Geoff Stein, CTA, Partner at Brown Wright Stein Lawyers, weighs in on the Women in Tax Special Budget Edition Lunch in Sydney.
Geoff has worked as a lawyer in Sydney for over 20 years, specialising in commercial and tax law. He advises clients on tax, commercial, trust, estate planning, wealth management and ancillary legal issues.
“Today was a great lunch for Women in Tax,” he says.
“We really got down to some hard tax issues, and it was great to see that from not just a female perspective, but to talk about the general issues and to have female voices promoted.”
What Geoff loves about Institute events
“The Tax Institute CPD events are fantastic, and I encourage all of our staff to attend as many as we can,” he says.
“They are pitched at various different levels, and it means that there's usually something for everybody.
“I'm a regular at the National Convention, and also go regularly to the Noosa Tax Intensive, and I find this a little bit of a step up in intensity, as you would expect at Noosa, and more focused on the particular problems in SME space.
“Generally, as a firm, we try and support it because it's about what we can do for each other, and it's a member based, member focused organisation, and the more we together put into it, the more collectively we get out of it,” he explains.
How membership has supported his career
Geoff says being a member of The Tax Institute has played a key role in his career development.
“Some of the opportunities that The Tax Institute has helped me with in developing my career have included the opportunity to speak and present, lead workshops at Noosa, and generally to be part of a community that enables me to have access to information and peers.
“Chartered Tax Advisers (CTAs), will be an emblem representing a quality of excellence and a dedication to a career in tax.
“What it also means is the ability to go overseas, where that designation is recognised, and have my credentials recognized without having to explain where I'm coming from,” he adds.
Why tax practitioners need to get on top of change
Geoff says technological disruption and change is difficult for tax people to understand.
“Most of us like routine, and most of us like the way things have always been done, but it's very important, like any other sector of the community, that we get on top of it,” he explains.
“I find, particularly, that it's challenging because I'm a bit of a dinosaur, perhaps an anachronism in my own lifetime.
“One of the advantages that I have is having younger staff teach me, almost a reverse mentoring, how to apply the technology that's available and make the best use of it,” he says.
And his advice for new professionals?
“Learn as much as you can, as quickly as you can, and join The Tax Institute,” he says.