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September 30, 2023

Accounting News Roundup: Flexible Schedules, Goodwill and Gossipy Bosses | 01.27.17

Flexible schedules

Here's a story of Friedman, a smaller mid-size firm, going all in on workplace flexibility. They're calling it the "Alternative Work Arrangement" program and it sounds pretty good, actually. Here's a summary of the policies from Accounting Today

Under the new AWA program, professionals can now apply for reduced hours, remote work/work from home, and "non-core hours" granted they are available to work the firm's new common core hours between 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Furthermore, “busy season” weekend hours – between January and April – will no longer be considered mandatory, and based rather on individual schedules and client needs.

The firm says that the new program is meant to "eliminate the mystery surrounding flexible work hours and scheduling." It sounds simple enough; anyone can work when and how how they want as long as they're available from 10 to 4. I take that to mean that you can come in at 7 am one day and 10 am the next, working from home or wherever you like and check out at 4 everyday except for maybe that one day a week that you have to log time until 7. And, as Rachel Andujar noted earlier this week, not making Saturdays mandatory is obviously a good thing.

My only thing is — why do you have to apply? I can understand applying for reduced hours, in case that means not working on Fridays or Mondays or whatever, but the remote or non-core hours feels like something anyone should be able to do at any time. Hey, if it's a no-hassle application, then that's fine, but if it's like getting Top Secret security clearance, then that seems a little…exceptional. Anyway, good luck Friedman people. Hope it works for you.


If you pine for FASB technical updates, then you probably saw the new rules that supposedly simplify the test of goodwill impairment. CFO Journal notes that the new rules eliminate the second step in the impairment test — "a second quantitative test to measure the implied fair value" — to speed things up. Whether it really results in simplification will be probably be a matter of debate.

Gossipy bosses

The Harvard Business Review gets all clinical on having a gossipy boss and I have to say, it is a little concerning when a superior talks shit about people behind their back. Now, not all "gossip" is "talking shit," but the HBR piece opens as if it's focusing on the latter:

It’s a given that you want your boss’s trust. But what if your boss shares things he shouldn’t, trusting that you will be more discreet than he? Maybe he tells you information you shouldn’t know about your peers. Or he gossips about people in other departments. What should you do when your boss is indiscreet? Is there a way to call out unprofessional comments and behavior without risking your relationship — or your job? At what point should you involve your boss’s boss or HR?

Character assassination is just that — tearing people down, and not worth your time, but the article allows for those situations when "information is currency." In those situations, you hope you have a gossipy boss. Knowledge of circumstances within a company can be crucial for decision-making. If you think you're above it all, then you're actively putting yourself at a disadvantage to those people who are not self-righteous when it comes to gossip.

Previously, on Going Concern…

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