I Want The Industry Accountants On My Team To Possess These Qualities:

  1. Have strong GAAP knowledge and be able to apply it in various circumstances
  2. Adept at researching GAAP, using GAAP research tools, and drawing proper GAAP conclusions
  3. Strong mathematically
  4. Attain accuracy when preparing, reviewing and contributing
  5. Read and be familiar with their company’s 10-K and/or annual audited financials
  6. Understands all aspects of the monthly close calendar
  7. Understand how transactions impact each of the four financial statements (B/S, I/S, CF and ERF)
  8. Understand how information on a journal entry, reconciliation and roll-forward fit together
  9. Understand their company both operationally and economically
  10. Understand all of their areas of responsibility and have methods and intelligence to achieve excellent results
  11. Understands how a myriad of differing processes work
  12. Figure out ways that their companies can be more profitable
  13. Keep up with dynamic changes in the business (ex. if break a facility lease, know to write off the leasehold improvement)
  14. Driven to meet both individual and group objectives
  15. Listens well and understand what boss wants
  16. Anticipates well (what boss wants, when others are about to make a mistake, etc.) and takes effective action
  17. Aligned with corporate objectives
  18. Self motivated and driven for excellence
  19. Exercises critical thinking that unlocks solutions-oriented results
  20. Effectively drill down to figure things out
  21. Catch errors/inconsistencies that are obviously wrong or merit further review
  22. Problem solvers as they indentify the root causes of issues and correct them at the point of entry
  23. Not only identify reconciling items but also correct reconciling items on the GL
  24. Build relationships with many throughout their organizations
  25. Knows when to ask for help in challenging and new situations
  26. Bring important matters to their bosses attention timely
  27. Does not make certain decisions on their own. Knows when to kick the decision making up a notch to higher level personnel.
  28. Adept at leveraging resources (systems, people, etc.)
  29. Know who SMEs are and know when to consult SMEs
  30. Understands the role of FP&A, Tax and Internal Audit and collaborates effectively with these groups
  31. Effective at partnering with people to get things done
  32. Partners with IT or other applicable groups to develop better reporting
  33. Know exactly where inputs to their work products and come from and knows what do if data/reporting does not arrive on time
  34. Keeps the tax department in the loop when necessary
  35. Undeterred when collaborating with or procuring information from hard-to-approach people
  36. Empathetic but firm when explaining to ops personnel that they cannot accelerate revenue recognition and/or cannot capitalize an expense
  37. Approachable
  38. Have a positive attitude and are optimistic
  39. Add to group camaraderie
  40. Polished and communicates effectively with top execs (as he/she has the ability to summarize)
  41. Picks the correct battles- doesn’t back down on keys issues, but doesn’t sacrifice relationships for minor details.
  42. Don’t have to get their way but enjoy providing their perspective
  43. Holds others accountable when necessary
  44. Set boundaries – are not suckered into doing other people’s work
  45. Fun to brainstorm with
  46. Not drama queens
  47. They know what they know, and know what they don’t know
  48. Possesses a strong ethical core and will not bend rules
  49. Do not hoard information, transfers it to others as necessary
  50. Understands their SOX controls and properly evidences all of their SOX controls
  51. Error proofs spreadsheets and processes
  52. When give a task, they figure out how do it and add enhancements
  53. Whenever they review their bosses’ or co-workers’ work, they catch errors and/or suggest enhancements
  54. Can explain drivers of a variance (both budget vs. actual and actual vs. actual)
  55. Can make a strong business case, especially when new funding or additional resources are needed
  56. Enjoy continuously learning new things
  57. Embrace change when applicable
  58. Have resources/relationships outside work that he/she can call on
  59. Show up to work on time
  60. Shows up to meetings on time
  61. Consistent and consistently good
  62. Keeps confidential information confidential
  63. Their spreadsheets are easy to review (ex. well labeled and don’t value out formulas)
  64. On spreadsheets, they freeze the pains so that headers/titles don’t disappear before turning in spreadsheet
  65. On spreadsheets, utilize multiple validations (outside the print range)
  66. Save files in proper places
  67. Maintain the consistent folder/subfolder structure when saving files
  68. Always learning
  69. Tie out whenever applicable
  70. Thrive in most circumstances
  71. Effective note takers
  72. Willing to adjust on and change priorities when necessary
  73. Effectively utilize preparation and/or review checklists during preparation and review
  74. Understands the concept of completeness
  75. Organized and methodical
  76. Captures all adjusting entries in the GL, does not account for activity offline
  77. Uses proper labeling for new GL accounts\corrects misleading labels for existing GL accounts
  78. Does not net amounts that should be presented gross and does not gross up amounts that should be netted
  79. Make their co-workers better via teaching and communicating
  80. Pick up new concepts quickly, they only have to be shown once
  81. Learns from mistakes and does not repeat them
  82. Great at absorbing and handling review comments
  83. Never dive into the details until they understand the mission
  84. Obtains and assesses the right information before concluding
  85. Ability to effectively manage projects (effective project manager)
  86. Effective at change-control and UAT testing
  87. Promotable – lots of upside potential
  88. Proof-reads emails before sending
  89. Sends clear and concise emails
  90. Attaches the correct attachments to email
  91. When communicating, they don’t over utilize email – uses an effective mix of email, phone, live, and video conferencing when communicating
  92. Gets requests for information out early and follows up as necessary
  93. Effective story tellers including providing the applicable context
  94. Understands the role of the external auditors
  95. Never sends anything to auditors without validating accuracy
  96. Does not schedule vacations or call in sick during critical times when I need them
  97. Continuously grows in leadership qualities
  98. Exercises reasonable judgment in grey areas
  99. Develops a risk radar
  100. Never compromises faith and family
  101. Has read “The Industry Accountant’s Intelligence Briefing” (see www.pm4secr.com).

We want our industry accountants to possess a myriad of key skills and qualities. The book most aligned with developing/enhancing these qualities is “The Industry Accountant’s Intelligence Briefing”.


See www.pm4secr.com

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