We have our fourth MAcc Applied Talk today during the lunch hour. It talks about business ethics, and Aaron Beam is the speaker, a founder and the first CFO of HealthSouth. Beam was sent to prison in 2003 because of the accounting fraud he made. He told us his life story associated with the accounting fraud, including the how he started HealthSouth, how and why he started the fraud, and how he faced the fraud. The key point of his speech is that people should be taught about business ethics and receive ethics training. One day in your life, you may encounter the same situation as Beam did. How will you choose between financial profit and ethics? Will you compromise to the pressure of management or insist on integrity? How would you make a decision at some certain point in the future?
I have these questions in my mind after the speech. I realize that it is easy to insist on integrity when you are not facing any problems. One may choose to commit fraud to release himself (herself) from high pressure of management or to meet expectation of his(her) colleagues. It will work for a short-time period, and one may look successful during that time. However, when the fraud is discovered, one’s life will be totally changed. The money one has earned will be gone, even the part he or she has earned through hard working. Individual’s reputation will be ruined, and never recover as it was. Could you imagine all of these? No one is willing to face this one day. Therefore, we should pay attention to our ethics formation from today and add it to the subconscious mind.
MAcc Applied Talk is my favorite element of my weekly life now. I am looking forward to listening to next speech soon.