Sitting in America’s heartland, the rolling fields of Ohio, is a little-known (to the rest of the country) public accounting firm named Rea & Associates. This 12-office, 230-person outfit doing roughly $30 million in annual revenue does something that you might think is a bit corny, but I really like it. Their mantra is called “The Rea Way.” What is it? A code of dress for all employees (picture embroidered beekeeping suits)? Special fragrances (cherry blossoms and Old Spice)? Company cars (old sedans with big plastic chickens on top)? None of the above. Shocking, I know. What it is, “The Rea Way,” is a to-the-point code of conduct that is expected…but not in a Stepford Wives sort of way. You buy in or you don’t, simple as that. Drink the Kool-Aid or work somewhere else. I think it’s pretty cool, actually; I would buy in.
“Serving as a guide to good business and unimpaired decision-making,” this statement was developed as a way to keep Richard Rea’s values alive. Here it is, “The Rea Way”:
You are a Rea ambassador. Always. Maintain integrity
in all you do. Be honest. Be a good steward. Take
ownership. Respect profitability. Respect your clients,
your colleagues and yourself. Be generous with praise
and constructive with criticism. Take your work
personally. Quality counts. Choose to be positive,
every day. Show others that you care. Work together.
Rejoice in others’ achievements. Embrace change. Be open
to the possibilities. Opportunities abound. Believe in
yourself. Dare to dream. Value your clients. Challenge
them to reach their potential. Be a person of influence.
Share your ideas. Raise up leaders. Listen intently. Let
your listening fuel action. Fail forward. Be persistent in
finding creative solutions. Invest in your family, your
community and your future. Never stop learning.
Have fun. Enjoy the journey…
One of Rea’s partners, David Cain, is proud as a peacock when he speaks of the firm, their employees and the solid footing they’ve built for the future.
What can you take from this for your firm or accounting department? Is your place of business walking the walk and talking the talk?
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