Posts Tagged ‘Lisa Blankman’

AYS taps Blankman for Board of Directors

Lisa BlankmanINDIANAPOLIS – Lisa Blankman, a Manager in the Audit & Assurance Services department of Sponsel CPA Group, has been appointed to the Board of Directors of AYS.

Formerly known as At-Your-School Child Services, AYS is a not-for-profit group that specializes in providing high-quality, educational and safe programs for Central Indiana students outside of school hours. AYS runs a number of educational and support programs aimed at helping students and schools succeed. AYS serves nearly 3,000 children through the school year and 500 during summers.

Blankman is a veteran CPA who conducts audits, reviews and agreed-upon procedures. She works with clients across a broad spectrum of industries, including construction and non-profits, helping them find efficiencies and become more effective in the marketplace. She is a graduate of Marian University with a bachelor’s degree in accounting.

“I am so excited and honored to join the board of AYS,” Blankman said. “This is a vital organization that brings so much benefit to Indianapolis-area youth. I will bring all my energy and financial expertise to bear as a director.”

Blankman joins AYS board

Lisa BlankmanLisa Blankman, a Manager in the Audit & Assurance Services department, has been appointed to the Board of Directors of AYS. Formerly known as At-Your-School Child Services, AYS is a not-for-profit group that specializes in providing high-quality, educational and safe programs for children outside of school hours. AYS runs a number of educational and support programs aimed at helping students and schools succeed.

Will salesforce Impact Your Company Culture?

Lisa BlankmanBy Lisa Blankman, CPA
Manager, Audit & Assurance Services

Indiana has been blessed with the arrival of a number of high-profile companies in recent years, either through acquisitions or organic growth. These include many information technology firms that represent the second wave of the Dot-com boom, such as salesforce, a cloud computing company that acquired ExactTarget in 2013.

The entrance of salesforce is having a rippling effect on the Indianapolis marketplace beyond the highly visible Salesforce Tower (rechristened from Chase Tower), with its name beaming from the top of the tallest building in Indiana.

It and other companies are bringing new ideas to the workplace that could spread to other businesses and alter their culture – not the type of work they do, but how they do it. This may make it more challenging for others to acquire and retain top talent, especially the Millennial generation that will soon dominate the U.S. workforce as Baby Boomers pass into retirement.

In short, Silicon Valley is invading Central Indiana with new ideas about the workplace and desirable concepts.

Cummins and other businesses have made a big splash with tours of new facilities that include onsite amenities that are now standard on the West Coast – coffee bars, exercise stations, lounge areas, laundry service, even things like video game consoles. The “new casual” atmosphere may seem shocking to older generations, but you can believe that locals in their 20s and early 30s know about the sort of accommodations their peers are being offered.

Beyond the actual worksite, the dot-com wave is also impacting old ways of how businesses conducted their human relations operations. Things like flexible hours, remote work days and casual dress codes are slowly seeping into the expectations workers have for their employers.

Younger generations also desire to work somewhere that mirrors their own values, so things like sustainability and diversity in the workforce become important.

If you’re in the leadership of an organization, you need to be thinking about how you are going to hire and keep the best talent, especially Millennials, given this new paradigm. Because our expectation is it’s only going to accelerate. HR practices that may seem bleeding-edge in the Indianapolis market now will be standard operating procedure in five or 10 years.

As with any aspect of your operation, if you don’t adapt to the changing times you will quickly find your organization left behind.

Start engaging with your HR department and think of ways your business can be proactive about offering accommodations to your team that will enhance their work experience. The goal is to build loyalty and encourage them to stay and develop their skillsets to benefit your organization, rather than seeing that talent drain away to more nimble competition.

You may not be able to replicate everything a salesforce or Cummins is doing, especially if you don’t have the resources of a Fortune 500 company. But you may be surprised how easy it can be, for example, to allow some of your staff to work remotely a few days a week. Or wear jeans and casual shirts in the office when they’re not out meeting with clients.

By making your company’s workspace inviting and flexible, thoughtful managers/CEOs can make their organizations a destination where talented people want to work, grow and become the next generation of leaders themselves. Talent management will be the critical success factor for the growing business in need of energetic talent to take the company to the next level of success!

