Creativity in the workplace

Churchill Howard's Senior Business Manager, Graham Purcell, talks about whether there is a place for Accountants to use creativity

Creativity in the workplace

An artist.
A writer.
An accountant?

There’s a cracking book called ‘Accounting for Growth’ by Terry Smith. It has chapters such as: “Capitalisation of Costs” and “How to make an Expense into an Asset” – it contains plenty of examples of companies flattering their profits at the expense of the balance sheet. That is creative accounting – sometimes it’s legal, sometimes it isn’t. But probably not the best place to let your creative juices run wild.

In other areas though, even for finance professionals, you can unleash your inner Matisse.

Being able to produce compelling, engaging and standout pieces of work becomes important the further you progress your career. What makes you and your idea better than that of the next person?
Influencing stakeholders is important and continues to become more-so.

To win, your proposal doesn’t need to be twice as compelling as another – just marginally more-so: when it comes to horse racing, the winner only needs win by a nose and it scoops the whole prize pot – what’s your nose? Could it be that your offering just ‘felt’ better – a combination of you having confidence in your idea, putting it across looking the part, coupled with a sound justification?

Aristotle suggested a blend of the following to maximise your persuasion:
Ethos: a method for persuading a group of people by means of the credibility of the persuader, be it a prominent or experienced figure in the field.

Pathos: a method for persuading a group of people by offering a strong, emotional reaction (even a story) to an ardent request of this group.

Logos:  a method of influencing people with reason, utilising statistical data points (facts and figures).

A combination of the above coupled with compelling visual stimulus will stand you in pretty good stead to get your way in the world of business – without having to cook the books.

Author:

Graham Purcell
Churchill Howard – Senior Business Manager

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