Archive for the ‘Culture’ Category

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Just Do It!!!

In Accounting & Finances,Business,Culture on March 1, 2014 by Sufen Wang

WWS-Procrastinate1The First Step is the Always Hardest: Just Do It

Here’s an idea: what if everyone just did his or her assigned job? I am NOT talking about working beyond one’s responsibility, but rather, doing what one is supposed to do in the first place…nothing more. After all, you can’t do more until you finish first things first.

I have been in a constant battle with a property manager to give me her books, from January 2013 onward. I’ve written countless e-mails and made numerous phone calls following up with her, chasing after her for the books. And all of that so I can do MY JOB, like reconcile the bank accounts and see if there are bills that we missed, or hey, just close the damn books so I can get a loan refinanced or even sell the place.

A note pinned to a cork board with the text Do It Now! Later Becomes Never!The time wasted is unthinkable. The money missed is uncountable. The loss of opportunities is unrecoverable. The lack of response and urgency is unbelievable. I am not asking for her to go beyond her duties, but just to do her job on a timely basis! But maybe that’s asking too much in today’s society.

imagesI like to imagine a world where everyone does the job they “agreed upon.” What a concept, right? Do what you promised you would do…deliver on time what you promised to deliver…just do it! Think how much more fluidly everything would progress instead of this grating, grinding, stop-and-go procrastination and miscommunication. Work is already hard enough in and of itself; it doesn’t need to be made doubly stressful by people dragging their feet like they’re stuck in a swamp.

But all we can really do is ask these questions and hope there’s some response: Why is it so hard to just do it? Where is one’s integrity?  Where is one’s pride of accomplishment, of satisfaction? Because ultimately it’s up to those very individuals to realize how much easier life could be, if they Just Do It…

Sufen Wang, M.S.Accountancy
www.sufenwang.com
Wang Solutions, Long Beach, CA (562) 856-0793
Editor: Hannah Huff, M.F.A. Creative Writing: Poetry, (626) 806-5805

Articles

Has All Pride Been Swallowed?

In Accounting & Finances,Business,Culture,Education on January 23, 2014 by Sufen Wang Tagged: , , , ,

guys_89_M4Below Average is the New Average

Have you noticed that we take no pride in our actions nowadays? Or is it that we no longer have any shame in our actions – or non-actions?  Maybe the question should be “Have you no shame?”

I recently received a handful of homework assignments from my students, and let me tell you, they were shamefully bad. The writing was barely decipherable, and never mind the numbers and calculations. Oh, and some papers were physically dirty with coffee and food stains. The work was sloppy to say the best and despicable to say the least. I was angry at first, then anger turned into disappointment.

images“Where is our pride? Have we lost it? Why haven’t we strive for ‘excellence’ instead of ‘just okay, that’ll do, happy with passing?’ Why is ‘just getting by’ an actual goal instead of seeking brilliance?”  My students were speechless when I asked them these questions. 

I told them to re-do all of the assignments in a more polished manner. “Pretend those assignments are your financial statements being given to your company’s shareholders, and the retention of your job is dependent upon the appearance of the documents. You should be proud to place your name on the presentation!”

motivational_quote_work_hard_and_be_proud_of_what_your_achieveWell, my soap-box speech reached 50% of my class, which was more than I had hoped for. And I was pleased with that 50%. Wait, did I just lower my expectations to meet the mass “I don’t care” generation?  Shame on me!

Sufen Wang, M.S.Accountancy
Wang Solutions, Long Beach, CA (562) 856-0793
Editor: Hannah Huff, M.F.A. Creative Writing: Poetry, (626) 806-5805

Articles

Entitlement…

In Accounting & Finances,Business,Culture on December 26, 2013 by Sufen Wang Tagged: , , , , , , ,

entitlement_is_important_to_your_b2b_messagingThe Entitlement Generation: Success is NOT Guaranteed

Entitlement is defined as “having a right to something and/or the amount to which a person has a right.”  Note that the key phrase is “having a right” to something – not “having to earn the right.”

urlSeveral comments from my accounting students had prompted me to ponder the word “Entitlement.”  When I asked one student what his 5-year goal was, he replied, “To be a Chief Financial Officer.”  Ah, a very aggressive goal from someone who never showed up to class on time, missed over 22% of classes, could not find his textbook for two weeks, and who hardly turned in any homework assignments and projects. But he was also one of my smartest students who grasped accounting concepts almost immediately.

j01186631My response to him was, “How about you locate your accounting book and try to pass my class first?!”  He laughed with a hint of embarrassment. (Maybe this means there is a glimmer of hope for him?!) He ended up receiving a low D – not due to a lack of knowledge on the subject matter, but instead due to his lack of assignment completions, projects, and attendance. Sadly, this “D” will follow him for a long time.

Students do not understand that their Grade Point Average (GPA) is their resume as they accumulate actual job placements and experiences.  A “D” in an upper division course in one’s specific field will hinder a job seeker’s chance of competing with his peers.  Again, unfortunately because he assumed his “smarts” entitled him to a free pass in terms of class requirements, my student acted unwisely and did not advance well in his pursuit of his college degree.

