Check out this brutal honesty in CPA Journal today:
The message conveyed is that firms will work you to death with minimal pay increases, there is little long-term career pay-off for the majority of new hires, and the work is mundane and boring.
OK, context. The article “What Can the Profession Do?” is predominantly about the profession’s diversity problem and how despite “decades of effort” to diversify accounting programs and CPA firms, Black representation is still low. Great topic and they did a great job laying it all out but should you scroll down, you find a criticism of the overall messaging that deters not only Black students but, well, everyone (see also: Research: Why Students — Particularly Diverse Ones — Aren’t Pursuing Accounting). By “messaging” they mean all the negative things accountants talk about on the internet like “I feel so trapped. I worked so hard in college to still not be able to afford to live comfortably. I hate my job” and “I had a manager last year who had a nervous breakdown and was hospitalized, but was back at work after a week to keep the partner happy and he’s on his way towards another breakdown. It’s not normal.”
TLDR kids are hearing horror stories about accounting on social media and it’s scaring them away.
This is exactly what was said about messaging:
And what if the messaging has some truth to it? What if TB4A has 665,000 followers because the memes are relatable and painfully accurate? There are 428,000 members of the AICPA (as of 2020) which means TB4A beats them out in followers by 237,000 people. What does that say?
Messaging is not the problem. Stop blaming the messengers.
accounting doesn’t have a “marketing” problem— TB4A.com (@TheBig4Tweets) November 30, 2023
it has a “salary that doesn’t match the hours worked compared to other majors” problem