Senior leaders at IMA® (Institute of Management Accountants) are continuing their thought leadership role in the region, with recent articles published in the news.

Russ Porter, CMA, CSCA, CPA, IMA CFO and senior vice president, was featured in an article published in Hello Zuidas, titled “The Best Way to Predict the Future Is to Create It.” 

In the article, Porter discussed the important role that management accountants play in helping their organizations both predict and prepare for the future. He notes: 

“We as financial professionals always try to look forward at what’s coming and anticipate the variety of futures that may exist in terms of the external and internal factors that might influence us. The best way to predict the future is to create it. That means helping our organizations create the future we want, but also preparing for what may go wrong or the opportunities that can present themselves. 

“That’s one of the key values of finance: studying what has happened, using it as a way to predict what will happen, and then prescribing to our companies what they should do to take advantage. And let’s not forget: our mission is to continue to expand our profession, and to do so, we have to keep our skills current to prepare for the future—for example with our CMA [Certified Management Accountant] certification.”

Porter also explained the importance of continuing education and the value of lifelong learning.

Alain Mulder, senior director, IMA Europe operations, pursued the theme of accounting education and the hot-button issue of sustainability with a recent article that appeared in The Accountant, titled “Sustainability Must Be an Integral Component of Accounting Education.” The article is based on Mulder’s observations and remarks from the EAA (European Accounting Association) Annual Congress, held in Norway on 11-13 May.

Mulder observed the urgency surrounding the matter of sustainability, writing, “Sustainability should be deeply embedded in the thinking of accountants, because we are concerned with the priorities and choices that have to be made in terms of business operations. Sustainability increasingly demands choices from every company, and it is our job to make the numerical analysis surrounding those choices: on what and why do we spend our money? Sustainability in the short and long term is key here.”

Mulder also recommended that students should learn about sustainability through case studies and then drew an important connection between the topic of sustainability and the issue of ethics, an important one for management accountants around the world.

“Incidentally, sustainability is not only related to climate, but also to social relationships,” Mulder wrote. “It's a way of judging. Evaluate a situation and come up with the right, responsible response. In other words, ethics. In the past, ethics in our industry was limited to fraud. But now ethics spreads to all capillaries of an organization. Ethics is realizing how your company affects society and taking responsibility for it.”

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