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Accounting Stress – 21 Ways To Beat Burnout

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The Ultimate Guide To The Accounting Burnout Epidemic

Is the accounting industry suffering from a burnout epidemic?

The latest research from FloQast and The University of Georgia paints an alarming picture of burnout across the accounting industry. According to the innovative research project, which applied academic modelling to survey data, over 99% of accountants suffer burnout. While burnout is not unique to the accounting profession, 79% of accountants believe that stress and deteriorating mental health are pervasive issues within the industry.

99 Percent Accountants Suffer Burnout feat

The declining mental health and well-being experienced by accounting professionals is emerging as a critical issue affecting firms and individuals alike. However, firms can adopt a proactive approach to managing stress and avoiding burnout by leveraging the methods discussed in this article.

What is Accounting Burnout?

Burnout is an occupational phenomenon that emerges as a result of relentless pressure and strain imposed by overwhelming workloads, tight deadlines, and long hours. The inherent nature of accounting professionals’ challenging work predisposes them to stress-related burnout, which is reflected strongly in the latest research by FloQast.

stressed accountant experiencing burnout

Why Accounting is Stressful

As accounting firms expand, demand for highly skilled talent intensifies to meet the needs of a growing client base. In the current industry landscape of an accounting talent shortage, access to experienced team members presents a significant challenge, leading many accountants to extend their working hours to accommodate new clients.

Every month, accounting professionals navigate tight deadlines that require careful management. Missing these deadlines can lead to severe consequences, including loss of clients and financial penalties, amplifying the pressure on accountants. Then, next month, the same tensions arise again.

Clients have grown accustomed to rapid response times from businesses. Yet, the inherent nature of the accountancy profession doesn’t always align with such immediate expectations, leading to increased stress as accountants attempt to perform at an accelerated pace.

New technology is allowing accounting firms to complete work faster than ever. Yet, as the systems used by firms evolve, accountants face stress as they adapt to learning new tools while simultaneously completing existing tasks.

The demand for extended work hours can take a toll on accountants’ personal lives. An expectation to meet professional commitments often translates into reduced personal time. Stress arising from long working hours leads to difficulty maintaining a healthy work-life balance, ultimately leading to burnout.

Swiftly adapting to new regulations and guidelines presents a constant challenge for accountants. The pressure to maintain knowledge of new requirements while ensuring compliance and accuracy in their existing work can be overwhelming.

21 Ways to Manage Accounting Stress

Enable your team with increased capacity to prevent burnout before it happens by leveraging outsourced accounting services. Access highly skilled trained accountants from the Philippines to fix your capacity issues fast.

Take regular short breaks to maintain focus, reduce stress, and prevent burnout. Re-energise your workday and improve overall productivity with a 15-minute break away from your desk.

Establish achievable goals and expectations to prevent burnout. Realistic targets contribute to a healthier work environment and reduce the risk of feeling overwhelmed.

Define specific work hours that you maintain consistently to encourage work-life balance. Setting clear boundaries allows you to allocate sufficient downtime to recharge outside of work and increase overall productivity.

Delegating tasks to the most appropriate team member encourages more equitable work distribution and skill alignment. Overcome your fear of delegating to avoid becoming overburdened and reduce your stress level.

Focus on effectively managing your work day through consistent time tracking and management to meet deadlines without feeling rushed.

Divide your most challenging and complex tasks into small, achievable pieces to make them more manageable, prevent feeling overwhelmed, and support a steady workflow.

Raise workload concerns before you reach burnout! Open communication surrounding workload challenges is crucial. Addressing excessive workloads before they become overwhelming can lead to more effective solutions and prevent long-term burnout.

A positive and supportive work environment is crucial to prevent burnout. Team collaboration, mutual respect, and encouragement promote a healthier workplace culture.

Consider incorporating stress-relieving activities, including short walks and mindfulness exercises, into your daily work routine to ensure that you prioritise mental health.

When your workload is overwhelming, it’s essential to clearly understand your capacity and limit further activities. The ability to decline additional tasks when necessary is a critical survival skill for preventing burnout. Remember: it’s okay to set boundaries.

Continual learning and professional growth opportunities lead to increased job satisfaction. Embrace new opportunities to develop your skills, sharpen job performance and reduce burnout.

Streamline your processes by leveraging the latest technology, including AI, to complete routine activities and supercharge efficiency. Automation and new digital tools can free up accountants’ time and enable them to focus on more strategic aspects of their work.

Organised workflows enable accountants to complete tasks more efficiently with fewer errors, prevent chaos, and reduce stress. Investing time in designing efficient task processes can contribute to a smoother work experience for the entire team.

Stockpiling leave is a recipe for burnout! Prioritise mental and physical well-being by taking your leave and enjoying your well-deserved break from work. 

Leaving your work at work each day is an invaluable step accountants can take to recharge and return with renewed energy.

An industry mentor offering valuable guidance, support, and sharing experiences can help you navigate challenges and prevent burnout.

Networking with accounting industry peers helps you build professional connections and develop a sense of community. Sharing experiences and insights at industry events can be refreshing and inspiring.

Focusing on consistently eating a balanced diet supports your mental and physical well-being to boost cognitive function and reduce stress.

Incorporate regular physical activity into your daily work routine. Set achievable exercise goals and track your progress to build an effective stress management tool.

Consider seeking professional counselling to help manage stress and avoid burnout. Confidential counselling services can provide valuable support and suggest coping strategies to help you overcome accounting stress.

Beat the Accounting Talent Shortage NOW!

Ready to enable your team with increased capacity and prevent burnout before it happens? Book a FREE strategy call today to learn how TOA Global’s outsourced accounting services can revolutionise your firm.