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People-Centric Skills: Interpersonal and Communication Skills for Auditors and Business Professionals by Danny M. Goldberg, Manny Rosenfeld

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Foreword

IN 2013, the Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA) and Robert Half released research entitled “7 Attributes of Highly Effective Internal Auditors.” Coauthored by the IIA's president and CEO, Richard Chambers, and by Paul McDonald, senior executive director from Robert Half, this piece was a giant leap forward for the profession of internal auditing. This article moved the dialog from the “technician” internal auditor to the consummate “soft skills” internal auditor. Among the seven attributes, they included communication, teamwork, partnering, and relationship building.

As a veteran chief auditor for more than 25 years in the airline business (Eastern, Continental, and United Airlines), I have advocated that while technical skills, including “knowing the business,” are important ingredients for a successful internal auditor, it is strong interpersonal skill sets that truly differentiate the world-class internal auditor from the competent one. I have even asserted that given the choice of having the gold medal winner on the CPA or CIA exam on my team or the top soft skills candidate, I would select the top interpersonal skills person every time.

My own background does not follow the traditional accountant/auditor path. My father was an ordained minister whose undergraduate major was English. He instilled in me a love of writing and oratory. In high school, I competed in many essay contests and won a number of them. In college, while my degree was in accounting, I also ...

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