March 2013

March 25, 2013

What Do They Think When They Hear We’re Coming?

Auditor: n) from the Anglo-French auditour — listener.

Are you a good listener? Funny how “auditor,” a word that started out as something so desirable, has come (for some) to evoke fear and dread — like “dentist.”

In my previous blog on “tone,” I wrote about perception and the written word. Today I’d like to revisit perception as it pertains to the way we present ourselves in person. I touched on this in a blog back in July 2012, but it bears repeating.

We are victims of the stereotypes we perpetuate. Mention the word “audit” to most people and their anxiety level will rise.…

March 18, 2013

Remembering One of the Unsung Heroes of Our Profession

There are times when I look back at the history of our organization and I’m awestruck. Today is one of those days. I reflect with gratitude on the individuals who were instrumental in The IIA’s evolution, and I believe all of us are humbled by the everlasting impact they’ve made on the internal audit profession and The IIA. One person, in particular, headed the pack.

Last Wednesday, John Harmon, executive vice president of The IIA (equivalent to the current title of CEO) from 1972 until 1978, passed away at the age of 89. John was one of the most formidable and influential figures in IIA history.…

March 13, 2013

Why Tone Is So Important for Internal Auditors

You’ve heard: “It’s not what you say, it’s how you say it.” Well, in internal auditing, I’d say it’s a combination of both. What we say in our audit reports most certainly matters. The reports must be clear, concise, and accurate. But it’s the way we communicate that will determine how our findings and recommendations are received — I call it “tone.”

Have you ever sent an email that others misread as harsh or curt? Early in my internal audit career, I actually had someone tell me, after reading a draft of an audit: “I agree with the recommendations, but I disagree with all of the findings.”…