Feb 02, 2012

The More Things Change, the More They Do Not Stay the Same!

By Mike Colgan, PICPA Executive Director and CEO

Welcome to CPA Now, PICPA’s entree into the blogosphere!  The goal of CPA Now is to start a conversation with members on a wide range of technical, career, and business issues facing you in every stage of your career. Our bloggers (PICPA team members and others) will be provocative, providing commentary to elicit your interaction, which is a goal of mine as PICPA’s new CEO and executive director. We want to hear from you on issues that affect your ability to continue to be a successful professional.

As little as 15 years ago e-mail was considered cutting-edge, nobody had a blog. Today we have infinitely more opportunities to express our thoughts to one another – things change!

The pace of change exceeds anyone’s wildest imagination.

This video on change is over one year old, and the numbers continue to explode. Advancements in technology and shifts in demographics have been astounding. In the five months that I have been in my new position at the PICPA, I have had the pleasure of meeting hundreds of members, a few graduate accounting classes, legislative leaders, regulators with the State Board and Financial Accounting Foundation, and peers from AICPA and other state CPA societies. At every one of these interactions, there has been one constant – the pace of change! I have learned more about how CPAs are expanding their methods of providing value to their clients and businesses, and how the unprecedented rate of change in the profession is affecting how the PICPA is interacting with members. And to think, I have not even scratched the surface of the many opportunities I will have to continue to talk with members and others.

Professional changes include continued regulatory and standards explosion, such as registered tax return preparers, IFRS, convergence, private company standards, Act 32, tax and economic legislation, Dodd-Frank and the Consumer Financial Protection Agency, CGMA, 150-hour requirement – during a continuing slow economic that is impacting practices and businesses. PICPA changes, just in the past five months include a new CEO, headquarters relocation, new brand, logo, and value statement, new operating software, and staff reorganization due to technology (what else) advancements. The PICPA will be looking at other strategic, and sometimes conflicting, issues that will demand attention in the near future, such as succession planning for our more experienced members as our profession continues to age as well as he opportunities for more students, potential younger members, to pursue careers in accounting.  Many of these issues will be explored in future posts to CPA Now.

Some perceive change as good, some as bad. Regardless of how you view change, you always have to view it as an opportunity. It is an opportunity to look at a situation differently, and decide how that change can be turned into a positive outcome. I recently experienced what is probably one of the best changes that a person can have, and no, it was not my opportunity to lead the PICPA, although that is a close second. My first grandchild, Cooper, was born two months ago, and my world has changed in a very positive way!

How has your world changed in the past five months? Do the issues outlined above affect you in your role as a CPA? Let me know. If I do not hear from you don’t be surprised if you hear from me.

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Statements of fact and opinion are the authors’ responsibility alone and do not imply an opinion on the part of PICPA officers or members. The information contained in herein does not constitute accounting, legal, or professional advice. For professional advice, please engage or consult a qualified professional.