A Dream Fulfilled By A Walk-About Through Italy

ATKG prides itself on having a fun, collaborative, and progressive work environment, including unique employee perks you don’t see at other accounting firms.  The firm’s Walk-About program is designed to show appreciation to our rock star team for their years of service and dedication to the success of ATKG and its clients. As a team member celebrates their first 5-year anniversary with the firm, they are given 2 weeks paid time off to enjoy an adventure of their choosing. The Walk-About is in addition to their annual PTO. As a team member reaches their 10-year anniversary and every 5-year anniversary thereafter, they receive a month instead of 2 weeks! While away, team members must follow one critical rule – disconnect completely from work. That means no reviewing emails, returning phone calls or cutting your Walk-About short! It’s all about recharging, relaxing, and enjoying the best things in life.

Below is a Walk-About story about a dream come true in Italy by Senior Manager – Annette Goodson. We hope you enjoy it as much as we enjoyed hearing about it upon her return.

Annette Goodson, CPA
Senior Manager

In celebration of my 15-year anniversary with ATKG, I was granted a walkabout which allowed me to combine this celebration with the celebration of another milestone in my life – my 25th wedding anniversary. My husband, Stewart, and I had always dreamed of traveling to Italy and we figured that this was the perfect opportunity!

Over a two-week period, we traveled across Italy with our tour group consisting of eight other couples. We stayed in Sorrento, Rome, Perugia, Viareggio, Florence and Venice and visited many small towns in between. The drive along the Amalfi coast was beautiful, and we really enjoyed the laid-back lifestyle of the Tuscan countryside. We visited many churches that were architectural masterpieces and shopping in Florence was fantastic. Of course, we had to go on a gondola ride in Venice, but, the absolute highlight of our trip was the after-hours visit to the Vatican Museum and Sistine Chapel. With a group of only 21 people in the Chapel (including a fantastic guide), we could linger and take it all in and take as many pictures as we wanted. (This was the experience of a lifetime!)

In addition to all the fun experiences mentioned above, I learned several lessons along the way:

  • Pompeii had wine bars and pizza ovens. (Really, I have pictures to prove it.)
  • Wine is cheaper than Coca Cola. Save money—drink the wine.
  • When it gets hot in the afternoon, stop for an Aperol Spritz.
  • It’s easy to gain weight in Italy. (Every meal is multiple courses.)
  • After two weeks, it is good to come home to my ATKG family.

Thank you to ATKG for the walkabout!  It allowed me to fulfill a dream.