IMA Moments

Taking Time to Give Thanks

By Dennis Whitney, CMA, CFM, CAE
November 15, 2017

Hiker in the autumn forest with glorious sunlight

November is a month to be thankful. In the United States in November, we celebrate Thanksgiving—a holiday that was founded on the breaking of bread between our nation’s founders and the Native Americans in 1621. To celebrate this holiday, Americans take a step back from the hustle and bustle of our everyday lives to acknowledge what we are thankful for.


Today and always I am thankful for my family and my health—and also my job. In my role as senior vice president of certifications, exams, and content integration for ICMA® (Institute of Certified Management Accountants), I have the unique opportunity to help people in their career. From finance professionals beginning their journey to earn the CMA® (Certified Management Accountant) credential to those who are mid-career to those who are seasoned—helping people advance their career is something I’m very thankful for.


With its focus on the in-demand skills for the finance team, the CMA can change a person’s life. In our day-to-day roles at IMA® (Institute of Management Accountants), staff and volunteers interact with members who are directly impacted by the CMA. Being a CMA adds value to your organization because CMAs can explain the “why” behind the numbers, not just the “what.” And that can give you greater credibility, higher earning potential, and ultimately a seat at the leadership table.


One of the best parts of my job is getting an email from a member in Michigan, for example, saying how much the CMA has meant to her career or having someone come up to me when I am in Dubai and say the CMA changed his life, giving his family the means to live a comfortable life.


I’m also thankful for the opportunity to read members’ experiences with the CMA in the IMA Life column in Strategic Finance and the Inside IMA newsletter—it makes my job that much more meaningful to know the work we do at IMA impacts our members in such a meaningful way.


The CMA changes lives, and I’m thankful for having the opportunity to play a role in developing the leading management accounting credential in the world.


What are you most thankful for this holiday season?

Related reading:

IMA LIFE: Working Toward My CMA” — Strategic Finance

“The CMA Advantage: An Update”Strategic Finance

Where’s the Love? Why You Should Work to Ingrain Gratitude Into Your Company Culture” — Entrepreneur


Dennis Whitney, CMA, CFM, CAE, is senior VP, certification, exams, and content integration at IMA. You can reach him at
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