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Author(s): Linda M. Nichols, PhD, CPA
Generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) in the United States (U.S.) are very detailed and rules based. In comparison, international financial reporting standards (IFRS) are principles based and require more judgment in reporting on the part of the accountant. This results in the nature of the accountant’s duties being different in the U.S. than in countries using IFRS. It is possible; therefore, that the individual traits and characteristics viewed as most important to success in the accounting profession may be different in the U.S. versus internationally. This behavioral study surveys both U.S. and international accountants regarding the traits and characteristics they perceive as most important to success in the accounting profession. Some significant differences are found which reflect the different duties of accountants in the U.S. versus elsewhere in the world.