensure you’re able to get all the work done that you have set before you during this tax season.