June 23, 2018

PwC’s Recruiting Will Take a Hit Over the Oscars Debacle

Forty-two years ago I sat down to make an important life decision, my second in two years.  The first was to go to graduate school instead of accepting a commission in the Marine Corps. The second was to join Price Waterhouse. Marriage would come later.

I was the first in my family to go to college. I did well, and was aggressively recruited by the then-Big Eight and a few more firms. My final decision was between Price Waterhouse, now PwC, and McGladrey Hendrickson, now RSM. Arthur Andersen, which had developed a business model chasing blue-collar kids like me, came in third.

Like many students, I sought the advice of trusted professors. They told me that PW was the hardest firm in which to make partner, but that only increased the stature of the firm for me. My final decision to choose PW was based on the silliest of reasons. Because PW did the Oscars, my mother knew who they were, while my family knew nothing about the other firms.

There’s been a fair amount written about the brand damage that the firm will suffer, but I will reiterate: PwC has seriously damaged its brand with the Oscars fiasco. They won’t lose many clients over it; I doubt they’ll even lose the Oscars. Brian Cullinan has been humiliated, but will not be fired.

But somewhere tonight or tomorrow or next fall, some talented blue-collar kid is going to choose another firm and that is where the real damage will be done.

Paul Gillis PhD CPA, is a retired PwC partner who is currently a Professor at Peking University

Image: iStock/AntonioGuillem

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In Case You Need Another Reason to Hate the French

french flag.jpgWalking around the PwC office in Midtown Manhattan, our blogospondent in the field happened across a couple of young ladies having the picture taken in front of the P Dubya sign out front, proudly posing as if it was their names on the building at 300 Madison.
Said blogospondent approached the young ladies and asked if they worked at the P Dub and they responded in heavily French accents, “yes”. As result of further prying, it was revealed that the ladies do work a lot during “busy times”, sometimes between 50 and 60 hours a week!
This compared to an American tax associate who we spoke to just a couple days before who, in the last fifteen days, had worked 185 hours.
Let’s recap: America – 185 hours in 15 days in the middle of June vs. France – 50-60 hours in one week during the “busy time”.
American vitriol towards the French may now ensue.

PwC Needs a Lesson or Two in Spin

240px-PricewaterhouseCoopers.svg.pngIn, lets talk about anything but Satyam, PwC news, the largest Big 4 firm was rated highest among professional service providers on brand recognition in the Brand Finance Top 50 ranking of Best Brands of British Origin.
“Chairman of PwC [in the UK] Ian Powell said the recognition was ‘testament to the strength and reach of our clients, the talents of our people, and the contribution that we make to the wider community.'”
We won’t take anything away from PwC but sometimes bad news is the best news for brand recognition. So this whole Satyam thing is probably not getting the credit it deserves. Come on P. Dubs! Lemons into lemonade!

PwC most recognised professional services brand
[Accountancy Age]