The CPA Journal, Feb 2022

By  Clement Chen, PhD, CPA, Sarah Garven, PhD, CPA, Keith T. Jones, PhD, CPA and Audrey N. Scarlata, PhD

The popular accountant stereotype portrays a person who lacks creativity, sitting alone crunching numbers. Those within the profession know that this portrayal is inaccurate and that the accounting profession encompasses a wide variety of skills, both technical and personal. What does the evolving face of accounting look like today, and how can we spread the right message about our profession? This article discusses the results and implications of a recently published academic study that compared leading career models’ portrayal of accounting to competing professions and provided evidence concerning the required level of skills needed in contemporary accounting work.

These outdated career models might be leading to a mismatch between the student’s skill set and goals, and the competencies required to be successful in accounting.

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