Q: What’s the definition of an accountant?

A: Someone who solves a problem you didn’t know you had in a way you don’t understand.

Normally, the mere mention of accounting is enough to send most people into deep REM sleep, and for good reason. Accounting is boring. But as with a lot of other boring things in life, we still do it. Driving to work and getting our teeth cleaned are boring, but we do them because we know that each serves as a means to an end. Similarly, we learn accounting to assist us in tackling a number of business and personal challenges. A clear understanding of accounting, along with the ability to apply the concepts, will lead to better decision making in our business activities. From picking stocks ...

Get The Wall Street MBA, Third Edition: Your Personal Crash Course in Corporate Finance, 3rd Edition now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience books, live events, courses curated by job role, and more from O’Reilly and nearly 200 top publishers.