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California Accountant Had Some Ambitious Career Goals

Many of you probably consider yourself to be ambitious. You have aspirations of riches and success in the field of accounting that the likes of Arthur Andersen dared not dream of. You’re a game changer. The profession won’t be the same after you’re done with it.

But Yasith Chhun of Long Beach, CA could not be satisfied with simple pleasures like titles such as Partner or CFO and fabulous wealth simply would not be enough. His life goals were far more lofty than a simple title, salary or home with a three-car garage on a golf course. This was about a revolution!

A California accountant was sentenced to life in prison Tuesday in Los Angeles for orchestrating a failed attempt to overthrow the Cambodian government in 2000.

Yasith Chhun, of Long Beach, was found guilty in 2008 of three counts of conspiracy and one count of engaging in a military expedition against a nation with which the United States is at peace.

Chhun is a U.S. citizen of Cambodian descent who helped lead a handful of rebel fighters in an attack of government buildings in the country’s capital of Phnom Penh. Three of the fighters were killed, and several police and military officers were injured.

Prosecutors said Chhun planned the coup over two years, traveled to the region to assemble a rebel force and held fundraisers for the operation.

So unless you’re willing to engage in guerrilla tactics in order to topple an entire nation that’s friendly with the U.S., we don’t ever want to hear about your career path.

Calif. man in attempted Cambodian coup gets prison [AP]

Is Becoming Your Own Boss the Next Move?

aspirations.jpgStarting your own firm might seem like a tall order but with all the uncertainty out there many people are giving more thought to putting them their name in the window.
And plenty of people are leaving on their own after several years working for a large public accounting firm and/or working in-house once they realize that they don’t want to wait to be the boss.

Web CPA addressed this a while back and it seems there are lots of reasons that younger CPAs consider the move:

“What I have learned is that audit risk keeps increasing while fees don’t and that tax practices keep facing more competition from home tax-prep software,” said Vuchnich, 31, a sole practitioner in Charlotte, N.C. “When I made the leap it was because I didn’t want to spend years working for a firm to buy into a service industry that is high-risk, low-reward, or where my services would be regularly compared to a $40 software package.”

Jody Padar, 37, left her position of four years at a midsized firm after feeling management saw her as just a stay-at-home mom with a part-time tax job. “The sacrifices I was making to be a competent, exceptional professional were never appreciated. So I left.”

The other possibility is that maybe you have your own ideas on how a firm should be run. There is no shortage of opinions on processes and how a firm should be run so some see that as an the opportunity:

“Young professionals will leave if they feel that they can innovate better than their firm and ‘do’ CPA work in a better way. This may be as a free agent, or it may be as a solo practitioner.”

The other option is that you come from a long line of CPAs and it’s your turn to take over the family business. While the mere idea of working with family members may be enough to give some of you an aneurysm, for others it’s an easy way to get into an established firm.

So is being the boss in your future? Judging by the response to our partner track poll, it’s a goal for many of you but going out on your own to get there is a whole other ball game. Discuss your thoughts and for those that have made the leap, share your experiences and shell out some advice for those looking to make the move.

Becoming your own boss [Web CPA]