If there’s someone who knows about accounting stereotypes, it’s Matt DiRusso, KPMG tax associate and recent law school graduate. Not only did he witness and work with stereotypical accountants and CPAs over the last decade, but he also got to hear from his law school classmates and professors about their thoughts on accountants.

Matt is cut from a different cloth – a more entrepreneurial minded one – where he is always ambitiously looking to grow, gain new schools, make new connections, and be a true business developer. His tenure through audit and tax services at national and Big 4 public accounting firms has given him a tremendous amount of opportunity to see what goes on at clients, but also what goes on within the CPA business. He quickly realized that being just an accountant may be good for some who have goals of becoming a controller or a partner at a firm, but that even these individuals create a cap for themselves by refusing to pursue a wider array of skills.

When it comes to evolving, knowing how to communicate, lead, manage, speak with clients, and become more human (rather than robotic) are critical. As has been said for years now, people are the most important part of a business – not anything else. Not only do firms need to treat their people well, but the people need to be more personable too – which comes from leadership example. Encouraging and embracing change and pursuit of passion and ambitions beyond just spreadsheets are necessary for this transformation and evolution.

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