Accounting Thought Leaders and Our Percolating Profession

Last week at the Midwest Accounting & Finance Showcase in Chicago, it was again terrific to discuss our accounting profession with many of today’s accounting thought leaders, such as: Gail Perry, Darren Root, Randy Johnston, Dan Hood, Kim Hogan and so many other smart-as-a-whip people.

Speaking about the changing profession with Russell Flagg, CEO of Flagg Management (who runs this conference and many others), we took a hard look at the crowd. Solid attendance, but a stark absence of accountants in their 20’s. As Mr. Flagg pointed out, though, “Perhaps these shows are ‘grayer’ than they used to be–but they’re attended by decision-makers.” True, very true.

Talking with Allan Koltin after his captivating “Current Trends in the Profession – Best Practices of High Achieving Firms and Partners,” was another highlight. The man has such a tight pulse on the state of today’s public accounting firm that it’s scary.

Martin S. Eichenbaum’s session on Wednesday morning was exceptionally interesting. Titled “The Global Economy: Risks and Opportunities for the U.S.,” Eichenbaum addressed the current economic state, supplying ammunition that CPAs can use when their clients ask about these matters. I felt like I was back in business school…and it felt damn good.

I could write all day about conversations, what I saw, what I heard, etc. With many firms now sailing into 2014’s budgeting waters, I encourage you to increase those budgets and commitments for out-of-town accounting conferences.

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