December 2016

December 28, 2016

On the Shoulders of Giants

As The IIA’s 75th year comes to a close, a gathering of its former leaders reflects the strong foundation on which the association was built. ​

​Nearly two dozen former IIA chairmen had traveled to the 75th anniversary International Conference in New York. Now they all were gathered in one room ahead of the night’s gala to celebrate the milestone moment. The interaction among so many former IIA leaders, decked out in tuxedos and evening dresses, gave the room an energy that was palpable.

As I mingled among the crowd renewing old acquaintances, it dawned on me not just that the room held close to 1,000 years of collective internal audit experience, but also that The IIA was built by these very people and their predecessors.…

December 19, 2016

Five Headlines from 2016 With Implications for Internal Audit

​As has become my custom as the year comes to a close, I reflect on the top five headlines or developments that I believe will continue to impact the profession long after we’ve rung in the New Year. For internal auditors around the world, 2016 should be remembered for dramatic changes to the risk landscape brought about by seismic and unanticipated events in politics and leaks of private data. It also should be remembered for changes that helped elevate the internal audit profession.

1. Brexit, Trump Victories Signal Changing Risk Landscape

The outcomes of the Brexit and U.S. presidential elections reflected deep dissatisfaction with government and a profound desire for change by a significant part of the voting public.…

December 12, 2016

The IIA Establishes an Advocacy “Beachhead” in Washington, D.C.

Starting this month, The IIA will have a full-time presence in Washington, D.C., with the hiring of our first director of government relations. This marks the first time in almost 45 years that The IIA will have an office presence outside of Florida. While The IIA has had a D.C.-based government relations firm since 2012, putting a face on The IIA will be invaluable to getting our message across to those who craft laws and regulations that impact internal auditing and to promoting the value the profession provides to business and government.

However, for this important development to be fruitful, The IIA must have a clear and compelling message to share with legislators.…

December 5, 2016

Should Internal Auditors Throw a Flag on Company Ethics?

In my previous blog post, I commented on the dangers of assigning human characteristics to organizations. Specifically, I argued that assigning traits to the organization instead of the individuals who operate it provides an easy excuse for discounting immoral behavior as aberration.

Indeed, an organization’s reputation for honesty is often used to shield or overlook inappropriate actions, but as internal auditors, we must not allow for such missteps to go unchallenged. Once the precedent is set, there is an expectation that small slip ups will be tolerated or rationalized, and that is the beginning of a dangerous and slippery slope.…