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  • Writer's picturePGAA Tax

How to Future-Proof Your Tax Team

Ever-evolving tax polices, tax technology transformation, global supply chain fissures, geo-politics, ESG and the rise of tax transparency, the endless debate of what a corporation's "fair share" means... How will you ever find tax professionals who can lead a tax team through the relentlessly changing landscape of tax when you or your colleague decide to leave? We've got you covered.

1. Magnifying Glass: Take an honest look at your weaknesses

Finding the right successors for yourself or another on your team is a careful art. Certainly you've got ideas and expertise on how things should be done, what tanked and what was successful. But don't let your ego fool you. Finding a successor is not about finding for your doppelgänger; it's about knowing your blind spots, and where your strengths did not make a lasting impact. Find the holes in your tax department and plant a new person's strengths there.

2. Binoculars: Look at the the long range of tax

A key to your team's (and company's) future success is about evolution and adaptability. "Pivot" is the word of our current times, so think about powerful trends, evolving social norms, and the changing landscape of tax risk, tax policy, and tax benefit strategies as your company brings tax into ESG. Where is tax headed when you leave? Envision the person and people who can meet the future of tax.

3. Reading Glasses: Find candidates who can future-proof your company

This is where we come in. We talk with so many tax professionals. Like SO many. Within a few minutes of talking, we know if a person is motivated by entrepreneurial successes or meeting the minimum requirements. We can hear passion in seconds. People who will future-proof your tax team are ones that love data analytics and their favorite tax software so much that they start talking really fast at us and forget we are recruiters without a CPA. ;) If you don't have such candidates inside your company, look outside.

4. Safety Goggles: Test top two successors' ability to reinvent and operate with integrity

The next step is to put your successors to the test. If they already work in your tax department, give them challenges that test their abilities. If you bring in an outside successor -- test their abilities by assigning them interview scenario challenges and STAR based behavioral interview questions that will demonstrate their ability to get results.

5. Wide Angle Lens: Look at all your in-house talent

While you are challenging your successors to reinvent and operate, also encourage them to ask their direct reports to think of what their own ideal successor would look like.

6. Eye's on a moving target: Be a NIMBLE, Responsive company.

Successful businesses will have clear scenario plans. They are already moving away from being heavily reliant on fossil fuels. They will maximize climate change tax incentives and are not ignoring supply chain cracks. Their business is researched in geo-politics and they are mission critical, and tax optimized. Because carbon intensive products will be taxed accordingly, future-proofed companies will ensure that from raw materials to production and distribution is to be clean and efficient.

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