Next-gen leaders step up
The next generation of CPAs are taking their place in the profession and the community at large, as evidenced by the AICPA's announcement of the graduates of their 2016 Leadership Academy. The Class of 2016 included 37 outstanding CPAs nominated by their firms around the country, who took part in an intensive four-day training program at the AICPA earlier this month.
Among them was MACPA member Steven Kurinsky of DeLeon and Stang, a firm that is no stranger to leadership, with firm co-founder Allen P. DeLeon having served as a past Chair of the MACPA, and as Chair of the Legislative Executive Committee.
Leaders Need Soft Skills and Technical Skills
The AICPA Leadership Academy, now in its 8th year, was developed for the AICPA by the Business Learning Institute. The program is led by MACPA CEO Tom Hood and BLI Thought Leader Gretchen Pisano, co-founder and CEO of the P.link Coaching Center for Excellence. BLI runs a broad portfolio of soft skills, strategic planning and leadership development training programs for corporations, CPA firms and State Societies of CPAs, and offers The Anticipatory Organization-Accounting and Finance program designed by leading futurist and Fortune 100 consultant Daniel Burrus which helps firms and individuals anticipate hard trends, maximize related opportunities, and avoid disruption in these fast-changing times.
The curriculum offered by the AICPA's Leadership Academy prepares its graduates to help address critical issues in the profession. The focus on leadership development supplements the ongoing technical training that is traditionally offered by firms. Study after study shows that soft skills development is as important as technical skills, particularly as CPAs in audit - who often become CFOs in business and industry - look to rise up to broader managerial and leadership roles; see, e.g. What's More Important: Technical Ability or Soft Skills? (CGMA Magazine, featuring the most recent EY DNA of the CFO study), CFOs Seek Finance Professionals with Hard and Soft Skills (Robert Half), The No. 1 Job of a Leader (Tom Hood, BLI Blog), How Accounting Firms Can Diversify Their Leadership (Xero's Amy Vetter in AccountingToday), and Would Your CFO Pass the 'Barbeque Test'? (Globe & Mail).
Swearing-In of Maryland's Newly Licensed CPAs: October 20
Of course, the first step on the road to becoming a CPA, after graduating from college and locking in that first job, is passing the CPA exam. And in Maryland, we celebrate the accomplishment of our newest license holders at our annual Swearing-In ceremony. This year's event takes place from 6:00 - 8:30 pm on October 20 at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. The event will feature remarks from incoming AICPA Chair Kimberly Ellison-Taylor, Maryland State Board of Public Accountancy Chair Art Flach, and others. If your busy season started early and you realize you have not yet signed up for this popular event, register here. Watch for photos from the event on the MACPA's Facebook page.