Margreeth Kloppenburg

Thanks to Covid, Margreeth Kloppenburg's head is a bit of a blur. But it does not stop her from presenting a new publication, written for 'auditors from abroad'.

Discussie Column

Lifting spirits

Due to you-know-what, my contribution to this platform was delayed. I had been boosted (never could have imagined to apply this word in any type of context, let alone myself), but the virus was ahead of me. And there we went, down and out.

Now, still feeling a bit of a cold and a sneeze and typing in my trainers and warm socks, I don't feel like having an opinion at all on whatever subject. My head is still a bit of a blur. So, I hope you'll forgive me for not having the sharpest of pencils right now.

But! I do have something that might lift ones spirit and charge the engine for a new year ahead of us.

Because it is with great pleasure that we can actually present our newest publication. A pdf especially written for 'auditors from abroad'. We named it: 'The Dutch auditing and lunch tradition explained'. I know, the blurry head does not prevent me of presumptuous titles, but it does cover the variety of contents and expresses, hoping that the publication is a successful combination of content and an occasional smile.

The pdf on which we worked in 2021 is available free of charge and can be downloaded here.

There were a couple of reasons to make this specific effort. First, to give auditors from abroad, who are considering to work in our country, a bit more context on what it is like to live and work among the Dutch and other auditors from abroad. Secondly, coming to the Netherlands to work in the audit sector leads to many questions upfront and it can be difficult to get some idea of the discussions and developments which are relevant.

So we, as in the Foundation of Professional Honour (Stichting Beroepseer), gathered interesting data about the sector, added some historical background on the development of the profession (a chapter by Luc Quadackers), and explored the experiences of auditors who already have made 'the great leap' across various borders and oceans.

I described in my column One happy little egg (April 2021) how much fun it was to interview these experienced foreign auditors and how their stories about defying the weather ("when the sun does shine, make a run for it"), the lack of a decent food culture, especially during lunch in the canteen ("drinking karnemelk is pure horror") and of course getting around by bike (a friendship between two foreign auditors started at a biking shop) lifted my Easter spirit.

Their portraits and quotes on experiencing the Dutch culture, are scattered throughout the publication. We have also translated five essays by notable authors and academics which appeared in a book that we published in 2017. This book (Artikel 5, de beroepseer van de accountant) was about the professional honour of the chartered accountant and is still being printed and handed to accountants as a present (and welcome) on entering the charter.

So, I truly hope that you can agree upon the tone of voice we have chosen to write this publication. It should be fun to read, in a welcoming tone and offer a bit more depth and width in what it means to enter this wet little piece of land, reclaimed of the sea and where the wind is always 'tegen', to work in audit.

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Margreeth Kloppenburg is adviseur voor professionals in onder andere de accountancy. Zij is auteur van 'Artikel 5, de beroepseer van de Accountant'.

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