Blossoming And Maturing Of An Accountant


The last few years have heralded the transformation of the Accountant from a mere bean-counter to a solution provider. Numbers are for real and, to the user, they are either scent of opportunities or alarm bells for a lurking crisis. Under such a situation, the world has realized that the humble bookkeeper or accountant has grossly been underestimated and underutilized. By condemning him/her to a non-descript corner of the office and usually dwarfed by the heaps of paper and ledgers around them, the business has ignored and failed to tap into the huge volumes of data and insights that the numbers spit out from the books of account that the bookkeeper and accountant methodically puts in place.

The discipline that the virtuosity of good accounting demands drives the stature of and positioning of these dedicated soldiers. The tools that make the accounting process driven rather than people dependent, provides the humble accountant with the much needed time and expanse to provide the objectivity, analysis and decisions that the organizations demand of each and every relevant employee. Hence, it is critical to the organization’s success and stability, that the virtuous accountant be identified, nurtured and supported going forward. Similarly, the accountant needs to be more aggressive, curious and “thirsting for knowledge” in order to arm himself/herself to be future ready and relevant. The Blockchain, AI and ML of the world will cut out the monotony and repetition, but cannot take away the insights, judgment, decision making and customization that the empowered accountant provides. While reconciliations can be done through technology, the insights and customization can be done only through the human factor- the accountant !!

The improvement in the quality and integrity of data complemented by an incisive and decisive accountant provides business with the right weapon to focus on what matters most- customer centricity, profitability, compliance and scenario analysis. The CXOs and Directors who are equally concerned about Reputation of the business as much as the profitability, are comfortable and secure since “no corners have been cut” to arrive at the numbers.

This is Relevance in Deed, and everybody’s Success lies in making ALL Successful in the right way !!

THE NEED FOR A LIVING AND LEARNING ENTITY

Business is not a “one size fits all” proposition. Change, innovation, flexibility and agility are critical qualities that will allow it to navigate effectively and sustain in the long term. These aspects can only happen when the business ecosystem is continuously tracked, monitored, stress tested, and reported upon impartially. While these reviews ought to be data based and logical, adding a touch of empathy through strategic communication will provide the emotional connect with stakeholders. It provides the magic touch that galvanizes data, information and insights into action and execution.

Strategic planning and resource allocation makes the organization a living, agile, intelligent, learning entity where it is learns, imbibes and assimilates the signals and feelers the external environment throws up. Unable to do so will gradually make the business irrelevant and invite the history of POLAROID, NOKIA, BLACKBERRY etc to be repeated. The entity must not feel bad to admit its mistakes, but what really matters is the timing of the admission of such mistakes. A learning entity is one that has a deeply ingrained culture of professionally questioning the ecosystem and trying to seek the best way of doing things which would lead to profits, market share and sustainability. In this context, the need for business intelligence just cannot be under-estimated. Business Intelligence (BI) is a heady mix of Artificial Intelligence and Natural/Human Intelligence that is tempered with the overarching need to be profitable, responsible and sustainable. In the days of Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) considerations, every business decision must be driven through these considerations and by doing so the longevity and relevance of the business will be well served.

Insisting and institutionalizing this aspect in every business one works in, is Relevance In Deed !!

BUSINESS CONTINUITY, PROFITABILITY and SUSTAINABILITY

IF WE MORTALS HATE DYING, WHY SHOULD THE BUSINESS FEEL DIFFERENTLY

What is born has to die, is a truism for mortal life. But are we ready to accept this inevitability? While the answer is a resounding NO (all of us will want to live longer), it is the Entrepreneur who has the chance of living beyond the TIME through the business that he/she conceptualized, built and nurtured over time. It may not be wrong to assert that leaving behind a thriving, growing and learning business is one of the best service to humanity!!

The need for Business Continuity has never been felt as intensely as now in the COVID era, where the world economy will de-grow massively and there is despondency and uncertainty across the board. In these unprecedented times, survival is critical. Business Continuity, put simply, is an objective assessment of people, process, product and technology that will help/allow the entity to orchestrate, resonate and sustain seamlessly. Thinking through the present and brining into fruition an organization that is process and knowledge driven rather than people dependent, is what will drive continuity.

Profitability drives and motivates the ecosystem. Questioning costs for productivity and relevance is the hallmark of a progressive business that encourages innovation, value creation and quality. Global economic history proves that inadequate focus on profitability has brought an end to businesses that were considered as too big to fail. Being profitable and earning a profit are of paramount significance since that will finance innovation and survival. “A business not for profit” does not necessarily refer to a subsidized business or one that is designed to make a loss, BUT what it means is that the meager or marginal profits cannot be distributed as dividend among the stakeholders. The meager or marginal profit will spark creativity and innovation in the ecosystem and sustain the good work. Profit in a business is similar to the nourishment that a balanced diet provides to the human- whether fit or sick !!

Sustainability is the attribute that ensures businesses are not “fly by night operators”. Businesses represent dreams and aspirations of the stakeholders and to fail them is cruel. The entrepreneur is a visionary seeing ahead of the present and thus bears the responsibility of sustaining the business whether it be through expansion, acquisition, automation, funding, technology, portfolio shifts and similar measures. Environment plays a vital part in this equation and to undermine it, will be delaying the inevitable. Climate change and the aftermath demonstrates that if you respect Nature, it will sustain and nourish YOU in more ways than one. As the saying goes, IF YOU RESPECT TIME, TIME WILL RESPECT YOU !!

Every stakeholders involvement and dedication with the business, to see if there is a better way of doing things, will foster innovation, creativity, profit and sustenance. This attitude, attribute and pursuit is what is critical to success and underline Relevance In Deed !!

RESPONSIBILITY, ACCOUNTABILITY AND REPUTATION MANAGEMENT

Responsible business is what, we believe, will drive perceptions and valuation. Responsibility in business extends to and includes all stakeholders from the “Baby on board to the Director on Board” and covers “Start-ups to Grown-ups”. It drives accountability since every soul in the business are parts of the chain that connect and drive the various moving parts of the business. Any inconsistency in this highly integrated system, will lead to wastage, friction and collapse.

In these challenging times, Profitability is not merely numbers, but it stands for/reflects
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