Entitlement3Another case of assumed entitlement happened last year when one of my business major students came to class saying exasperatedly, “I’ve been filling out job applications for the last week and every opening requires that I have 3 to 5 years of experience in my field. How the heck am I going to get that?”  Ah, perhaps there should be an App where you can download 3 to 5 years of experience instantaneously, and voila! it’s added to one’s resume. 

good_study_habitsThese are sad examples of what our young (future) generation of college students is dealing with. They feel that simply because they’re going to school, they are entitled to jobs for which they have made no effort to prepare – on an educational level and/or on an on-the-job work experience level.  If only they would shut down that video they’ve been playing day and night and instead pick up the textbooks, do the work, and put in the time. Then, and only then, will they have a “chance” to reach their career goals!

Sufen Wang, M.S.Accountancy
Wang Solutions, Long Beach, CA (562) 856-0793
Editor: Hannah Huff, M.F.A. Creative Writing: Poetry, (626) 806-5805

Articles

A Home Away from Home:

In Accounting & Finances,Business,Culture on November 18, 2013 by Sufen Wang Tagged: , , , , , , ,

IRS Waives Low-Income Housing Limits for Colorado Disaster Victims

MH900437833When natural disaster strikes, the IRS strikes back with letting regulations slide. The landslides, severe storms, and flash floods that wracked the Colorado landscape in mid-September destroyed at least 1,500 houses and damaged 17,500 more. That left a lot of people with no place to call home.

It’d be plain silly to make someone who just waded through mud and muck wade through rules and paperwork for a warm bed. Accordingly, the IRS suspended certain limitations for projects financed with low-income housing tax credits or exempt facility bonds. In other words, any Colorado disaster victim, regardless of income, can temporarily stay in one of these residential rental projects. And not just in the immediate area – operators of these facilities anywhere in the nation can provide shelter for the storm victims.

MH900423029And FEMA also didn’t give victims a rain check on relief. FEMA approved a third extension to the Transitional Sheltering Assistance (TSA) program. The TSA pays for eligible flood evacuees to stay in participating hotels and motels, with FEMA and the state picking up the bill. Victims whose homes are still uninhabitable or without utilities will continue to have a safe place to stay until November 17, replete with sticky remote and lumpy pillows. Let’s give these federal agencies a round of applause for giving the disaster victims one less thing to worry about. And if you want to lend a helping hand, then check out http://helpcoloradonow.com/.

MH900250101

Sufen Wang, M.S.Accountancy
Wang Solutions, Long Beach, CA (562) 856-0793
Editor: Hannah Huff, M.F.A. Creative Writing: Poetry, (562) 806-5805

Articles

National Disability Employment Awareness Month

In Accounting & Finances,Business,Culture,Education,Human Resources on October 23, 2013 by Sufen Wang Tagged: , , , , , ,

MH900325732Make a Difference By Nurturing Diversity: October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month

By Presidential Proclamation, October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM). Put your party shoes on because this national campaign celebrates the many and varied contributions of America’s workers with disabilities. Okay now take your party shoes off and listen up because NDEAM also raises awareness about disability employment issues that continue even as we speak. I mean as I speak. I mean as I write and you read.

How about we just let President Obama speak for himself:

“During National Disability Employment Awareness Month, we nurture our culture of diversity and renew our commitment to building an American workforce that offers inclusion and opportunity for all… I urge all Americans to embrace the talents and skills that individuals with disabilities bring to our workplaces and communities and to promote the right to equal employment opportunity for all people.”

2013PosterEnglishFrontAppropriately, the theme for 2013 is “Because We Are EQUAL to the Task.” And here’s your first task: spread the word. You could start by sprucing up the décor around town with NDEAM Posters. Or if tape and paper is too old school for you, then post about NDEAM on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. And while you’re at it, leave a NDEAM link trail wherever you go. Look – here’s one: http://www.dol.gov/odep/topics/ndeam/. And wait, what’s this? It’s another link with great ideas on how to get people to think about equal employment! http://www.dol.gov/dol/media/photos/slideshows/20131001-NDEAM.htm.

But you can’t be promoting NDEAM’s message if your own company isn’t up to scratch when it comes to disability awareness. So use October to review company policies, train supervisors, and educate employees about fostering a workplace culture inclusive of people with disabilities. National Disability Employment Awareness Month is above all a reminder to work together and appreciate everyone’s differences – ahem, members of the House of Representatives. When that happens, there’s no task that we’re not equal to. 

MH900436025Sufen Wang, M.S. Accountancy

Wang Solutions, Long Beach, CA (562) 856-0793

Editor: Hannah Huff, M.F.A.

Creative Writing: Poetry, (626) 806-5805

Articles

The Lost Art of Writing:

In Accounting & Finances,Business,Culture,Education on August 9, 2013 by Sufen Wang Tagged: , , , , , , ,

It’s Not Too Late to Learn How to Communicate!

MH900439943Texting, tweeting, e-mailing – writing is a part of our everyday lives, right? But the question is, is it good writing? NO!

