Detroit

The Accounting Profession’s Lack of Diversity Is a Rodney Dangerfield Problem

If you’re like me, your eyes glaze over when firms start talking about “diversity initiatives.” Most of the time, they’re bullshit buzzword-filled discussions involving a white board and a “shout out your answers!” brainstorming session led by a white guy in a skinny tie who wouldn’t know diversity if it punched him in the windpipe. […]

My Firm Holiday Party is a Teaching Moment For What Not to Do at a Firm Holiday Party

One year at my firm, we had a Christmas party at the nicest hotel in the city. I live in Detroit, so you know the hotel is nice because it has yet to be burned from the inside out by a band of petty arsonists. The firm paid for valet parking as a “Thanks-for-driving-into-Detroit-at-night!-We-don’t-want-anyone-to-stab-you-with-a-dull-and-poorly fashioned-shiv-in-the-parking-garage-out-back-because-we-need-you-to-work-this-weekend-and-we-know-your-health-insurance-sucks” […]

The Millionaire Matchmaker: How Recruiting and Online Dating Are Basically the Same Thing

For somebody who’s been through the pain of a recruiting fair or the very real horror of a blind date with a man whose parents are probably first cousins, job hunting and dating can feel like one in the same. The chase. The long-term relationship. The rejection. The disenchantment. Here are a few similarities that I’ve discovered during my hunt for a job and my hunt for a date:

Career Limiting Moves: A Beginner’s Guide

I’m a little rough around the edges because – Detroit. However, I – like every other fresh-faced A1 who has no idea what auditing a public company actually entails – once dreamt of the partner track. I pictured myself seven years down the line in a velvet-lined corner partner office with enough cash to buy […]

Detroit As Desperate For Accountants as It Is For Homeowners

We all know the job market is pretty darn fantastic if you've got an accounting degree, a remedial understanding of good hygiene, a button-up shirt or two and the social skills of a well-adjusted 7 year old. But in Detroit, the market is even hotter: The competition to hire CPAs in metro Detroit has heated […]

Just How Many CPA Roommates Can You Fit In a Single Apartment?

Ed. note: alert the sharks, there's new blood in the water! Awhile back, we put out a call for writers. Leona answered the call, was loved in Open Items and ambitious to get started on ruining her professional reputation by associating with us. Please give her a warm GC welcome, we'll have a proper bio […]

This Detroit CFO Probably Dresses Better Than Every CFO You’ve Ever Met

Cornell Batie, CFO at Mack Avenue Records, as he appeared in Hour Detroit's 2013 Best Dressed List:

Hiring (or Something) Watch: PwC Detroit

The Motor City edition of Papa Whiskey Charlie moved into their new "state-of-the-art facilities" in the downtown business district yesterday and everyone, including Mayor Dave Bing, was pretty excited about it: “This space had been empty for some time, and this is a key building in downtown Detroit,” Bing said following a ribbon cutting and […]

City of Detroit’s Finance Department Makes Case for Most Hysterically Pitiful Internal Control System in Recent Memory

There are plenty of examples of internal control systems that are, shall we say, miserably deficient. Koss is one example. Dixon, Illinois is another. Churches are victims, too. And there are many, many others. Let it be known that the City of Detroit shall be included as having one of the most contemptible control systems […]

PwC’s New ‘State-of-the-Art Facilities’ in Detroit Will Encourage Enhanced Collaboration, Observation of Awful Eating Habits

Never mind that "state-of-the-art" and "Detroit" don't often collide in the same sentence; what's important to note here is Managing Partner David Breen's description of the new "open floor plan": "We're building out the space to leverage the firm's new model of office design, which includes a modern and open floor plan to enhance team […]

Herman Cain Wants You to Try the New 9-9-9 Recipe

Godfather of gold ties and GOP Presidential candidate Herman Cain has taken a lot of heat for his 9-9-9 tax plan. While it has a nice ring to it, not too many people are crazy about 9-cubed including his fellow GOP hopefuls, their tax taskmaster Grover Norquist, and every tax wonk within the DC delivery area.

