Shortly after figuring out my housing situation, things started to ramp up for the beast that is called Busy Season. Given how smooth the audit was going thus far, I thought we would be fine.
So let me tell you the never ending problem with Big 4 Accounting (from my point of view): Unrealistic Deadlines.
Yup. Well that, and improper compensation, unrealistic hours, and under-staffing issues. List goes on. However, because of these items, we obviously worked late trying to meet the deadline. And time and time again, we never actually met the deadline. We always somehow finessed another week or two. Those billable hours we had. I can’t imagine that we ever were on budget. No No No. And then we wondered why clients hated us.
Per Google, some have stated that the average attention span lasts about 8 seconds. And I believe it because some of you may not even reach this far down in the blog. Thank you to those that do. But the real question here is, how does a business expect individuals to work 8 hours day and be productive the entire time?
Scratch that. This was Big 4. How does a corporation expect individuals to work anywhere from 8 to 18 hours a day and be productive? Let’s run through a typical week, shall we?
I remember my late nights all too well. Depending on the team, it was either a miserable experience, or a funny one. Most of my team member’s brains shut off the moment we ordered dinner. So just think, a team of six people start deciding dinner at 6pm (this could take up to an hour) – for the hopes that the food would arrive around 7. Next two hours are spent eating, chatting, and scrolling through pages of #howshouldweaccountforme. After that, another hour is spent on recuperating from the food coma.
Pulling out the calculator. So that’s about 4 hours. This means it is probably 10PM at this point. Yet, it’s not time to go home. Someone, please tell me how productive the next couple of hours will be?
Next thing you know. It’s 6AM and it’s time to get ready for the new day.
Rinse. Wash. Repeat.
Fast Forward to the end of the week. It’s Thursday. Your Manager or Senior Manager is treating the team to drinks for all the hard work. Well, that should make up for it. And it does. Until midnight hits and your knee deep in the game.
One Fireball, Two Fireball, Three Fireball. TURNT.
Now, obviously, everyone will be late to work Friday. Friday is pretty much a wash. But hey! I don’t have to work 14 hours today! WOOOO.
Manager: “Team let’s make sure to come in tomorrow to catch up. We’re behind schedule.”
Wait what? Tomorrow is Saturday!!??
Rinse. Wash. Repeat.
I look back at those days and I question why I allowed myself to tolerate this cycle. With back to back busy seasons at that. Then I remember. It was my first job and I didn’t know any better. On top of it, all my close friends were in Accounting. We were all going through it.
I was lost in the sauce thinking that this was the path to a fruitful future. I wanted to make it to partner, but each year I spent in Public Accounting decreased any chances of that by 100%.
It wasn’t even entirely the hours that pushed me away. It was the politics.
So my tip for the day – know your worth and know when you’re getting played.
Until next time fam.