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November 29, 2022

Accounting Culture

Audit Room Etiquette: Three Faux Pas That Make Your Co-workers Hate You

Since we marked the countdown to the first SEC deadline of busy season yesterday, let’s tackle an important issue.

Sitting in close proximity of the same people day after day, night after night tends to wear on a person (and if you happen to be sleeping with them, it’s worse).

You start noticing the most mundane, yet painfully annoying habits of your fellow auditors and they can drive you up the boringly-beige wall. Pretty soon, assault and battery seems like your only course of action. We ask that you refrain from beat downs (it’s just not considered good professional to batter your co-workers these days), but it is, of course, your God-given right to gripe about it and share your gripes behind the offending co-workers’ back.

But before you get too high and mighty, are you absolutely sure you’re not one of the annoying ones? We consulted another former audit room survivor, DWB, and no one is immune. In order to make you more aware of your personal, er, shortcomings, we’ve assembled this handly list of the most common bad habits that occur in the audit room:

Eating – You either eat food that makes the entire room reek or you happen to simultaneously masticate and opine on recent accounting developments. Trying to burp quietly is an act in futility and don’t react to your food like it’s sexually stimulating (even if it is). All of these make you terrible to be around.


Personal phone calls – You know that guy that takes three phone calls from his girlfriend every single day at the exact same time? Or you happen to call your mother every day to shoot the breeze for 45 minutes. Oh, that’s you? Well, not only are you shamefully whipped and/or dependent you’re annoying the hell out of everyone else within earshot.

Humming, whistling and/or singing – For the love of God, why on Earth is necessary to audibly hum a tune that you’re making up in your head? Furthermore, why would you put words to it? You’re an auditor, not Andrew Lloyd Webber. (And no, it’s not OK if the tune is actually one of Mr Lloyd Webber’s compositions – actually that might be worse.)

Now for those of you that simply think that a set of headphones will solve all these problems, we regret to inform you you’re gravely mistaken. Once these habits have saturated a person’s psyche, any movement, otherwise normal, will amplify the inner wrath to deistic proportions.

The above list is by no means all-inclusive and we’ll admit that our tolerance for bad human behavior is lower than most but the issue is important enough to warrant discussion and possible solutions.

Is Accounting Fraud Coming to Broadway?

samuel-west.jpgIt goes without saying that the lack of stage and screen productions of anything related to accounting is no accident.
We Americans crave the spoon-fed Hollywood experience and don’t have much patience for cerebral art. The Brits, on the other hand, have decided that accounting fraud is truly meant for the stage because Enron will start showing at the Royal Court Theatre on September 7th and run through November 7th, according to the Theatre’s website. skilling_tie1.jpg
Get the details, after the jump


The comedic tragedy stars Samuel West as Jeff Skilling and it has gotten excellent reviews in previews, indicating that they avoided the accounting aspects completely.
No word on the whether the play will make its way to the States but if it did we’d suggest James Gandolfini as Skilling, merely for the crucial scene where Skilling has a vein pop out of his forehead when he blows a gasket on an earnings call with skeptical analysts. We’d pull for Hugh Jackman as the Arthur Andersen partner but we’re guessing that it would end up being Philip Seymour Hoffman.
Discuss your casting choices in the comments and if you’re in London, you can see the play for as cheap as ten quid so go get yourself some culture.
Enron…The Play [Bruce Carton/Compliance Week]