Your TXCPA-SA Chapter is reaching out to your colleagues – CPAs, CPA candidates, student members and affiliates – to learn how you all are coping with the new normal brought on by COVID-19.
TXCPA-SA member Samanta K. Guerra, CPA, Senior Manager, ATKG LLP, offered the following information about her new normal.
Are you currently working from home, in your office solo or in the normal pre-COVID-19 arrangement? I started working from home on March 16th and went back to the office on May 1st. I plan to be at the office every Friday until there is new guidance from our partners.
How many people do you work with normally? We are a firm of 46 people.
What was a typical day like before “Stay Home, Work Safe”? I would get to the office between 7 and 9 am. That would vary depending on the day. During lunch I sometimes would attend networking events or go to the gym. I would stay until 5 and go home to do homework with the kids then I might work remotely. Or if I miss the 5 pm mark I would stay later to avoid traffic. Once a month I would go out of town to the Valley to visit clients and business affiliates.
What is your typical day like now? It is quite different. I start my day at about 7 or 8 am. During the day I assist my kids with virtual school’s homework and troubleshoot their laptops or video conferences (if necessary).
I work on different projects and attend client calls, team video meetings or “virtual happy hour.” I enjoy networking so if my schedule allows, I join community virtual meetings with different groups. During lunch I might assist with the cooking. My mom chops the vegetables and I would make the dish. I might exercise or just work through it with some food at my desk. Between 6 and 7 pm might do some cooking again and go out to walk or ride the bike with my kids or husband. Depending on my workload, I would go back to work some more. My day ends late most of the time. There is a lot of reading! Which I enjoy.
Can you share a small or big success story or silver lining that you didn’t expect? Being part of ATKG during these unprecedented times. We are all doing our part in doing the best for our clients, our team members and the community in this current situation. Just seeing contributions from everyone and the amazing output makes me feel so proud.
Has there been a small or big not-so-successful happening? Made all kinds of mistakes on my first two weeks working from home. The biggest one was not to take care of myself.
Any words of wisdom for your fellow accounting types? Take the time to take care of yourself and to relax a bit. Then see how you can lend a hand. The smallest things you do for someone can be huge for them. A bag of groceries, a call, a gift card, a text, a comment on social media, give away something you don’t need anymore (an old laptop, a bike), a requested piece of advice, a genuine interest in their life can make their day.
What do you miss the most? I miss the laughs from my loud co-workers LOL. My co-workers at home are a little quiet.
What are you most grateful for? For having a loving family, silly friends, and caring coworkers. For being able to enjoy nature when I walk in the neighborhood or when I take care of my garden.
Sounds like you have found a good balance, Samanta. Congratulations!