Ask the Accounting Community

Share your story!

  • 1.  Share your story!

    Posted 05-15-2020 02:55 PM
      |   view attached
    Hi All,

    While we continue to practice social distancing, IMA remains optimistic and we look forward to the safe reopening of business, and life, here in the U.S. and globally. During times like these when so many of us are working remotely, it's easy to feel isolated. The IMA community is in this together.

    Together, connected, we are #strongertogether.

    We want to hear from you. Join the conversation and share how you're dealing with COVID-19. Tell us how you're doing or share a photo of your workstation, your "coworkers" or even a recent virtual meeting.

    Clay, my "coworker", seems to have perfect attendance at meetings - see the attachment!



    Jeff Thomson, CMA, CSCA, CAE
    President and CEO

  • 2.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 05-15-2020 03:25 PM
    Great picture, Jeff!

    Fortunately I work in the marketing industry and so we have been able to maintain operations remotely. Since I have been saving time not commuting, I have decided to do a full renovation of my kitchen, a lot of trial and error, but it's coming along nicely. My workstation is slowly being overran with home improvement tools and my co-workers tend to slack off quite a bit.

    Robert Rossetti, CMA
    Associate Director of Finance
    Philadelphia, PA
    United States

  • 3.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 05-20-2020 11:03 PM
      |   view attached
    I work in the software industry, so have worked from home for 20 years.  Not much change, work wise for me, but I miss traveling to clients and office meetings.  Attached is my co-worker - we decided it was Hawaiian shirt day in the office.....

    Catherine Long CMA
    Las Vegas NV

  • 4.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 05-21-2020 10:51 AM
    I started working on the first week of stay-at-home here in Texas.  It's been a transition to start a new career in consulting, juggle a new set of teammates, and to keep the "roommates" happy.  I'm loving the new job and the wonderful way they have allowed us to stay connected and feel like part of the team while working and onboarding remotely.  They have also pivoted from a very in-person approach to client work to a still personal but remote way of working.  It's had some challenges, but with a company intranet and group emails we have been able to reach out to our teams as well as others for advice and assistance!

    Dottie is my personal assistant - her favorite job duties are sitting next to me to watch for mistakes as the mouse moves across the screen, making sure my desk is clean by knocking everything off, and helping with emails by pouncing on the keyboard.  Currently I assume she's on her break - she and her brother are running around the house at top speed.

    Rachel Sullivan CMA
    Cedar Park TX
    United States

  • 5.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 05-21-2020 11:52 AM

    Dear Jeff,

    Thanks for the optimism. It's important that we make the best out of it and there are positive opportunities too. For a starter your new colleagues seem the be "the pick of the bunch". Compliments for the recruiting process. :-)

    Engagement with the wider Internet community is one of our organization's most important functions and the pandemic has forced us to take a fresh look at how we engage with our stakeholders. In pre-coronavirus days, we met with people at RIPE, roundtable and regional meetings, face-to-face training courses, member lunches, and by sending our staff to the events and meetings held by so many others in the industry and community. COVID-19 has changed how we do all this. To say our travel costs will come in under budget this year is probably something of an understatement :-) But removing the physical element of how we engage and educate does not reduce the need to do this. With this in mind, we're are experimenting with how online engagement can meet the shortfall in physical engagement, but we're also looking at how the current situation might change how we engage over the longer term.

    We've been able to organize a big virtual event last week (RIPE 80) and this went very well. Our philosophy is that we don't want to simply put a physical RIPE Meeting online but rather work to create a virtual event that engages an online audience and brings the community together in a unique and worthwhile way. Around 2,000 people attented RIPE 80, which is a record for a RIPE Meeting and the opportunity brought new people in who normally would not have been able to attend a physical RIPE Meeting and a lot of these newcomers asked great questions. This seemed easier somehow virtually, so that was a real positive surprise.

    Take care, enjoy the company! Clay is a beauty. 

    Kind rgs,

    Gwen van Berne

    Gwen Van Berne CMA
    Chief Financial Officer

  • 6.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 05-22-2020 11:32 AM

    Nice pup and comfortable looking office Jeff.

    I am dealing with this economic shutdown by getting in as much beach walking, bike riding, golf, kayaking, and other fun activities as possible. My office is really the outdoors, as I am newly retired. 

