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Will You Find Love This Busy Season?

The following post is republished from AccountingWEB, a source of accounting news, information, tips, tools, resources and insight — everything you need to help you prosper and enjoy the accounting profession.

Looking for love in all the wrong places? Many workers turn to the once taboo office pool in search of companionship, and the search appears to be paying off. More than a third of workers (37 percent) say they have dated someone they worked with over their career; 18 percent report dating co-workers at least twice in their career. Additionally, 30 percent report they went on to marry a person they dated in the office. This is according to CareerBuilder’s annual office romance survey of more than 3,900 workers. Of those who have dated in the workplace, one-in-ten say they have dated someone at work within the last year.

Some workers are dating those above them on the office ladder. When it comes to dating higher ups, women were more likely than men to date someone above them in their company’s hierarchy. One third of women said they have dated someone who holds a higher position in their organization; 20 percent of men report they have done the same.

“Workplace relationships no longer carry the stigma they once did, as 65 percent of workers said they aren’t keeping their romance a secret. However, it is the responsibility of the individuals to understand company policy and make sure they adhere to it,” said Rosemary Haefner, vice president of human resources at CareerBuilder. “Especially in this economy, workers are spending more time in the office, and the lines between working and socializing are being crossed. Workers need to keep it professional under all circumstances, though, to ensure that the quality of their work is not negatively impacted.”

Some workplace relationships may have their beginnings in current workplace crushes. Eight percent of workers currently work with someone whom they would like to date, with more men (11 percent) than women (4 percent) reporting they would like to do so.

Twelve percent of workers reported that their relationships started when they ran into each other outside of work. Some other situations where Cupid’s arrow flew between co-workers include:

• Happy hour
• Lunch
• Working late at the office
• Company holiday party
• Business trip

Haefner offers the following tips for workers who may want to spark a workplace romance:

Know your company’s policy on office dating: While some companies may have a formal policy, others may not have anything at all. Make sure both parties in the relationship are aware of potential rules or consequences.
Social media – office relationship friend or foe?: Before you start posting pictures and status updates about your newfound coupledom, it may be better to inform your co-workers or boss in person. That way, there is less chance for gossip or speculation.
Keep the relationship out of the office: Do your best to maintain professionalism and not let the dating issues affect your performance or others on the job.

The survey also showed the repercussions of workplace romance, with 6 percent of workers saying they have left a job due to an office romance.

Accountant Seeking Sexual Favors Rebuffed; Pelted with Flip-flops

Everyone, at some point in their life, has suffered the humiliation of making a move only to be rejected with extreme prejudice. As humbling as an experience as this is, being “showered with chappals” may be the greatest humiliation to be suffered by a man in pursuit of a woman we’ve ever heard. And naturally, this dolt was an accountant.

The woman had applied for a grant under the government’s Ashraya plan and she needed a certificate of caste to be submitted to the tahsildar. Initially Shivananda (32), the village accountant of Kavoor, refused to issue it since she originally hailed from Birur in Chikmagalur district. In the meantime, he had obtained her mobile number on the pretext of keeping her informed about the progress of the file.

But soon after, he reportedly started sending her obscene messages and later on started calling her again and again. He promised to get her a 5-cent land in Falnir in the heart of the city, provided she made some ‘adjustment’ with him. Not understanding the purport of ‘adjustment’ she sought clarification. At that point, he is said to have explicitly sought sexual favours from her.

So we envision the scenario this way: Village accountant-cum-idiot goes with, “Hey, this is an easily solvable problem but an adjustment needs to be made with me.” The woman, being completely confused, asks him to elaborate to which replies with the BJ hand gesture, or the old pointer finger through the fist routine. Then:

Declining to make any adjustment, she went home and complained to her husband, who sought help from Dalit organizations, who gathered proof by getting the messages he sent and calls made recorded. They set a trap for him and got the woman to ‘invite’ him home. When he arrived at the appointed time, he was caught hold of by the Dalit activists and handed over to the police.

But before doing that, many of them, men and women, beat him up with chappals several times over. Shivananda told the media that he had only come to check the house to verify and he had been framed. But he had no answer when asked if he had visited any other houses to verify the caste and also as why he was not carrying the relevant file when he came to visit the woman’s home.

Reactions welcome.


