Schools Training

5 Stress Busters for Students in Accounting Schools

16 FEB 2012
Career Path : Accounting

In Busier Than Ever! Why American Families Can’t Slow Down, an ethnographic account of the lives of 14 families over the course of one year, we meet Martin Klein, whose accounting training is put to the test when his employer, a semi-conductor firm, is taken over by a European-based multinational. All of a sudden, Martin has to cope with new accounting technologies and practices. He has to find a way to merge the two companies’ accounting systems, while grappling with the reality of a new employer. Work stations are rearranged, tools are changed, colleagues leave… How can students in accounting schools and business schools prepare for the demands of life after accounting training? By learning how to manage their stress levels before graduation. Here are some tips.


1. Identify stressful times in advance.

Tax-preparation season, which in Canada extends from January until the end of April, is the busiest time of year for most graduates of accounting schools. Seasoned professionals have tricks for making this “crunch time” more livable. Some take vacations directly before, so that they enter the season refreshed. Others change the way they organize their work during the season, limiting the amount of times per day, for example, that they check their voice mail, email or text messages, to avoid the “lost” time that transitioning from task to task too often entails. Some clear their personal obligations, limiting volunteer commitments and social engagements until May.


2. Schedule breathing time into your work day.

Some new graduates of accounting training struggle with time management, booking back-to-back appointments with clients and colleagues. One tip that accounting schools and business schools often share with students: always allow for a 15-minute break between appointments. This simple technique gives graduates of accounting training a chance to regroup.


3. Eat lunch. No, seriously. Eat lunch!


Always make time to step away from your desk to eat a mid-day meal – even if it is just for 15 minutes. Just as students at accounting schools and business schools can form connections over lunch in the caf that can last a lifetime, getting to know your colleagues on a less formal basis in the lunchroom can help foster goodwill that will colour your professional interactions, making your work life less stressful overall. According to one Ipsos Public Affairs-Randstad poll of more than 1000 Americans, 67% reported that having friends in the workplace made their jobs more enjoyable.


4. Cut down on your caffeine.


As students in accounting schools and business schools, we sometimes get into multiple-coffee-a-day habits that are best shed once joining the working world. It is called “liquid stress” for a reason. And don’t get us started on so-called energy drinks… Limit your caffeine consumption to one cuppa in the morning, and you will already be taking major steps to reduce your anxiety during stressful times after accounting training.


5. Invest in earplugs.


After accounting training, you may find yourself in a busy, open concept workplace. To limit distraction, pick up a pair of earplugs. Concentrating on your work can produce a pleasant, productive sensation, which athletes often refer to as “being in the flow.”

Students in accounting schools and business schools can prepare now for life after accounting training by integrating simple stress reduction measures into their lives. One, two, three, breathe!