    Stay safe and well!


    James Horsch CMA, CFM, CAE

  • 7.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 05-23-2020 09:53 AM

    i am glad you are enjoying retired life in
    FL.  Plus your  hair blowing in the sea breezes makes it less obvious you need a haircut!

    Keep the posts coming!



    Jeff Thomson, CMA, CSCA, CAE
    President and CEO

  • 8.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 05-23-2020 09:25 AM


    Hair grows regardless of our work location, so in order to avoid looking like a shaggy dog (even your coworker Clay clearly is well groomed during this time), I enlisted the support of my wife Kathy, to give myself a haircut. Actually it turned out better than either one of us expected. I call it my Covid Cut! And don't worry I don't see this as something I want to continue after this is all over !   Stay healthy and safe everyone!

    C. S. Bud Kulesza CMA, CFM
    Austin TX
    United States

  • 9.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 05-23-2020 09:59 AM
    Thanks Bud, Kathy did a great job!

    In NJ, Clay the chocolate lab can get a haircut as that is considered an essential service but Jeff his "master" can't - not yet deemed essential or safe.

    Keep the posts coming, sharing stories and pics serves to uplift us all.


    Jeff Thomson, CMA, CSCA, CAE
    President and CEO

  • 10.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 05-31-2020 05:32 AM
    Hello Everybody,

    Hope you are all safe, I am Walid Amer from Cairo, Egypt. CMA since 2015 and planning for my CSCA, things were ok in Egypt but started to go bad for the past two weeks, I started to enjoy the lockdown as it is getting more healthy spending time with family, reading and workout most probably I will keep it that way after the lockdown is over ��.

    Don't leave yourself to boredom and stay busy all the time.

    Take care


  • 11.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 05-31-2020 11:24 AM
    Thanks, a lot Walid for your short but heartfelt story.  I hope you stay safe and healthy in Egypt.  I think it is wonderful how you are taking the opportunity to bond even more with your family, and, as a CMA studying for the CSCA!

    Good luck, I hope to "see you" when it is safe as I have visited Cairo several times over the years.


    Jeff Thomson, CMA, CSCA, CAE
    President and CEO

  • 12.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 05-24-2020 04:06 AM
    thank you  for giving me this opportunity to share my story
    I am Hisham from Yemen where it lif in continually war for 6 years and covid19 make it worse
    we life under hard circumstances and my mother has COPD disease and now  I make her under control and apply special terms for her to avoid with covid 19 infection

    Hisham Abdu
    Taiz Town

  • 13.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 05-24-2020 09:21 AM
    Hi everyone and greetings from San Diego!

    COVID19 has been hard on our community and country.  It's hardest on my little ones but they're troopers and both Mom and I try to do what we can in order to keep their spirits up.  My wife and I are a different story.  We understand and feel the need to socialize with other adults as well as just "get out of the house."  Nevertheless, our kids give us strength and my wife just started her first W-2 job today after emigrating to this country over 7 years ago.  I on the other hand haven't skipped a beat.  I continue to work remotely for all three of my jobs which has been a blessing albeit sometimes difficult trying to homeschool and work at the same time.

    One thing I've learned over this whole pandemic ordeal is that my employers and my clients have been extremely patient and understanding.  In my experience having that child being noisy in the background is now forgivable and tolerable (for a few seconds) whereas before I would be dying of embarrassment on the inside.  It goes to show that human-ness, that is, compassion an understanding still happens and I feel that we have been forced to slow down and be more methodical about our human interactions.

    Thanks for reading,
    Juventino Gaytan Jr., MBV, MAcc

    Juventino Gaytan MBV, MAcc
    JG Tax & Notary Services
    Chula Vista CA
    United States

  • 14.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 05-25-2020 07:35 PM
      |   view attached
    Home has became command-central for supporting my accounting classes "virtually" the rest of the Spring and Summer semester.  Versus getting stuck in my home office every day, I found it nice to mix things up and sometimes pick a cozy chair next to the fireplace on the chilly, dreary days.  A nice break between Zoom sessions!  And my students and colleagues get to see my IMA "uniform" some days also!

