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State Board Report

November 2012

People coming into the accounting profession are learning differently and communicating differently than their predecessors, Anton Colella, Chief Executive of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland told NASBA’s Fifth International Conference, which commenced on the third day of the Annual Meeting in Orlando.

“People do not want to be auditors. They want to get out of audit as fast as possible. I think this is one of the biggest challenges we face,” he observed. He also pointed out that at the same time investors are asking for more information in financial reports, the average attention span of people is worsening.

Mr. Colella, who also is chair of the Global Accounting Alliance, which represents 800,000 accountants, said that while he believes global accounting standards are inevitable, he does not believe there will be homogenization of the profession. “I believe strongly in national institutes. They are part of the heart and soul of the profession.” Mr. Colella believes more needs to be done to ensure lifelong devotion to the profession. He advocates having new accountants making a pledge to the profession that keeps it in the front of their mind and affects their behavior.

“I believe as regulators and institutes we need to find a way of capturing the hearts and souls of the young ones,” Mr. Colella said. The ICAS has instituted an oath that all CAs stand up and say in solidarity when a new group of CAs qualify.

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