For the last several days I have been in
All of the class participants work in industry and most of them had 10 or more years of experience managing finance and accounting for various companies. Some, but not all of them are certified by one of the major international accounting organizations such as The Institute of Certified Management Accountants. To maintain one’s certification, CPAs and Chartered Accountants (as they are sometimes called in other parts of the world) must receive regular continuing professional education. Though it varies by state, most CPAs in the
I have been teaching CPA continuing education courses off and on for 15 years and I can say I have never seen an entire group as motivated to learn and share their ideas as the class in
The topic of the course was cash flow forecasting, a topic that is critical in today’s tough times. During the course of the two day class, I was able to visit with each participant to better understand the challenges their companies face. Almost without exception, all wanted to see their companies increase revenues, have better access to bank loans, and have more stable customers that can pay within terms.
Sound familiar? Those three challenges are being repeated in companies all over the world in the same order.
One of my students works for an electricity delivery company. His biggest headache is getting the government of his country to pay for their electric use in less than 100 days. Though his average days of cash are good, he suffers a significant shortfall during the first week of each month when his two largest vendors are paid.
Another, the finance manager of an equity firm wanted to leave with ideas about how to consolidate cash flow forecasts for all his company’s investments so the firm’s management could better know how to respond to portfolio companies short of cash.
Still another, a senior finance manager for a company that owns hotels and resorts throughout the world reported that her company’s luxury hotels were experiencing increasing occupancy across the chain.
The students in my class came from the UAE,
If we could only channel the energy, enthusiasm and practical approach to problem solving that I saw during the two day course to the governments of our respective countries, we would have far fewer challenges in our economies today.