    Lisa Book CMA, CFM, CSCA
    Lecturer in Accounting
    Indiana University Southeast
    New Albany IN

  • 15.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 05-30-2020 10:37 PM
      |   view attached

    Hi, everyone!

    So I finally got into my first job ever and I was truly excited about everything. However, due to the pandemic and the community quarantine my city has been put into, I have never stepped even once in our office. Luckily for me, my deployment wasn't delayed at all so I get to work in the comforts of my home. I still have so much to learn and although I don't have any work experience to compare it into, I do think that this arrangement is partially harder than working onsite, given that the learning process regarding the work I have is remote and I can't just easily ask for help from people. I am still on the path of getting used to the field of employment and it is kind of a catch that I am trudging on this path by myself at home. I love and enjoy my job, though. I also feel that my company is truly supportive of everyone's working condition and only want nothing but the best for all of their constituents.

    I enjoyed reading some of the stories in this thread and I hope everyone continues to stay efficient despite the current situation we are all in. I find this is one of those rare chances that we get to truly see ourselves outside of the busy bubble we built around us and discover more of what composes us as a person. Our compassionate side may shine, our love and appreciation for our family may blossom and our care for the people who are not inside our circle may be emphasized. These are trying times and what I have learned the most is that I truly enjoy my own company. I used to fear being alone and messing things up if I constantly follow my own instincts. Now, I finally realized my potential can evolve more if I let myself believe in the leaps I can take.

    Take care and be safe, everyone.

    Venjovi Pondevida

  • 16.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 05-31-2020 11:27 AM

    Thank you so much for your warm smile and your uplifting message, including "Our compassionate side may shine, our love and appreciation for our family may blossom and our care for the people who are not inside our circle may be emphasized".  How touching, how true, how aspirational all at the same time.


    Jeff Thomson, CMA, CSCA, CAE
    President and CEO

  • 17.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 05-31-2020 04:50 PM

    How I am managing COVID-19

    By Babu I. Razack CMA, ACMA, D.Litt.

    Being a member of IMA , it is a great privilege and if you are a certified member, it adds you several hats on you. Again if you are doing volunteering activities with IMA, you would learn lot and guide our members a lot. My membership journey started in 2005 . Since then IMA has given me several hats like mentor, question writer, pilot tester,chapter leader, ethics committee member, leadership academy faculty committee member and so on. It made me to travel globally to attend annual conferences, regional conferences, in person meetings  in several corners of the globe and helped me to interact with global IMA community . The only thing I learned from IMA are perseverance, innovations and creativity , we can say three mantras of IMA. Last meeting was at Austin, Texas in early Feb, 2020, I went for COE in person meeting and leaving my wife at my daughter's place in New Jersey. I had to return immediately after the meeting to Kuwait where is my work place due to short leave. When I started landing the threat started here for COVID-19 ; at that time in USA I don't even hear about that . Then it spread the most parts of the USA rapidly, then I realized the mistake why I asked my wife to stay with my daughter for another two weeks. She is still there as she could not travel from there as the flights are cancelled to Kuwait since mid of March'20.  In Kuwait also COVID-19 cases started increasing, Govt. enforced partial curfew to full curfew; for the past 20 days full curfew was implemented which would prolong up to May '30 .

    What was my experience during this COVID-19

    1. Banks were remotely operating with limited inside staff and we had to adapt accordingly without backlog of our job which would require additional skills.
    2. Offices screens staff with thermal monitors
    3. We started wearing masks. Our office provided masks and keep social distancing.
    4. As there was curfew in the evening hours, we had to rush from the office to our houses.
    5. There was a long queue for shopping allowing to enter with proper screening
    6. During full curfew hours,we have to get appointment for shopping in advance.
    7. Yet here they care the people for walking few hours in the evening.

    Apart from this how I spent my time, I work from home even though it is bit of new experience managing people, messages , ERP systems, contacting other institutions like banks and audit firms only remotely. Yet we could achieve as many things.

    I attended lot of webinars, got certificates on e courses which are totally free offered by IMA and other educational institutions. I can say for example , Block Chain 101, Data Analytics and Visualization Fundamentals Certificate, Beyond the basics: Data Analytics and visualization for Accounting Professionals, Research Methodology etc.

