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GRIT, Redefined

SUSTAINING a career amid all the changes in our profession as well as the financial and economic landscape is a challenge for certified public accountants (CPAs) in public practice. With this in mind, the Association of CPAs in Public Practice (Acpapp) ushered the new year with its Theme for 2024: GRIT, Redefined.

We took the word GRIT, as it is, but redefined it to embody the ideals that are vital in driving us to success: Good Governance, Resilience, Integrity and Teamwork.

Good governance. Adapting to change requires adopting good governance. It provides a strong structure on which we anchor our decisions toward the interest of the organization and the public in general.

Resilience. More often, resilience is associated with emotional resilience. We have to be strong, and have faith and hope that we can conquer adversities. However, in order to operationalize grit, we also need to develop "operational resilience." This involves taking an inventory of our resources — human, financial, technological and intangible resources — and optimizing these resources in order to sustain our growth. We have to future-proof our systems and the way we do things. This also entails a continuous upgrade of our knowledge and skills, and the use of technology and utilize innovative tools to our advantage.

Integrity. In an uncertain and volatile world, the urge to succumb to the norm becomes convenient. But we are called to take the higher road and lead our team toward what is moral and ethical. We encourage one another to develop strength of character, courage and resolve, even when put under the flames.

Team work. As leaders of our own firms and as members of this organization, we are called to see to it that we all grow and develop as CPAs in public practice. Let us accept, respect and empower our staff and colleagues regardless of culture, geography, beliefs, economic status, gender preferences, and even physical and psychological conditions. With the change that the world underwent, perspectives also changed. We incorporate inclusivity and diversity in the environments that we operate in and as a team, embrace the beauty in diversity and work together in the achievement of our vision, mission and goals.

In line with this year's theme, we have the following programs in the agenda:

– Creation of a long-range planning board.

– Strengthening of the chapters.

– Institution of good governance as well as improving internal controls in our own organization's systems and processes.

– Continuous innovations in the various committees as well as the Acpapp Academy through trainings and focused group discussions in quality management, audit methodology, use of modern technology to improve our practice, ethics, emotional, mental and physical well-being, updates in regulations such as taxation, sustainability, leadership and other noteworthy topics which will serve as capacity-building tool kits for our members to become more resilient and empowered.

– Conduct of interactive general membership meetings, professional development activities, and out-of-the-box fellowship and corporate social responsibility activities to foster camaraderie and teamwork for our members.

– Optimization of Acpapp website as well as publication of relevant media articles as an avenue for keeping abreast with the latest activities and developments in our practice as well as the profession.

– Expanding to new chapters as a way of reaching out to more membership in the provinces in our advocacy of advancing public practice in the accountancy profession.

– Embodiment of ethical values and integrity in the conduct of our practice through information dissemination and "walking our talk" through best practice and ethical leadership.

According to Charles Darwin, "It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change."

And adapt to change we will. Together.

Bring it on, 2024!


Ma. Elma L. Ilagan-Ame is a sole proprietor of the M. I. Ame Accounting Office. She is the 2024 national president of the Association of Certified Public Accountants in Public Practice (Acpapp).

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