Paul admits that many of the modern technology issues firms face can be challenging, and that they’re still working toward the goal of a better paperless environment. He took CPA Practice Advisor’s free Productivity Survey (www.CPAPracticeAdvisor.com/productivity) and is using the results to help guide them toward greater efficiency. The Productivity Survey helps gauge how a firm is performing compared to similar regional practices, and also offers suggestions based on a firm’s needs.
In addition to the remote access that gives him the ability to work on files when he’s away from the office, Paul has adopted personal technologies, such as his iPhone, which allow him to stay connected. But he sees both the benefit and potential downside of this. “Is it fortunate or unfortunate that we are always connected? It’s good to know what’s going on, but do we really need to constantly check?”
Like most firm partners, the hours during busy season can get a little long, but fortunately, Paul’s ability to turn off work is still functioning. He is active in the St. Bernadette Catholic Church, where he serves on the pastoral council and also offers pro-bono tax work to several priests.
Paul also spends as much time with Susan, his high school sweetheart and wife, as he can. Their adult children are also nearby: Angela, who recently graduated from Notre Dame and then spent a year volunteering at a Bolivian orphanage, and Vinnie, who is finishing an architectural engineering degree at Penn State.
The family vacations in the Jersey Shore beach community of Avalon, and are also outdoor enthusiasts, with Paul leading the charge as an avid skier, fly fisherman and mountain climber. He frequently skis and fishes locally, but also enjoys going to Jackson Hole, Wyoming and other locations with the family, as well as during the annual father-son skiing retreats he has had with friends and clients for nearly 30 years.
As a CPA, Paul may not be dodging the bullets and spies he could have faced serving in the FBI or CIA, but he’s found the perfect balance of professional curiosity and personal adventure. As a mountain climber, it’s quite fitting that one of Paul’s favorite quotes is from Sir Edmund Hillary: "It is not the mountain we conquer, but ourselves." Hillary, along with his Sherpa Tenzing Norgay, were the first to reach the summit of Mount Everest in 1953.