    Thus we prove our ability as management accountants that  we can do better even during these hard times. That is the pride of IMA.

    Work from home

    Babu I.Razack, MBA,CMA,ACMA
    General Manager - Finance
    Ali Alghanim & Sons Co.
    Tel. +965 23970171
    Fax +965 23970180

  • 18.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 05-31-2020 06:14 PM
    First and foremost, Babu, I hope that you, your wife and daughter are safe and healthy.  Slowly, NJ/NY (which is the area where myself and the Montvale-based team work) is phasing back to the new normal as we have been at the epicenter of the pandemic for 2+ months.

    Your story is indeed one of perseverance and an innovative approach to solving real world problems.

    Thank you so much for sharing your story.


    Jeff Thomson, CMA, CSCA, CAE
    President and CEO

  • 19.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 06-04-2020 08:01 PM
      |   view attached
    Thank you for everyone showing off your furry coworkers! I will say the closest thing I have to a coworker at the moment is my Roomba. Fortunately, my coworker enjoys cleaning up messes as opposed to making any. Although sometimes I forget that I've set my Roomba and manage to trip over it. Fun times.

    COVID-19 has embarked an interesting chapter in my life. Prior to COVID-19, I was traveling all of the time for work, spending a significant portion of the year in a hotel, and eating unhealthy choices at restaurants (yes, I'll have dessert). Upon further reflection, this experience has allowed me to take a moment to pause and reflect on my well-being. In hindsight, prior to COVID-19, I had fallen off the "wellness wagon". With an awareness that being "safer from home" would be in the long-term plan for 2020, I made a commitment to wellness with a few wellness investments. I bought a new bed (because I was used to hotel beds). I bought a treadmill, which ironically resides in front of my television. Nothing says weight loss motivation than watching the entire Marvel series in chronological order from the comfort of a treadmill. I also purchased a standing desk (which you can see from the picture). Nothing says survival of the "fittest" than by learning how to cook during a pandemic. Everything I've prepared is editable but my satisfaction has come from mastering flavor profiles. Hopefully, once the pandemic is over, I will be able to share things like my blueberry crisp with my family and friends, which has a lemon and lavender drizzle. Yes, I will still have dessert.

    COVID-19 has taught me a lot about myself (after all, I've spent A LOT of quality time with myself...). These triumphs will continue following the pandemic and I look forward to the days when we can all gather to network, laugh, and have fun once again.

    Ashley Gibson CMA, CSCA, CPA
    Volunteer Leadership Committee Chair

  • 20.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 06-08-2020 07:28 AM
    Dear friend's/seniors, Hope you all are well .Many people have stories and they are sharing what they are facing in this pandemic situation .But when we look at people around us .They are very disheart and de-motivated .Actually some of them are right as they have been losed their jobs and loved ones .So in this critical time what we have to do ; Wether we should sit and look at people what they are facing or take step further to support ,help and motivate them .of course we should take step further .But some of us thinks that others are helping so leave it's not our job .So then we have to think what IMA taught us .As a IMA member ima taught me how to solve problems ,take timely decisions and face challenges .it does not mean only mathematical problems .it means to solve the problems and face the challenges in real life as well .So in this time our biggest challenge is to safe ourself and others.who might be effected by us.and look at around you help people ,Motivate them .if you cannot give them Monetary help ,still u might help .Talk to them ,motivate them .Honestly by helping others your own stress will go away .And you will feel that your problems are smaller than others .Thank you

    Shoaib Hussain
    MBA (Pak),CMA (IMA),ACCA(UK)
    Muscat Smart Projects LLC

  • 21.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 06-08-2020 08:37 AM

    How true, how moving, how uplifting!

    Thank you.


    Jeff Thomson, CMA, CSCA, CAE
    President and CEO

  • 22.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 06-14-2020 11:24 AM

    My church again continue conversation...diversity is one part but not the destination...unity is the ultimate destination.

    Peace, love and blessing for the week ahead.

    Thea N Ambrose CMA, CPA
    Sunrise, FL


  • 23.  RE: Share your story!

    Posted 06-14-2020 01:47 PM
    Very true words Ambrose.

    Babu Razack , MBA,CMA,ACMA
    CoE, IMA