Latest News

CPA mental health: How your firm can support and prevent common concerns

Written on Jan 8, 2024
CPA Mental Health Support and Prevention

               (fauxels / pexels)

Businesses can’t exist without the people who keep them running smoothly. The healthier a company’s employees, the healthier and more robust the industry and economy. 

As a result, mental health awareness is steadily increasing in importance across many industries, including the accounting profession. Many professional accounting organizations provide opportunities to earn CPE credits in courses concerning mental health. 

Why CPAs are commonly affected by mental health challenges 

The work-related demands that CPAs and accounting professionals face can lead to a work-life imbalance, leaving little time for necessary rest and rejuvenation. It’s essential that employees and their employers prioritize good wellness practices.  

The business costs of mental unwellness 

 Maintaining a holistic approach to the business and the human resources that keep it going is a humane duty and a good business strategy. 


A mentally healthy workforce enjoys … 

A mentally unwell workforce suffers … 

• Improved productivity 

• Decline in productivity 

• More creativity 

• Less creative workplace solutions 

• Less absenteeism and turnover 

• Higher absenteeism and turnover 

• Fewer sick days 

• More sickness 

• Energetic employees 

• Idle/Lethargic employees 

• Fewer mistakes 

• Extra mistakes 

• Better teamwork 

• Selfish attitudes 

• Pleasant company culture 

• A negative workplace reputation 

• Ease attracting and retaining talent 

• Lost talent 

• Positive company morale 

• Low morale 

• Improved bottom line 

• Decreased revenue 


How leaders can help 

Whether you’re the owner of a CPA or tax firm, a manager, or a leader on a group project, you have the power to make sure your team understands and respects mental health. The following strategies can help. 

Cultural change 

Mental health issues have a stigma around them. Sometimes, it’s rooted in shame from those needing help. Other times, a well-meaning colleague might avoid saying anything to a co-worker out of fear of not knowing what to say or coming across as nosey or wrong. 

The best way to get around the stigma and second-guessing is to create a company culture that feels empowered enough to discuss it. Start by advocating for strong mental health in your company value statement. Then, broadcast that statement often. 

Normalize conversations about mental health. Communicate that it’s okay not to be okay. Employees need to feel safe asking for a mental health day or seeking treatment. 

Process modifications 

Take advantage of technology to automate as much routine work as possible, freeing up team members to concentrate on work that requires higher order skills. emove busy work that can be automated.  

Duties such as payroll, bank reconciliations, expense reports, bookkeeping, and accounts payable are excellent places to start. Each organization has its unique bottlenecks, so determine yours and look for existing automated solutions. 

Automated technology can handle tasks that are more manual or routine in nature. This allows your team to focus on more fulfilling and complex assignments requiring critical thinking or strategic skills that deliver greater value. 

Automated solutions reduce the fear, anxiety and burnout CPAs can experience. They help improve job satisfaction, communication and teamwork. Technology can also give CPAs a boost and a better outlook in the workplace. 


Employers can redesign their workplace to promote healthy work-life balance, supporting overall well-being. 

Flexible hours can be impactful, and communicate the importance of breaks; use words if necessary. That’s to say, model the behavior, do not just talk about it. Use vacation days and mental health days. Don’t work through lunch. Take regular breaks throughout the day. 

Continually assess workloads to ensure realistic quantities and expectations. Teach employees how to set realistic goals for themselves. Consider outsourcing duties to lighten the workload. 

Other ways to help:  

  • Wellness perks programs or similar forms of motivation that promote overall well-being  

  • Healthy food options in the kitchen 

  • Discounted gym membership or reimbursement of membership fees 

  • Mental health and wellness resources and the time to use them 

  • Staff community involvement activities and/or a bank of paid volunteer hours for employees to give back to their community at a time that fits their schedule 

Humans have an innate sense of belonging. Mindfully create ways for CPAs to come together and fulfill that need. Even the most introverted employee craves social connection now and then. Social get-togethers offer chances for your team to build companionship, care and a sense of belonging. Accounting membership organizations, like The Ohio Society of CPAs, are also excellent sources for connection and community. 


Consider hiring a service or mental health coach to educate employees and managers on the following: 

  • Signs that indicate a co-worker may need mental health help 

  • Tips on what to say and not to say to a co-worker who seems mentally unwell or suicidal 

  • Vital strategies and training techniques for managers to implement 

  • Training the brain to reframe stressful situations into something positive or constructive 

  • Ways to thrive amidst the stresses of the accounting industry (instead of leaving the career field) 

Mental health support for all 

Accountants face regular, ongoing work stress. They need all the support they can get from leaders, co-workers and mental health professionals. 

Businesses that prioritize mental health enjoy many benefits, from happy, productive employees to a fun job culture, decreased expenses, and increased revenue. It pays to pay attention to mental health issues. 

Related Upcoming Events