AICPA Council Meeting…Panel on Implications of Horizons 2025 on Young CPAs’ Careers

 On technology…

Gerardo Godinez, Business Assurance Senior Manager, Moss Adams, LLP – “I think technology is going to enable us to get to the point where’s no busy season.”

Advice to older CPAs…

Dan Griffiths, Co-Founder, Proficio Services Group says LinkedIn is “incredibly powerful” and is being “underutilized.” He advised firms to stop blocking staff from using it.

Micro-networking works well, says Gerardo Godinez, Business Assurance Senior Manager, Moss Adams, LLP. You can reach out to people in your specific niche rather than enter a room with 500 people.”

 On recruitment of top talent…

Kemberly Washington, Accounting Professor, Dillard University said a  valedictorian with a 4.0 GPA is working 80 hours a week, on weekends, for a Big Four firm. She said she believes professors should educate students about the realities of what to expect.

Dan Griffiths, Co-Founder, Proficio Services Group: “What’s not motivating to our generation is ‘pay your dues, put in your time and there’s this pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.’” He said meaning and purpose is more important than a paycheck.

On strategic planning…

Dan Griffiths, co-founder, Poficio Services Group: “If we were engaged in the process in the beginning, we’ll be more much flexible in implementing the strategy and making it work.”

On financial literacy…

Dan Griffiths, co-founder, Poficio Services Group: He said students are asked to go to the best schools, take on $100,00 in debt and then spend the next 35 years paying it off. “That narrative is broken,” he said, adding that the CPA profession is ‘uniquely positioned” to create awareness, get engaged and help on the issue.

On recruitment of young people…

“We need to do a better job of selling what we’re doing to the people coming into the profession.” — Dan Griffiths.  

On money…

Kemberly Washington, accounting professor, Dillard  University: “I decided to follow my passion and not a paycheck.”

On diversity…

Deetra Watson, audit manager, Blackman & Sloop CPAs, “We have to have diversity in education. They should be taught be someone who looks like them.”

Gerardo Godinez of Moss Adams LLP said he looked at the partners in his firm and thought, ‘I don’t identify with one single one of them,’ which sends a message that says “because I’m not like them, I may not be a partner here.” He adds, “No one ever said that explicitly but you can read into these things.”

Dan Griffiths, co-founder, Proficio Services Group: Empathy is a “gaping hole” in the strengths of the profession. It’s important to work with people with diverse backgrounds and understand where they’re coming from. “We’ve got to get more comfortable working with diversity.