ACCA hosts a mentoring program for new members

Thursday, 7 June 2018 00:00 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

The role of the finance professional is changing, resulting in them having to play an essential role as a contributor to an organisation’s strategy, risk management and business performance and in being a business partner focusing on value creation and providing insights to support decision making. Therefore, along with having the necessary business acumen, being a good communicator and demonstrating leadership will be integral.

This calls for finance professionals today, to develop not only their ‘finance’ technical skills but also embrace certain ‘soft skills, such as leadership, team work and communication skills, all of which would make them more successful in their contribution to the organisations they serve.

Understanding the need for the development of these competencies, ACCA has always believed in the value of mentoring workshops that help harness the requisite skills amongst their members.

As such, ACCA Sri Lanka recently held a mentoring workshop for its new members titled “dream, focus, work, excel”. The keynote speaker for the program was Suren Rajakarier, Partner and Head of Audit and Assurance KPMG Sri Lanka and Vice Chairman of the Member Network Panel of ACCA Sri Lanka.

The program touched on the importance of the real value of investing in ourselves. Rajakarier said it was more about “not judging each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds that you plant” and assessing your current level of competencies, learning and gathering experience and the requisite soft skills to achieve the desired goals and results. Having a positive attitude, being a good communicator and being productive in all your activities were also outlined as key ingredients for success.

As part of being effective is knowing global trends he said, and noted nine global megatrends that are most salient to the future of governments. While they are highly interrelated, the megatrends can broadly be grouped into trends reflecting changes in the status and expectations of individuals, changes in the global economy and changes in the physical environment.

Furthermore, Rajakarier outlined four guiding principles to build a world class organisation through value-based leadership based on the book ‘Becoming the Best’ by Harry Jansen Kraemer.

The first comprised ‘Self-reflection’ that called upon reflecting on one’s actions daily, and in ensuring that your decisions and actions to align with your values.

The second principle was about ‘Balance’ to build positive relationships by seeing other people’s perspectives, whilst the third was in having ‘True self-confidence’ and identifying and respecting your strengths and values, understanding what motivates and energises you and  knowing where you excel and where you need help.

The fourth component was to have “Genuine humility,” respect others, listening to them and considering their ideas and advice. It also entailed in sharing credit generously, and in publicly recognising the good work of others.

Rajakarier also discussed some of the top ethical issues that needed to be considered, such as conflict of interest, receiving inappropriate gifts, sexual harassment, unauthorised payments, divulging trade secrets and in utilising company assets for private use. He briefly discussed the provisions in the professional ethics code regarding the responsibilities of professional accountants under NOCLAR.

Commenting on this initiative, ACCA Sri Lanka Head Nilusha Ranasinghe said: “Our mentoring programs are a tailor-made learning process where it provides and offers our members real experience and working knowledge that cannot be gained from textbooks or the internet. Our goal is to share knowledge, develop skills and create business results for the organisations in which our members work. Along with our qualifications, we believe that our mentoring programs have contributed to the success of our members, making them highly valuable to employers in many industries both locally and globally.”