When it comes to our finances, we are certainly up to our toes! It drives us nuts! We become the best auditor and controller of all times. We want to make sure that we have the right budget plan. We want to make sure to pay our bills on time or at least promptly. We want to save and so on! What more if we talk about business?
Accounting plays a significant role not only at home but especially in business. It helps business owners track the incoming and outgoing flow of their finances. Financial information will help business decision-makers to make major and minor decisions.
One funny story – random invoice!
As of this writing, I’m a part-time virtual assistant in a B2B Social Media Marketing platform company. One of my daily tasks is to follow up with unsettled invoices. I called up ABC company to get a hold of their accounts payable to ensure that they received the invoice we sent and make a payment. A kind woman assisted me, saying they did not receive any as she checked the invoice number on their records. So, to cut the story short, I sent the invoice for their reference!
During the process, the invoice though, has a different addressee! It is named to XYZ company! My resource showed that it is indeed to XYZ company and is billed to ABC company hence I called them. I further checked and found out that they are both different companies! But I’m confident because looking at the data; it seems that they work as one just like other companies we are dealing with. I didn’t bother and didn’t want to disturb my colleagues, so I sent an email attaching the invoice!
The next day, I received a forwarded email saying that the invoice is for XYZ company and ABC company is out of business. As I go through the email thread, they all look confused and worried because apparently, we are talking about a 77k+ USD invoice! No company wants to pay someone’s else invoice unless it’s for a good cause, I guess. So, here are the things I have learned from this incident!
Dealing Work Problems Like a CEO
I admired the lady from ABC company who assisted me! She kept her word during our phone conversation. She assisted me in finding the right contact. She even replied to my email explaining their side. She didn’t judge me, and my company rather helped us to sort things out. A good sign of professionalism and character! She was calm throughout. She redirected me to the right path without being rude or arrogant.
I also stayed calm. The incident helped me to understand the scenario and to see my areas of improvement. I didn’t want to stress myself and lose more focus. So, I was just patient with myself.
Clearly, I had a missed. The data that I have has discrepancies that I ignored. The fact that I crossed checked it and came to know about these discrepancies, still I was not bothered! I intend to collect and finish my task. That’s it. I don’t want to disturb my colleagues. I know that they are busy with their responsibilities too. I want to be self-reliant, which turned into a poor result.
On the other hand, it was a lesson learned! There are times that you need to take a break, consult the team or your superior if you noticed some discrepancies. Particularly when dealing with monies! You don’t want to send a random invoice to someone and asking them to pay it when it is not theirs in the first place! Trust me; it isn’t very pleasant!
Asking is a must!
Don’t Quick to Judge.
Our CEO was patient with me as well as my superior! They did not question me nor say a word. I just explained my side. I haven’t received any response from them yet while I write this content, but I trust that they will help me avoid this occurrence after all my resources come from them! Hence you know why I am confident.
When someone made a mistake, then the best thing to do is to investigate. The part is to listen on both sides. This way, you will understand and get a clearer picture of the scenario, and you will be able to help resolve the problem. Some people are quick to judge. Especially if the person who committed the mistake is perceived as a weak link or is an outsourced employee. Quick judgment on a person’s character or abilities because of a miss should not be part of our professionals’ attitude. You are a professional, and you are there to help.
I respect that the people I made confused are responsive with one another and have shown courtesy! They all have the intention to help and sort things out. Despite their busy schedules, they have addressed an email (which I know the least priority for some of them) to reach the right contact. Not to mention that these are two different companies! Both sides have the initiative to solve the matter in a quick and timely manner.
Always be approachable. Never put off till tomorrow what may be done today! Resolve any problem as soon as possible.
At any given time, you might receive random emails, documents, parcel, or invoice that is highly confidential. If that’s the case, be responsible enough to keep it confidential and help reach the right recipient. Delete all trails if necessary. It may sound like a simple act of courtesy, but it will make a huge impact as an employee. Professionals, big or small, must always have a sense of accountability. We are humans, and we are not fail-proof! What if it happens to you?
Yes! It is hard to keep up with a fast-paced working environment! Especially when dealing with accounting and finances. But keep in mind to be always light and not to take things too personal when at work. Don’t stress yourself. Avoid too many tensions. There’s no perfect world. We continue to strive to perfect our profession, skills, and work attitude but admit it. There are times that you will still fail or miss something. If that happened, remember the following;
- Stay Calm.
- Admit own mistake.
- Don’t quick to judge.
- Be responsive.
- And stay confidential.
What is your story? Leave me a comment below, share this story!
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