If you have any questions or comments, please contact Lisa Blankman at (317) 613-7856 or email lblankman@sponselcpagroup.com.

 

Innovation Will Set You Apart!

Lisa BlankmanBy Lisa Blankman, CPA
Manager, Audit & Assurance Services

The concept of innovation is very critical to any organization that wants to grow and evolve. Some business leaders will fall into the pattern of doing things the same old way, almost out of habit. And not without reason: if the status quo has worked well for a long time, there is fear of disrupting a pattern of “success” by changing. A feeling of safety and consistency is comforting.

But the only truly consistent thing about the marketplace is that it is always changing. If you’re not looking ahead, you’re already at risk of falling behind. A “success” of the year 2005, may lead you to a false sense of accomplishment. A prudent leader must be intentional in driving new ways of thinking into their organization.

In order to build a business that will be successful for the long term, you must create a philosophy and corporate culture of continuous innovation. That mindset needs to be a component of everything you do. “Change” is the only constant in your strive to be superior to your competition.

When we talk about innovation, most people think of a specific product or service that is ahead of the competition. And that can be critical to your success, given the rapid changes in technology and social engagement. Devices and ways of doing things can quickly become obsolete.

Remember standalone GPS devices? Ten to 12 years ago, they were the hot new gadget everyone wanted. Now they’re in the technological dustbin. And how about fax machines? It’s difficult to even find one nowadays that’s not incorporated into a printer/scanner.

So beyond finding that next product or service, try to be innovative in the way you deliver that to the marketplace. Innovate in the way you interact with your customers, be creative in how you deal with vendors, employees and other stakeholders.

In short, focus on making innovation not a one-off event but a continuous theme that is driven into the heart and soul of your organization’s culture.

Examine your internal processes from time to time and ask yourself if they are up to speed. Look at what others in your industry are doing, especially those who have recently adopted new methodologies. Are they working? Can they be improved upon?

Talk to your customers and vendors and ask their advice. See what their needs are, and task your team with coming up with a better way to satisfy it. Solicit your team of employees: “Is there a better way to do this?”

For example, in the accounting/bookkeeping world it was once a universally accepted practice to make a daily run to the bank for deposits. Now that’s virtually all handled with online tools. And that came to be because some people thought about ways to make the process faster, simpler and more reliable. Improved Productivity!!

The reality is that new products and service follow innovation, not the other way around. Innovation is a mindset that constantly questions how you’re doing things, and looks for ways to do it better.

If you’re a business owner or manager, thinking innovatively means being responsive to what the market demands. You should want your company to be seen as creative and dynamic. An organization doesn’t necessarily have to live on the bleeding edge, but at least be in tune with the latest best practices.

Whatever you do, you don’t want your company to be regarded as being obsolete or out of the mainstream of what the consuming/retail customer expects. That is not a formula for growth and prosperity. At a minimum, be open-minded to a different way of accomplishing a goal and encourage your team members to make similar recommendations.

When your organization is viewed as being proactive in adopting new ways of doing business, it’s easier to attract more customers and explore untapped opportunities.

If we can assist you with any process improvement, please contact Lisa Blankman at (317) 613-7856 or email lblankman@sponselcpagroup.com.

Employee Spotlight: Lisa Blankman

Lisa BlankmanLisa Blankman was recently promoted to Manager in the Audit & Assurance Services department, just four years after joining the firm. Her duties include audits, compilations, reviews, 401k limited scope audits and agreed-upon procedures. She works with clients across a broad spectrum of industries, including construction and non-profits, helping them find efficiencies and become more effective in the marketplace.

Born in Greensburg, Ind., Lisa has lived on the Southside of Indianapolis for several years but is now in the process of moving to Broad Ripple. In her spare time, she serves on the board of Marian University’s Central Indiana alumni chapter. She is looking forward to her first European trip this fall, exploring Ireland and England. She also enjoys trivia contests and playing softball, and is a diehard fan of the Colts and Cincinnati Reds.

Lisa graduated from Marian University with a bachelor’s degree in accounting, and earned her CPA credential in 2013. She is a member of the Indiana CPA Society (INCPAS), the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) and the Young Professionals of Central Indiana.

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