When tax season winds down, the lives of tax pros rev up. During the weeks leading up to April 15th, most tax pros are consumed by high stress and long hours. Having a life, connecting with friends and family, and staying healthy and active are next to impossible. Fortunately, most employers recognize this sacrifice and reward it with generous PTO policies and flexible schedules, allowing tax pros to make up for lost time from May through December. Here’s a look at what tax pros do in the off-season.
Reconnect with friends and family
During tax season, most tax pros spend little time with friends and family while they put in so many hours at the office. After April 15th, it’s time to rebuild those relationships by making lunch dates with friends and having family dinners. After so many weeks of limited contact, it’s important to show loved ones how much you appreciate them putting up with the annual disappearing act.
Indulge in self-care
During the busy season, healthy eating and exercise take a back seat to take-out food and long hours sitting at a computer. Once those long hours are no longer necessary, most tax pros get back into healthy habits and return to taking better care of themselves. Time to get back to cooking at home, packing a healthy lunch, hitting the gym, going for a run, and even booking a massage or a tee time.
Take a vacation
Tax pros know that taking a break from work is key to getting ahead. Just as athletes need to schedule recovery breaks during training, tax pros need vacation time to stay sharp and engaged. Shortly after tax season ends, vacation season begins. Whether you take a trip to someplace tropical, rent a cabin in the woods, or just book a staycation at a local resort, taking a break allows you to disconnect and unwind.
Summer is also an excellent time for tax pros to study for advanced certifications. Many non-CPAs study for the CPA exam and CPAs pursue additional credentials such as the Personal Financial Specialist (PFS), Accredited in Business Valuation (ABV), and Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA). It’s also a good time to catch up on the continuing education hours required to maintain such designations.
Tax pros tend to be a generous bunch. Volunteering is a noble way to spend time and make connections in the community. Some take a break from their day-to-day roles to build homes for Habitat for Humanity, volunteer with food banks, help at animal rescue organizations, or support children’s charities. Others use their powers for good by serving on nonprofit boards, where their skills are in high demand.
Most tax pros have several skills that keep them busy in the off-season. They may counsel businesses on ways to increase profits, advise individuals on investments or retirement planning, or perform payroll, bookkeeping, or forensic accounting services for their clients. They also spend time assisting with IRS audits and notices, and preparing returns for clients on extension. Office hours may not be as demanding, but there is always work to do for these busy professionals!
For information on tax professionals whose work is less seasonal, learn more about Private Accounting jobs.