The article below talks about creating a successful working relationship from a manager perspective. If you're not a manager, you can still learn from the tips provided. Just tweak them a little - I've reworded the tips to show them from a staff accountant perspective.
Tips for Positive Communication
- Clearly define and communicate expectations. Make no assumptions. Ask questions.
- Increase trust by being honest and open. If you made a mistake, own up to it. If you don't know what to do, ask again. If you are frustrated about something, talk about it.
- Understand your manager’s communication style. If your manager loves details, be prepared to share them. If your manager wants the bottom line, start there.
- Focus on progress, not mistakes. Don't get discouraged by constructive feedback. Welcome the conversation. Ask how you are progressing.
- Don’t let emotions drive your communication. Stay calm and clarify if you don't understand.
- Don't be defensive or argumentative when receiving feedback. Think first then ask questions.
- Don’t be ok with vague descriptions of your areas for improvement. Ask for specifics and examples.
- Ask for feedback as you work together. Be specific and clear about the type of feedback you are looking for. Most staff want to know how they met expectations and how they compare to a typical staff doing a similar task. Ask.