The auditor is an organization's "police officer." Just as a law enforcement officer's duty is to ensure citizens' compliance with the law, and to exercise authority to take corrective action when necessary, the auditor's duty is to ensure that clients comply not only with their own organization's standards and requirements, but also with accounting reporting standards such as the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002.
There is inherent tension between auditor and client, just as there is between police officer and citizen — even when the client has not violated requirements. Trust in the auditor's objectivity, independence, and fairness is an ever-present, although usually unspoken, concern of the client.
It is incumbent upon the auditor to manage this potential conflict skillfully. Failure to do so risks damage to the client-auditor relationship, erosion of the client's organizational loyalty, harm to public attitudes toward the auditing profession, and other costly* consequences.
Auditors are provided essential understanding of the hidden dynamics of conflict, and tools for managing it, by selecting the Training-the-Professional (Track 3) registration option. Auditing teams may take advantage of the Team Discount.
* Click for complimentary access to the Dana Measure of Financial Cost of Organizational Conflict, an on-line calculator producing immediate results. Estimate your financial return on investment in conflict management training.
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