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Accounting Firm Talent Strategies: Marina Kooijmans
Episode 4511th December 2023 • Accounting Influencers Podcast • Rob Brown (Accounting Influencers Roundtable - AIR)
00:00:00 00:19:56

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Rob Brown interviews Marina Koijmans, a talent and workplace expert, on the topic of talent management and upskilling in the accounting profession. Marina begins by explaining the challenges of talent management in today's rapidly changing world. She highlights the importance of reskilling and upskilling due to the ever-changing marketplace and the need for organizations to adapt and stay relevant. She mentions that technology-driven change and innovation are key drivers of this need for new skills.

The conversation then shifts to the perception of accountants as not traditionally being associated with innovation. Marina acknowledges this but emphasizes that the accounting profession is also evolving and recognizing the importance of upskilling and change. She explains that accountants need to acquire not only technical skills but also digital skills and advisory skills to meet the changing needs of customers.

Marina introduces the concept of a skill strategy and explains that organizations need to focus on skills rather than job descriptions. She mentions the importance of internal mobility and how it allows employees to develop new skills in different environments. She also highlights the benefits of international mobility, as it provides opportunities to learn from different cultures and enhance career growth.

The conversation then delves into the various skills and competencies that should be part of any skill strategy or framework. Marina outlines five skill groups: technical skills, digital skills, advisory skills, leadership skills, and human skills. She emphasizes the importance of leadership, storytelling, problem-solving, ethics, integrity, and effective communication in the accounting profession.

Rob and Marina discuss the challenges faced by accountants in upgrading their skills. Marina acknowledges that many accountants feel comfortable with their current knowledge and are hesitant to step out of their comfort zones, particularly when it comes to human skills. However, she highlights the importance of continuous learning and personal development to stay relevant in a changing landscape.

The conversation concludes with Marina discussing different learning approaches and methods. She mentions the use of blended learning, including classroom training, e-learning, and audio books. Marina emphasizes the need for individuals to take responsibility for their own learning and development.

Overall, this episode of the Accounting Influencers podcast provides valuable insights into the challenges and importance of talent management and upskilling in the accounting profession. It highlights the need for accountants to adapt, develop new skills, and embrace continuous learning to succeed in a rapidly changing industry.

Marina Kooijman is the Chief People Officer at HLB, based at the Executive Office in London. In this pivotal role, Marina spearheads the development and execution of HLB's comprehensive people strategy, driving the organization towards innovation and inspiration. She is deeply committed to fostering a vibrant corporate culture rooted in HLB's core values and purpose.

Marina firmly believes that nurturing talent and cultivating a diverse, inclusive environment, where every individual feels secure, valued, and respected, is the key to achieving business success and sustainable growth.

Before joining HLB International, Marina garnered a wealth of experience working with renowned international firms such as Deloitte and PwC, both in the Netherlands and across borders. Her extensive background in talent management positions her as a seasoned professional in her field.


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