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December 2011/January 2012

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One hundred years…

This issue marks the beginning of what is certainly a watershed period for the Accountancy SA journal. 100 years of publishing information that matters to the CA(SA).

It started as a four page information brochure for a small group of members, and has over the years evolved into an integral part of the Institute’s communication to members. It has reflected on the changes and developments in the profession, and quite literally today reflects the changing face of the profession, which has moved away from simply being a technical mass of information to providing members with critical thought leadership issues perhaps neglected in the past. These issues we lightly refer to as soft skills, but it is these issues that we’ve learnt over the past few years, either drive or hinder success and make a significant impact beyond a company’s bottom line.

I stressed last month that we’ve enjoyed both high regard for the integrity with which we operate within the business world, and we’ve also experienced the opposite. But the fundamental concern for us has always been to manage well the responsibilities of business. On page 28, Deon Rossouw talks to and challenges his peers around the significantly new area of social ethics. Will it become a tick action or will it reflect the integrity of our professional members?

It is issues such as these that have seen the world of business undergo a tremendous shift, albeit that the foundations of business, such as sound financial management, have remained intact. The shift indicates that we can no longer afford to work in isolation of the political world, global economic trends, local politics, and an understanding that managing and leading well our most valuable resource, our people,  is critical. And, with this, transformational leadership is key.

Brand Pretorius started that conversation in our most recent issue, and in this issue, Nonkululeko Gobodo, SAICA’s first Black female CA(SA) takes that conversation forward as she guest edits our transformation special report on page 34.

SAICA has played an immensely significant role in ensuring that this profession begins to address the link between local political objectives, community development and business success, through numerous transformation initiatives. The CA Charter being one, and our Thuthuka project being our most focused and significant peer-to-peer transformational success.

To date, we’ve raised millions of rands which have helped more than 1700 students participating in the various Thuthuka programmes. And this year, we’re so proud to have the first Thuthuka students write and pass their final QE2 examinations.

And we started all of this before it was politically correct, or even charter driven. Chantyl Mulder, our Senior Executive: Transformation and Growth, together with her team, and together withal our amazing sponsors and members, have made these dreams of thousand of deserving young students come true.

I stand in awe of their work, their commitment and the profession’s urgency to transform this sector.

If you haven’t been involved personally, I urge you at least to find out more.

2012 is going to be a very good year for our profession. And I hope the first of our celebrations around transformation within our profession makes you feel proud to be a part of this culmination of our but introductory one hundred wonderful years.

Till next time.

Raina

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