Accountingis one of the most fulfilling careers, but it is characterized bynumerous challenges. After serving as an accountant for severalyears, I have learned that the nature of work makes ethicalcompliance a major problem. I was brought up by parents who taught methat honesty is a basic principle of life and it should be observedin professional and social settings. The key factors (such as thedesire to achieve self-development and meet different people) thatmotivated me to pursue a career in accounting give me the zeal tofocus on addressing the numerous ethical challenges, instead ofquitting.
Similarto other accountants, I have faced situations in which I was requiredto misstate some financial transactions in order to protect myemployer from government authorizes or the shareholders. In one ofthe most memorable dilemmas, the company’s manager requested me torecord the whole amount of revenue for the pending contracts in thefinancial year ending in the month of December. Under the currentreporting standards, deals are supported to be signed on December 1(One month). The remaining amount of revenue is transferred to thenext fiscal year. However, I was requested to include the proceeds ofthe contracts signed in the last month of the financial period inorder to inflate the profits earned by the company. The managementteam wanted to receive recognition for boosting the growth of a realestate firm at a time when the industry was going through asignificant decline. In my case, I was promised a positive jobreview, if the fraudulent reporting would go unnoticed.
Iused two strategies to address dilemma. The first one was todetermine the potential impacts of unethical reporting. I learnedthat the transaction could increase my income following a positivejob review, but it could damage the image of the company, in case itwould be discovered. In the second strategy, I decided to get a pieceof advice from a mentor who has worked as an accountant for about twodecades. I knew that professional help was the only way to get me outof the dilemma. I was advised to utilize the whistleblower hotlineand report the matter to the company’s directors. Although themanager in charge of financial reported discovering that I am theonly person who could have provoked the top leadership to issue awarning in advance, it was a wise decision that protected thecompany’s image and my integrity.
Theaforementioned dilemma helped me realize that it will be difficultfor inexperienced accountants to advance their career without facingthe threat of litigation. This risk, coupled with the data showingthat over 70 % of the modern corporations are affected by cases offinancial fraud annually (Maurer, 2013) motivated me to go for ahigher level of education. I believe that pursuing an MBA program atRutgers University will help me acquire the knowledge as well as theskills that I need in order to address emerging challenges. Themaster’s degree will also empower me to contribute to the currentbody of knowledge on strategies that can be used to prevent corporatefrauds through research.
Inconclusion, corporate fraud has become a major challenge that limitsthe capacity of accountants to advance their career. Companies aremotivated by the desire to report higher revenues than their actualgains. In most cases junior members of staff engage in unethicalactivities after being forced by their bosses. Accountants cansafeguard their career by developing the skills that can help them toovercome pressure from their senior managers. In my case, a master’sdegree is a significant tool that will enable me to increase mycompetence and grow in a challenging work environment.
Maurer,R. (2013). Corporate fraud on the rise worldwide. Societyfor Human Resource Management.Retrieved January 2, 2016, fromhttps://www.shrm.org/about-shrm/Pages/Contact-Us.aspx