Accountant should learn from NASA
14 Jun 2012
Jan Bouwens, Professor of Accounting at TiasNimbas School, writes about preventing recklessness of accountants in Dutch daily het Financieele Dagblad. Research has shown that people who take risks – like the window cleaner, who climbs instable stairs every day – become more reckless when nothing severe happens. “How can we prevent that this happens to accountants as well?”, Prof. Bouwens wonders.
NASA has learned the hard way to prevent accidents with Space Shuttles by asking its employees about hazards they experience during their daily job and by critically analysing their ‘almost-accidents’. Accounting firms should follow their example.
“Firms must prevent that the accountant climbs unstable stairs, by leaving bad management untouched or tolerating unreliable administration. The ‘almost-accidents’ that come from an unstable basis of the audited company, should be noticed by the office as well”, says Prof. Bouwens.