Is This a Picture From Last Night’s Ernst & Young Holiday Party?

Supposedly the picture at right was from last night’s E&Y festivus/”suck it, Andy Cuomo” party and we thought we’d share it with you to see if you recognize the scene.

Our tipster simply confirmed “EY Christmas Party: awkward sexual advances,” the former being in question, the latter, well, obv We employed some detection skills to help us determine if the pic is, in fact, from last night’s festivities. Here are a few clues that lead us to believe that this is a legit picture:

1. The lady is still wearing her ID badge – Lots of Big 4 types are hardly fashion conscious, so this oversight was probably fairly common last night.

2. Three dudes, three whites shirts – No tie on twinkle toes and the guy in the background is wearing khakis. Obviously not front office.

3. Talk to the Hand – Or alternatively, “Do not take my picture with this accountant who, sure as hell, isn’t Patrick Swayze.”

If you’ve got additional evidence to prove this picture as an authentic E&Y holiday rager action shot, (e.g. post-dance photo-op with Jim Turley) we’d love to see more pics. Or if you can provide more details to give it more context: a) What song were they dancing to? b) Was this serious dancing or twisting at Jack Rabbit Slims? c) Did everyone circle around or did a conga line ensue?

Any or all of these details would be helpful.

An ‘Appropriate Email Use’ Refresher May Be Needed for All Big 4 Firms in Ireland

Earlier today we brought up some less-than gentlemanly behavior going on at PwC Ireland. However, that wasn’t the first story of misuse of email coming from the Emerald Isle. You may recall a few bros at KPMG asking for some assistance winning a trip to Whistler, which was received with mixed reviews in the States.

Anyway! Now comes the story – courtesy of our sister from another mister, Dealbreaker – about another KPMG associate maybe not using the best judgment, sharing his plans for putting the moves on a special lady friend with his mate over firm email.

From: Ian [redacted]
Sent: 22 October 2010 10:24
To: John [redacted]
Subject: RE: Wed

Good night on wed man. Good old craic. Any luck with the ladies

Kind Regards,

Ian [redacted]

Financial Services Audit

2 Harbourmaster Place



From: John [redacted]
Sent: 22 October 2010 10:28
To: Ian [redacted]
Subject: RE: Wed

Was a very good night. Got very messy in the end. No luck with the ladies. Had my eyes on this one girl, [redacted]. Some piece of work. But bottled it in the end


From: Ian [redacted]
Sent: 22 October 2010 10:45
To: John [redacted]
Subject: RE: Wed

I know the one your talking about alright. Shes friends with one of my mates in my year. Seems like a nice girl. Gonna chance it next time


From: John [redacted]
Sent: 22 October 2010 11:24
To: Ian [redacted]
Subject: RE: Wed

Definiately going to stick the head in next time. Falling behind on this whole k score thing. Need to get on board. Shes top notch in fairness

What u reckon?


From: Ian [redacted]
Sent: 22 October 2010 11:40
To: John [redacted]
Subject: RE: Wed

Ya, sure go for it if you like her


From: John [redacted]
Sent: 22 October 2010 11:48
To: Ian [redacted]
Subject: RE: Wed

Alright next thurs, im gonna stick the head in. Just wait for the right moment. (When shes drunk) and she cant say no. Got this unreal technique for scoring aswel, called the whisper. I pretend im whispering in her ear and when shes not looking I just kiss her. The element of surprise throws then off and BOOM.


From: Ian [redacted]
Sent: 22 October 2010 12:04
To: [the girl]
Subject: Wed

Hey [girl],

Thought id give u the heads up about this chap John here. Think he has some serious plans for you


From: [everyone who was forwarded this]
To: [everyone they know]
Subject: read from the bottom up!!!

At Least One Grant Thornton Office Doesn’t Think It’s Too Early To Discuss Holiday Parties

From the mailbag, straight out of H-town:

Today, sept 1st, I got a save the date for the 2010 Christmas party. So yes GT Houston is having a Christmas party this year and apparently they are so excited about it, they wanted to let everyone know way in advance! Woot!

Is this some sort of retention tactic? Probably too little too late…..

Grant Thornton’s timing of this announcement is interesting on several counts. First, Christmaskuh was canceled by KPMG last year in early August. Since this is the first Holiday Ho down news we’ve received for any firm, this may be a good sign.

