When Annie Yoder, CPA, would tell her mother about her plans to change the world, her mom would always have the same response, “Worry about your back yard first.”
“Consider what you can influence in your back yard, whether it’s your community or organization, and those small things will have a ripple effect over a period of time that you will likely not even know,” Yoder said. “And for me, that’s been the approach over the past, and I do what I can to hopefully have a lasting impact.”
Yoder is the president of advisory and consulting practice at Rea & Associates and was recently named a Power of Change honoree at the Women, Wealth and Wellness Conference in July. The award salutes individuals who are advocates for women’s initiatives in the workplace and business community, serve as mentors or role models, make a significant impact on their communities or break barriers for other women.
The recognition came as a surprise to Yoder, who said she found out at a partner retreat.
“It means more than anyone in the room or whoever nominated me even knows,” she said. “I’m so thankful for those that came before me because I’m standing on their shoulders.”
With more than 15 years of experience in accounting, Yoder said some of the most meaningful moments of her career have been when her mentors or peers have given her constructive feedback. She said this has increased her self-awareness and helped her become a better person who can advocate and support others.
The power of mentors has also made an invaluable impact, she said, and the insight they’ve shared with her has helped her to grow throughout her career. Part of that has been an evolution of her leadership style.
“One of my mentors said it best when he said ‘Be Mrs. Potatohead. Watch those that you admire and take the pieces and parts of that and use it as your own,’ and that’s what I’ve tried to do over the years,” she said.
She said in the future she’s looking forward to improving her professional coaching skill set and staying connected with clients at Rea.
“A lot of times we don’t realize the impact we’re having on people, even in short spurts of interaction,” Yoder said. “I’m blessed to have a seat at the table to advocate for other women or those who are underrepresented.”
Click here to see the complete list of Power of Change honorees.