Nothing is quite as encouraging as hearing success stories from CPAs who have gone before you.

That’s why we recently sat down with Michael Marshall, CPA, CMA, CIA, and an External Audit Liaison for the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board and successful Wiley CPAexcel student, who shared tons of great advice on how you can establish your career and achieve professional success. The advice he shared was outstanding and we want to pass it along to you now.

You can watch the video here and keep reading:

Michael’s 3 Keys to Professional Success

1. Invest in Yourself

Investing in yourself does not stop at taking the CPA Exam. If you’re serious about building a successful career, you must always find ways to invest in yourself even after passing the CPA Exam.

When you’re consistently learning and improving your skills, you’re more likely to reap the rewards of a more satisfying and successful career.

The CPA has opened so many doors for Michael and he owes part of his professional success to taking advantage of all the learning opportunities the CPA introduced him to.

“Whether it’s further technical training with an audit, or whether it’s soft skills management leadership training–I’ve run the gamut”, he says.

2. Be Selective

Before you decide to pursue any job opportunity, consider this question: “Does this employer offer special benefits, such as company training programs and management or leadership development programs?”

Especially in this job market, where accountants and CPAs are currently in high demand, you need to be strategic about where you work. Michael suggests looking for management who will teach you things that are applicable to your current job, as well as timeless lessons you can take with you throughout your career, no matter what industry you find yourself in.

“As you invest in yourself, look for somebody else that’s also going to invest resources in you”, he says.

3. Find a Mentor

Establishing a relationship with a mentor can offer you an array of benefits and learning opportunities that will ultimately help you get ahead in your career.

Of course, finding a mentor can take some figuring out, but will always pay off. Michael suggests finding a mentor within your peers or seasoned professionals above you outside your chain of command.

“You only know what you know; you don’t know what they know”, Michael says.

If you can gain this level of perspective and wisdom, you’ll soon see the extraordinarily value in finding a mentor.

Every opportunity is what you make of it, after all.