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Going It Together

By Paul E. Juras, Ph.D., CMA, CSCA, CPA
March 1, 2021

When the reminder came up on my calendar to write this monthly column, I had to admit I couldn’t believe it was nearly March already. I was told my term as IMA® Chair would go by fast, but I guess I didn’t realize how quickly that would happen. The personal journey of being the volunteer leader of this great organization is an individual one—the part that goes fast. But what about going far?

 

Perhaps during these trying times, you’ve heard the expression “We’re all in this together.” How true, and it isn’t just in terms of the pandemic. Looking back since I became Chair in July 2020, I’m astonished by how much we’ve been able to accomplish over the past eight months, including:

 

  • In October 2020, we held two women’s leadership summits, one in Europe and another in the United States, both virtually. In Singapore, we held our first AsiaPac Conference, also virtually. In China, we held two in-person events for finance leaders, including our China Annual Conference in November. Our chapters and councils around the world also continue to host virtual events and are doing an amazing job at keeping IMA members informed and engaged.

 

  • In November, the Student Leadership Conference was held virtually for the first time and facilitated the involvement of students from around the world. It attracted more than 1,300 registrants from nearly 300 schools.

 

  • We published six research reports on timely topics, including robotic process automation, revenue management, profitability analytics, and the effect of COVID-19 on the finance function.

 

  • We developed an avalanche of new continuing professional education courses, webinars, podcasts, and other resources—many offered free of charge for members—to help keep members up to date with developments in accounting and finance.

 

  • We held the Business Strategy “Shark Tank” Challenge 2020 case competition in India, which brought together postgraduate students from across India.

 

  • The IMA Higher Education Endorsement Program grew, and we endorsed Morgan State University, our first among historically black colleges and universities. That’s just one example of IMA’s ongoing commitment in the area of diversity, equity, and inclusion.

 

  • We forged a new collaboration with CalCPA (California Society of Certified Public Accountants) to work on joint research projects, leadership education, and awareness building.

 

I encourage you to reach out to me if you have any suggestions for initiatives—or topics for research, subjects for continuing education, and more—that you’d like to take place over the next several months. I, and your IMA Global Board, invite your recommendations.

 

Yes, we’re all in this together, and together we can go far.

 

Paul E. Juras, Ph.D., CMA, CSCA, CPA, is the Jefferson Vander Wolk Chair of Management Accounting and Operational Performance at Babson College and Chair of the IMA Global Board of Directors. ­Follow him on LinkedIn, or Twitter, @pauljuras.
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