BLI Leadership | Future Ready | Leadership / Management | Talent | Technology

Is your organization moving fast enough? A report from the Beach Retreat


[caption id="attachment_430709" align="alignright" width="533"] Members present their ideas on transformation at the MACPA Beach Retreat[/caption]

The key question in an era of exponential change is whether your organization, or you are moving fast enough? Are you getting ahead or falling behind?

We have been asking our members this question over the past six months and the answer is definitely NO. The average is around 2.4 on a 5 point scale and this session they voted 2.2 - that is less than 50%.

This was the final session at our Beach Retreat where a group representing three generations (Boomers, Get X and Millennials) and coming from all areas of the Profession - Industry, Public Practice, Outsource CFO, Government, Nonprofits and Education gathered to discuss how to thrive in the Fourth Industrial Revolution. They came up with some great insights that we can all learn from.

We started with a 'state of the accounting profession' overview of the hard trends facing our Profession I characterized as the three T's - Taxes (and regs and standards), Talent (demographics in the workforce), and Technology. These trends are predictable and everyone agrees that these waves of change are coming faster and getting bigger. The group said that their organizations were not moving fast enough (2.2 on a 5.0 scale). What does moving fast enough mean?

Here are some of their most common responses:

  • Challenging our paradigmatic assumptions about what accounting can look like
  • Getting rid of legacy processes and red tape
  • Communicate and adapt new processes/technology
  • Training & implementation time

Are you transforming or just tweaking things? To quote futurist and best-selling author, Daniel Burrus, "In the next five years we will TRANSFORM, not change,  how we market, sell , communicate, collaborate, innovate, and educate." Transformation is not incremental change. Transformation is doing different things, not doing things differently. Change is changing what is, transformation is creating what isn't.

The conversation quickly turned to tools and resources available to help our members ride these big waves of change.

Fortunately we had a group of our strategic sponsors on hand to offer us up help with two of the three hard trends - Talent and Technology.

Check out this Facebook live video where we feature our strategic sponsors we have been curating to help our members deal with these big waves of change. We shot this during the beach retreat session reaching another 470 people online.

Here they are in order of the presentations:

This group of our strategic partners — along with Kelly Payroll, AccountantsWorld, WoltersKluwer, Liscio,, MindBridge AI, and AON — will be at our CPA Summit on Dec. 6 and our upcoming town halls in the fall.


The group offered some final insights that can be captured in these three remarks:

'We are not as current as we thought!

'Our struggles are shared'

"MACPA is here to help me embrace the future to help me provide the highest benefit to all of my stakeholders"

Remember as Jon Kabbat-Zin once said, "You can't stop the waves, but you can learn how to surf."

At MACPA, we are committed to help you ride these big waves off change and thrive in the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

Surf's Up!

More Resources:

Thriving in an Age of Change - free webcast

Leadership Academy - August 15-17 in Towson

Artificial Intelligence in Accounting and Auditing Conference on December 5th in Towson

CPA Summit on December 6th at Towson Sheraton




Tom Hood