We’re rapidly losing the art of composition in this digital world. What happened to our thought process?  Specifically, what happened to knowing by heart the basic guidelines of the APA writing style?  Here’s a refresher course in case you can’t seem to remember…

MH900089202The APA (American Psychological Association) style is most commonly used to cite sources within the social sciences. APA formatted essays always include four major sections: the Title Page, Abstract, Main Body, and References. When formatting a paper in APA style, you’ll need to pay attention to mechanical details such as typeface, line spacing, margins, and page headers. Another major part of APA style is reducing bias in language. The goal is to provide scientific info that’s unbiased, specific, and sensitive to group labels.

MH900445122APA writing guidelines are like DMV driving guidelines.  We have to learn the DMV rules in order to drive, just as we must learn APA guidelines to write. APA rules help drive our thoughts into well-written text on a piece of paper. Unfortunately, not everybody is aware of the importance of the APA writing style (and DMV rules too, but that’s another story for another day).  

MH900357981Recently I posed a final project to my accounting class. It was about a business man manufacturing bird cages, dog houses, and cat castles. The focus was on products, not the actual animals. You can see where this is heading. After three weeks of analysis of the profit margin, the break-even point, and the difference between variable and fixed cost, the final question was:

“What do you see as the role of accounting in managerial decision-making? Defend the use of cost-related accounting for planning and decision-making purposes.”

Below is the answer I got from one of my students:

 “I think that John should invest  in taken care of birds because they are less messy and not much to do with  them to maintain them and feed them and is able to let them out to fly around they will not make a mess, like the dog or a cat would by tearing the couches up and eating  on the shoes”

Did I mention this was a college class? And that this is a direct quote? My student could not even place a final period to finish the “thought.”

MH900212041The carelessness of thought and the uninspired minds of our society are overwhelmingly frustrating to me. I think it’s time we think just a little harder – it’s not that hard, really, everyone should give it try. Obviously, you don’t have to write an essay every time you send an e-mail or text, but these are good places to learn how to be even a bit more eloquent. College writing is just a test of how well you can articulate yourself in the real world, and it pays off to be conscious of how you communicate. If we stop being so sloppy in our writing, we’ll be able to understand each other better, and have more meaningful, more productive conversations.  

Sufen Wang, M.S. Accountancy
Wang Solutions, Long Beach, CA
(562) 856-0793
Editor: Hannah Huff, M.F.A. Creative Writing: Poetry, (626) 806-5805

Articles

Save Your Skin this Summer:

In Culture,Education,Family on July 22, 2013 by Sufen Wang Tagged: , , , , , , ,

MH900021669Reduce Your Risk for Skin Cancer

Well, summer is upon us and that means the hot sun is also upon us. Before you don that bikini for a long day at the beach, think about the skin you’re in – it’s the only one you have! Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the United States, but here are some ways to lower your risk.

MH900389354You can never get enough sun – is a lie. The top risk factor for skin cancer is exposure to sunlight (UV radiation) and those UV rays can damage your skin in less than 15 minutes. And if you’ve spent years in the sun, and/or had at least one severe sunburn – one where even wearing clothes is painful –  your risk of skin cancer is even higher.

MH900362048That being said, you’re obviously going to have to go outside sometimes. The worst time for UV exposure is between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., so if you’re running errands around midday, stick to the shade. You can also create your own shade: carry an umbrella or wear a wide-brimmed hat to protect your head and neck. Although it might be sweltering hot, you should wear proper clothes to keep your bare skin from getting burnt. Loose-fitting long-sleeved shirts and long pants made from tightly woven fabric work best, even if they sound incredibly uncomfortable. For a finishing touch of sun-safe style, wear wrap-around sunglasses that block both UVA and UVB.

MH900440540Don’t think it’s safe to go skinny dipping just because there’s cloud cover. UV rays can still reach you on hazy days and they reflect off surfaces like water and sand. You’re not even safe in your own car: the sun’s rays can penetrate windshields and windows. Also, a wet T-shirt offers less UV protection than a dry one, but a dry T-shirt still only has less than a 15 SPF rating – which won’t save your skin. That means if you think you’re going to be in the sun, you should take two whole minutes to put on a thick layer of minimum 15 SPF sunscreen. Reapply the sunscreen every two hours or if you get wet.

Finally, everyone should know by now that indoor tanning is NOT any safer than being out in the sun. Sunlamps and tanning booths expose you to UV radiation, which causes skin damage and skin cancer, and getting fake tans is more dangerous before age 30. Don’t believe it? The NCI reports that women who use tanning beds more than once a month are 55 percent more likely to develop melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer. Why do you want to look orange anyways?


MH900360724Perhaps most importantly, you should get to know yourself. A regular self-exam of your whole body will let you see what’s normal on your skin, so you know when something abnormal shows up. That could be anything from a new mole to an old mole changing size to a sore that doesn’t heal. If you do notice anything, visit your doctor. Take a little extra time to pamper your skin this summer so you can enjoy the sun for years to come!

A Word on your Summer Safety! 

Sufen Wang, M.S.Accountancy,

Wang Solutions, Long Beach, CA (562) 856-0793.

Editor: Hannah Huff, M.F.A. Creative Writing: Poetry, (562) 806-5805

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