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January 30, 2023

CPA’s Story of Quitting His Crappy Job Harkens to a Simpler Time When We Didn’t Have to Endure Verbose, Self-Absorbed Emails

Brian Dettmering is a CPA in Milwaukee that's been in the game for 30 years. These days he has his own practice, Riverwest Accounting Services that he operates out of his home. He pretty much works when he wants and takes the clients that he wants. You get the sense that he's happy with his career choices. Urban Milwaukee quotes him, “I enjoy the sanity of numbers, the logic of numbers.” Sanity and logic, as we know, don't always apply to the humans and that's the primary reason Dettmering got into business for himself: 

His move to start his own business came about primarily due to the impersonal style of the boss at the small accounting firm where he worked in the late 1990’s.  His boss would have his underlings talk to customers, rather than doing it himself.  “One tax season,” Dettmering says, “the boss fired someone by leaving a note on their desk.”  That did it.

Much like today's public accounting ship-jumpers, Dettmering thought it would be appropriate to say farewell to his boss through written communication: 

 [H]e gave notice to the boss by leaving a note on his desk, with just two words: “I’m leaving.”

It doesn't quite have the theatrics of going out for cigarettes with no intention of returning, but it reminds us of a simpler time. A time when colleagues would simply quit without forcing anyone to endure a 3,000-word email that included anecdotes from every engagement they worked, every country they visited, and a passive-aggressive shout-out to the dick that threw them under bus that one time…who, incidentally, is pretty much to blame for ending their career at the firm. 

You'd do well to consider brevity like Dettmering's when it's time to leave your own firm.

The Singing Accountant [UM] 


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