A demonstration of fictional IRS auditor Harold Crick’s fixation on precision and efficiency.
While accountants, auditors, actuaries, and others of similar professions are rarely portrayed as more than number-crunching robots, the few movies and television shows that stray from this stereotype may actually have the right idea. Those who view accounting as a dry profession should be careful not to generalize this opinion onto accountants themselves.
If you are one of many who are weary of being confronted with a clichéd misconception of this underrated industry, consider watching the 2006 film Stranger Than Fiction, featuring Will Ferrell as an IRS auditor named Harold Crick. In the beginning of the movie, Crick is introduced as a caricature of accounting stereotypes whose mechanical nature and routine lifestyle are exaggerated as a comical way to illustrate the impact his profession has on him. It is only when we continue watching that we can follow his journey through the messy reality that comprises life, and empathize with him as he simultaneously grapples with and embraces his humanness.
Promising no spoilers, all I can say is that Stranger Than Fiction is a compelling illustration of character development, casting a new light on such a detail-oriented, quantitative profession like accounting.
Before portraying accountants and auditors by their stereotypes, the media should learn more about the profession and its nuances, as it has changed so much since its origination. Several long-held beliefs and conceptions about accounting are now outdated and untrue. Accountants should not have to be confined by short-sighted perceptions. Harold Crick proves that compartmentalizing work and personal life, keeping them totally separate, is not the only way to live happily. His own work is such an integral part of him that it only shapes his character for the better.
If, like Crick, you’re pumped to crunch some numbers, click here to request a free demo of SkyStem’s account reconciliation platform, ART.