Accountant by Day, Wichita Wings Forward by Night
Finding the Right Work-Life Balance to Chase Your Passion
You don’t often hear the terms accountant and professional soccer player in the same sentence. But for Jared Robbins these two interests go hand-in-hand.
Robbins joined the ABBB team in 2018 as a full-time staff accountant in Wichita. A junior college transfer student from Northern California, he interned with the firm while earning his degree from McPherson College and playing on the men’s soccer team. While playing for the Bulldogs, Robbins was named an All-Conference Defender twice. The Wichita Wings professional indoor soccer team took notice and in late 2019 recruited Robbins as a forward.
About the Wichita Wings
Founded in 1979, the Wichita Wings enjoyed a 22-year run before folding in 2001, at which time the team was the oldest professional soccer franchise in the U.S. An attempted comeback in the 2011-2012 season was short-lived. But last year – 40 years after professional soccer first came to Wichita – the Wings took flight again, playing in the Major Arena Soccer League 2, which is the second division professional indoor soccer league in the U.S. Teams in the league hail from Texas, Colorado, New Mexico, Kansas and Mexico. The Wings play at Hartman Arena in Park City.
When you enjoy accounting and finance professionally, but also have a passion for soccer, work-life balance can be a challenge. Especially when the indoor soccer season runs from November through March, encompassing tax season. But with the right team and resources, it’s possible.
Let’s hear from Robbins on his keys to success both on and off the soccer field:
“My manager has been really good to work with. He is flexible with everything like practices, games, and events with the team. Everyone on the team has full-time jobs so they schedule practices around work hours, but some of the travel takes place on Friday and Saturday. As long as I get my hours in and get my work done, Ben has been really supportive about me chasing this.”
Company Culture: Flexible and Remote Work Arrangements
“The ability to work remotely allows me to work while we travel, which is really helpful.”
“During the summer, I play in the semi-pro outdoor soccer league called the NPSL (National Premier Soccer League). This team, FC Wichita, travels just as much, and practices are at a much harder time to work into a typical work schedule. For the last two summers, my manager encouraged me to work a flex schedule so I still get my hours in, but was still able to chase my passion, which was really the reason I ended up in Kansas [from California] in the first place.”
Tell us More about Playing Professional Soccer
“Lots of people have heard of the Wichita Wings here in Wichita so it’s cool to go around and occasionally have people recognize the logo or me as a player.”
“Indoor soccer is a lot easier for people to watch because of the higher amount of action. Envision a hockey rink with turf, so you still have the boards and stuff. It is a much faster pace, much more physical, and involves a lot more scoring. I would guess that our average attendance this year has to be 2,500-3,000 people in the games so far. A few of my coworkers have even come to support me and the team!”
The Right Balance
“Although playing soccer takes up a lot of time, I enjoy every minute of it. I’m really thankful to work for a CPA firm that sets me up for professional success and supports my love of soccer, too. You have to find the right balance that works for your career goals, interests, and dreams. I’ve found that here at ABBB.”