Sensing something needed to be changed, Cain got his economics advisor accountant and whomever else is crunching the numbers to go back to the drawing board. And what did they come up with, you ask? Are they throwing in free bread sticks? Fresher ingredients? A gluten-free crust stuffed with cheese? Nope! That would just cause more confusion, so they just dropped a nine:

For people living under the poverty line, “your plan isn’t 9-9-9, it’s 9-0-9,” Mr. Cain said in a policy speech in Detroit. “Say amen, y’all. If you are at or below the poverty line…then you don’t pay that middle 9” – i.e. the individual flat tax.

Mr. Cain’s bold 9-9-9 plan – which includes a 9% individual flat tax, a 9% business flat tax, and a 9% national sales tax – has helped vault him into the top tier of GOP presidential candidates.

But free bread sticks would still be nice.

Herman Cain Tweaks 9-9-9 Tax to Remove Flat Tax for Poorest Americans [WSJ]

Could Detroit Become One of Grant Thornton’s New Dynamic Clients?

Maybe! At this point, what harm would it do?

In Detroit, the largest city in [Michigan], the upcoming budgeting process carries an implicit threat: If local politicians can’t convince the state they have what it takes to repair the city’s finances, the state could appoint an outside official to do the job for them. The city has already hit several of the triggers to initiate the process that could install an emergency manager, say local politicians, who are scrambling to keep the city government out of receivership.

But would-be emergency managers say they can succeed where elected officials have failed. They stand to draw six-figure salaries from the local governments under their management, but some talk about this work as if it were a civic duty.

“We feel very strongly that not only is there a business opportunity here, but we want to be part of a solution for the greater good,” said Michael Imber, a principal in Grant Thornton LLP’s corporate advisory and restructuring services practice in New York. “We’re absolutely ready to help.”

Finance Professionals Eye Detroit And Other Strapped Michigan Cities For Emergency Manager Takeover [HP]

Deloitte’s New Motor City Digs Are ‘Cutting Edge’

How this didn’t get into the Super Bowl Commercial, I’ll never know.

Deloitte is moving from 160,000 square feet on nine floors of the 600 Tower into 100,000 to 110,000 square feet on six floors in the 200 Tower. The Detroit office employs about 1,000 people. Managing Partner Joseph Angileri said no downsizing of staff is involved.

“We’ve actually been hiring,” he said. “We’ve been in our current space since 1991, and the space is old and traditional and not conducive to the way we do work now. When half of your workforce only spends 20 percent of their time in the office, you don’t need to build the way you used to.

“It’s going to be an eye-opening environment. It will be really next generation, cutting edge.”

Build-out begins for Deloitte’s new space [Crain’s]

KPMG Detroit MIA from Free Press’s ‘Top Workplaces’ List

Disappointment.jpgWhen we learned that KPMG had been left off the Detroit Free Press’s list of Top Workplaces 2009, we thought that it had to be a mistake.
We’re so used to accounting firms being found on “Top Place to/for [enter anything about yourself here]” lists that we almost called up the DFP to demand a recount. Then we got to wondering what HR/Marketing did with the boilerplate email to be sent to employees? Just save the draft and said, “We’ll get ’em next year”?


Well, this is all very awk. Especially since PwC (dropped from the top spot last year, btw), Deloitte, and E&Y find themselves in #2, #3, and #4 on the list for large employers.
So far we haven’t been able to determine if KPMG Detroit has been on the list in years past (which at least makes them consistent) so maybe Motown has decided to pack it in. The firm makes every national “Best of” list but is omitted from your own city’s list? How do the local bigwigs spin that one?
We realize that we didn’t make the Best Workplaces list here in Detroit but we have made many national lists. You can all take comfort in knowing that KPMG is a great place to work in every city but ours.
Regardless of how seriously the firms take the “local” lists, for the other three firms to be listed and the Radio Station to be MIA makes for a big bowl of “how the hell do we explain this one?”. Especially when you consider the methodology: “The rankings are solely based on employee feedback.”
Look, we could sit here and speculate on the reasons why KPMG was left off the list but we’re better off leaving that to you. Discuss the Radio Station’s omission in the comments.
Alphabetical listing of Top Workplaces 2009 [DFP]
Large employers survive by encouraging inclusion [DFP]
Earlier: Rumor of the Day: Deloitte Snagging Chrysler Audit from KPMG?
Earlier: Chrysler Auditor Switcheroo Follow-up