Stacy Kildal, Advanced QuickBooks ProAdvisor
Owner/Operator & Co-Founder
Kildal Services, LLC & RadioFree QuickBooks
Twitter: @StacyKildal; @RadioFreeQB
Click here to see the other honorees
of the 2013 "Most Powerful Women
in Accounting" awards.
What advice would you give to female college students about the opportunities for women in the accounting profession?
For female college students in ANY industry – don’t wait for opportunities. Seek out ways to create your own.
What advice would you give accounting firms on things they could do to better retain and advance more qualified female staff?
The same that I would give them to retain and advance male staff: offer options. Be flexible with working from home and taking time off for parenting. These days, almost everyone I know that has kids, male or female, suffers because they’re afraid to take work off for a Halloween party at their kids’ school/daycare or have to scramble to arrange daycare if one of their children is sick. This, to me is ridiculous. Life happens, and most of the time, what we do isn’t saving lives. Don’t make employees feel guilty for wanting to be good parents and take care of their kids. The same rules apply for those without children; I see my friends and colleagues struggling in similar ways as they try to care for aging parents.
How have you managed to balance your professional and personal life obligations, whether that includes family, etc?
Balance? I think it’s an illusion; a fairy tale. For any small business owner, the lines are so blurred. I might be “done” working, but with clients scattered all over the world in so many time zones, I’m usually at least checking emails while I’m making dinner or waiting to pick my daughter up from school.
How mobile are you regarding your work? How have mobile devices and apps impacted your productivity and work-life balance?
100% mobile. Partly because I’ve been traveling so much lately and partly because of the kids. Perfect example: I usually have about an hour from when I drop my daughter off to volunteer at her old elementary school to when I need to pick her up. Not enough time to go home, or go get my son from daycare. What I do is bring my Mac, use my iPad as a hot spot, and go around the corner and work in my “parking lot office” – the front seat of my escape.
Without my wonderful little MacBook Air and Ipad, this wouldn’t be possible. As someone with a family and 2 businesses to run, combined with the travel I do to teach accountants how to move their practices online, there really is no work/life balance. It all sort of blends together. Mobile devices and apps, while keeping me connected to work more than ever before, also keep me connected to my family. We use Facetime and Google Hangouts even when I’m not traveling.
As far as work goes, I’d much rather have these attached to me most of the time so that I can deal with situations as their arise instead of having to make my clients (and myself) wait “till I get back to the office”.
What single piece of technology could you absolutely not live without, and why?
Please don’t make me choose just one! My iphone if I HAVE to make a decision. I can do almost everything I need to on it. Access QBO, my UniData hosted files, the PC in my office, deposit checks, pay bills, book travel, waste lots of time on Reddit…
What is your favorite professional mobile app, and why?
My new favorite app is Calendars 5 by Readdle. Works great with Google Calendar and is much better than the native calendar app in iOS7
What do you like to do when you actually have free time without any obligations to work or family?
Reading, biking. Getting 8 hours of sleep right in a row…