Second, our source’s suspicion is noted – is GT Houston employing a free booze morale booster here? Will the promise of catering, free hard liquor (at the very least beer and wine) and the opportunity for awkward sexual advances help rally that office back to indifference as opposed to downright morbidity? Oh and watch out for a certain PwC partner who might try to crash the party since he’ll likely be kept away from the booze at his own.

Discuss the early holiday cheer. And keep us informed about your firm’s/office’s holiday rager status.

A Friendly HR Reminder: The Workplace Is Not a Dating Service

Yes, your calendar is correct. Sir Caleb asked me to post on Whisky Wednesday. Fill up your glass, kick back in your chair, and let’s do this, shall we?

An area that I want to address is a topic that is otherwise whispered about or downright ignored by most engagement teams at accounting firms – dating in the workplace. For the purpose of this post, we’re going to let “dating” stand for anything from a one night stand to full fledge monogamous relationships. When done correctly and professionally, there is nothing wrong (from a legal or career perspective) with dating a co-worker. However – at least from my observations – the majority of cases do not fall under this description.

Sleepin’ your way to the top; shacking up with the enemy; earning an Encore award; shagging the secretary; deserving an early promo. Whatever you want to call it, getting drunk and hooking up with a coworker falls into a grey area. And by grey area, I mean the “what the hell were you thinking” area. I suggest treading lightly.

Why it happens – Birds and bees conversation aside, I’m talking about why so many accountants hook up with one another. On paper, it makes sense – similar backgrounds and interests, close and frequent exposure to one another, the lack of time to spend with others outside the office, and of course your campus recruiting department did a kick-ass job when “randomly” selecting resumés. Sure, your associate seems like a catch – but whom have you compared him/her to? Your manager? The mailroom staff? Security!? Come on. Your firm is not or the Casual Encounters section of Craigslist.

People talk – Newsflash of the day – your co-workers are a bunch of gossip mongers. Again, some of this is due to the “work is my life” mantra. Gossip flies around larger engagement teams when cliques are prevalent – do yourself a favor and head it off from the start of things – DON’T HOOK UP WITH SOMEONE FROM YOUR ENGAGEMENT TEAM. If you absolutely must “keep it in the accounting family,” try a different practice. (Didn’t you hear? Internal audit advisory services is saturated with hotties.) But really, avoid associating yourself with this kind of gossip. As time goes on and people get promoted and shuffled around, you never know who you’re going to be working with. Avoid the guaranteed awkwardness.

It can hurt your career – I’m not saying this is common, because it’s really not. It’s not ethical, but when it comes time for reviews, managers and partners are human. Non-work related factors – like sleeping your way around the block – can have an impact.

If you’re going to date someone from work…keep both of your careers in mind. Be honest with one another, and talk about things. A lot of factors can come into play – what practice lines you’re in, the possibility of working together, and long-term promotion paths are just a few. When marriage becomes a realistic possibility or you are unsure of how to proceed at any time, speak to someone in HR. They can help you better understand your firm’s HR policy and how it relates to your particular situation.

But for you horned up co-eds out there, listen up. Next time you’re out sipping the alcoholic Kool-aid at a partner sponsored “bonding event,” think twice before downing your drink remnants and hopping in a cab with the second year with the nice eyes. You’ll thank me the next morning when you don’t walk in wearing the same peach schnapps stained shirt you had on the night before.

Have a personal experience or bit of advice you want to share? Email me or comment below.

(UPDATE) PwC Houston Happy Hours Still May Not Be Safe

It’s been a couple of weeks since we reported on the alleged incident at a PwC happy hour that involved a drunk (or roofied, depending on who you ask) partner who made his fondness for an associate known only to follow it up with a knuckle sandwich (we’re picturing a right cross).

Well, we decided to check in with a source down in H-town to see if there was any blowback from this whole situation.

I heard that PwC wasn’t going to do anything because of his client relationship and only offered the guy the chance to get off the job.

Well! Not exactly what we expected hear and we decided to check things out. Through a friend of capable means, we were able to verify the partner’s employment with the firm.

