Practice news February 2007

A&A

7 Ways to Keep Employees Focused, Committed to Change

Companies large and small spend millions of dollars each year in order to make change initiatives a success. And yet the results are frequently dismal—changes fail to achieve their objectives, and leaders are left wondering what went wrong. Managers blame change-phobic employees, and employees say leaders didn't manage the change effectively. If you're responsible for driving change, you find all the finger-pointing frustrating and, frankly, unhelpful. If only you could pinpoint where the failure originates, perhaps you could head it off at the pass.Here's some good news.
Practice

White Paper: 10 Reasons to Outsource Remote Data Protection

In today’s information-driven organizations, the costs to generate, keep available, manage and recover data are staggering. Many businesses today depend on 100 percent data availability to keep mission-critical functions operating. With the increasingly widespread reliance upon data, the costs of interrupted access to data or data losses could financially compromise an organization and, in some cases, leave it no room to recover. The price of downtime is just too steep. 
Practice Management

Clients Seek 2007's 'Dirty Dozen' Scams

The Internal Revenue Service’s release of its "Dirty Dozen", 12 of the most common – and blatant – tax scams offers tax preparers a most wanted list of don’ts and an opportunity to prepare themselves for customers seeking illegal means for lowering their tax liability.Firm owner Kent West, CPA/PFS, from Mooreland, Okla.
Practice Management

Accounting for Employee Health

When Canadian employees at PricewaterhouseCoopers get sick, they can call up a new internal website that offers help and an unusual personal invitation -- to walk into the CEO's office and talk confidentially about their health challenges, reports The Globe and Mail.PwC is not alone in its desire to be recognized as a leader in building a wellness into its culture. Conference Board of Canada surveys reveal that health information and promotion programs are quickly becoming important components of human resource strategies.
A&A

A Conversation With David Maister: The Preconditions For Strategy

Managers build their plans and strategies on the assumption that people in their firm are ready and willing to be team players, acting collectively to create or achieve something in the future.The truth, however, is that these attitudes cannot be assumed to exist. In fact, they may even be relatively scarce. In many firms - perhaps even most - these preconditions for strategy may not exist.It is hard to identify and create buy-in for what the firm should do if there is no strong sense of a mutual commitment and sense of group loyalty and cohesiveness.
A&A

6 Keys To Growing Your Company The Old-Fashioned Way

When the average joe thinks "big corporation," the images that spring to mind are primarily negative: backdating of stock options. . .fat cat CEOs who jet around in luxury while workers barely scrape by. . .huge mergers that spawn both big bonuses (for executives) and layoffs (for lower-level peons). . .companies reporting record profits while cutting employee health benefits. Watch the evening news and you'll see why so many people take such a grim view of the corporate world.
Practice Management

KPMG Tax Shelter Woes Continue

Big Four firm KPMG has received more setbacks in the firm's quest to clear its name of wrongdoing in the much-publicized tax shelter fraud scandal. Judge T. John Ward of the Federal District Court for the Eastern District of Texas ruled recently that Blips, the name of one of the tax shelters created, marketed, and sold by KPMG and the subject of ongoing legislation against 16 former KPMG employees, is not a legitimate tax shelter.Blips stands for Bond-Linked Issue Premium Structure.
Practice Management

J.H. Cohn Elects Four To Leadership Positions

J.H. Cohn LLP, the largest independent accounting and consulting firm in the Northeast, has announced the election of three partners and one principal to its senior leadership team. The Firm named Kimberly Brandley, CPA, Kelly O’Callaghan, CPA, and William D. Pidgeon, CPA, as partners, and Kelly Frank as a principal at the Firm.
A&A

CEOS Make ‘Strong Execution’ High Priority In 2007

As CEOs develop their growth strategies for 2007, a top priority focuses on the strong execution of all major business processes, according to the Grant Thornton LLP Survey of U.S. Business Leaders, 14th Edition. Almost two-thirds of respondents (63 percent) say they are putting more emphasis on strong execution today than a year ago. More than eight out of 10 (83 percent) survey respondents place the quality of execution throughout the organization among their top three priorities.
Practice

Study: Male Accountants Threatened By Women

Nine out of 10 male accountants believe they have been adversely affected by attempts to create a more favorable working environment for women in Europe, new research reveals. Recruitment specialists Careers in Audit found that many men working in the profession claimed that women were being promoted even if they do not deserve it. The resentment ran high despite 76 percent of male accountants backing the view that a "glass ceiling" still exists which prevents women from progressing.
Education & Careers

Most Workers Unhappy In Jobs

More than four out of five U.S.