So then we emailed PwC spokesman Jon Stoner again about the incident but we have yet to hear back. Then we called the partner-in-question and left him a voicemail, asking very nicely to call us back. So far, he hasn’t returned our call but there isn’t any evidence by his greeting that he has left the firm.

So…you can see the conundrum here. What are Houston assurance associates going to do if they can’t drink beer on company dime without fearing a punch in the mouth (and possible getting an unwanted tongue down their throat)? Spend their own money? God forbid. If you know more about this, get in touch.

UDPATE: Just a few more details to share with you – we’ve heard from multiple sources that there were multiple kissing incidents at the happy hour. So while it sounds like more love (albeit unwelcome) was being spread than violence, that doesn’t mean you should be risking the invasion of your personal space for a few cocktails.

Be Sure to Keep Your Guard Up at the Next PwC Happy Hour

We received a tip early last week that will could make you think twice about attending the next PricewaterhouseCoopers happy hour, or at the very least, keep your eyes open for the attendees that have clearly drank themselves blind.

Our original tipster told us the following, “You should look into a PwC male partner punching a male associate at a going away happy hour in Houston, TX. Allegedly, the story is the partner got drunk, walked up to the male associate and said “I know you want to kiss me” proceeded to kiss him on the lips and then pushed and punched him.”

Well! That sounds like a helluva party. We’ve heard of partners bullying other partners before but this is a new one.

Before we go any further, we should note that while we did learn the name of the partner in question, we’re withholding the name of the person at this time since we have yet to confirm the incident first-hand with an eyewitness to the events. If you were there and can confirm these events, including whether it was a left jab or round-house uppercut and whether it was a peck or a sloppy make out attempt, email us and tell us what you saw.

Okay. So, our source proceeded to tell us that the partner had been placed on the probation and didn’t acknowledge the event for several days saying, “he didn’t remember anything that happened because the engagement team brought drugs to the happy hour.” Fairly standard black-out excuse.

Anyway, we checked on this rumor with a source in PwC’s Houston office who told us the following:

A fellow associate of mine was at an audit happy hour last Friday and he said something along the lines of “things got really, really crazy.” And he wouldn’t tell me what he meant by “really really crazy.” I guessed table dancing / hooking up, but he said no, it wasn’t like that.

Luckily for all us, our source did end up talking to the witness and told us:

I talked to my friend — he could neither “confirm or deny the events” ; however, from talking to him, it sounds like the rumor is true. Per my friend, the “issues are still under investigation by the Firm.” So its all very hush hush evidently. The client is a high profile one, so I’m sure people are being very, very careful to not let the gossip spread if it all possible.

With all this, we thought we’d better call this partner up to see what’s what. We called the Houston office, requesting the partner in question (“PIQ”) and after a pause by the receptionist, we were connected. Expecting the typical partner buffer of an admin to answer, we were surprised when the he answered. We politely introduced ourselves and asked about “an incident that happened at a recent happy hour where your name came up.”

The PIQ immediately interrupted, “I’m not allowed to discuss anything about that. Thank you very much.” and promptly hung up the phone.

We tried getting in touch with PwC spokesman Jon Stoner to see what he knew about this alleged make out/fisticuffs situation but he has yet to return our phone calls or emails. If you’ve got more details on this story, get in touch with us and we’ll update the post if we hear anything more.

The Day After: KPMG and E&Y Holiday Party Report

Thumbnail image for HolidayParty.jpgWe were reminded that not only was E&Y FSO raging at a tourist trap last night, KPMG’s Financial Services practice was also tying one on at Jim Brady’s in the FiDi. This particular fiesta is the first major get-down we’ve heard of KPMG hosting so it’s good to know that there’s a little bit holiday cheer at every firm.
The Jim Brady’s party has been a popular event in the past and it’s a partner-free party so it’s a perfect opportunity for Klynveldians to blow off some steam, pants optional.
One source told us that it was well attended again this year despite being beer and wine only. We’re confident that was supplemented by flasks and other treats as another told us that the party was a “blast”. Safe to say that there was plenty of ass-grabbing as well as being an all-around bitch-about-KPMG fest.
Considering we haven’t heard a peep about E&Y’s get-down at TOTG, we can only assume that it was also epic.
Hopefully your cocktail flues have subsided to the point that you can tell us about the great night. If you remember anything, share the highlights or get in touch.