"Failure is a great teacher, so keep trying until you get it right."
In which online degree program do you teach?
After graduating with my accounting degree, I spent three and a half years working in various accounting roles at Reynolds Metals Company in Richmond, VA. I left to join Coopers & Lybrand (now PricewaterhouseCoopers) and spent two years as a consultant, primarily in the area of information systems analysis and design. Then I spent a year at Investors Savings Bank in Richmond, VA as a financial systems accountant before going to graduate school for my PhD.
I co-author a textbook, Managerial Accounting, with my wife, Dr. Elizabeth Davis. We are currently working on revisions for the 4th edition published by John Wiley & Sons.
I have received a Lybrand Gold Medal and three Certificates of Merit for articles published in the IMA's journals Strategic Finance and Management Accounting.
Which classes do you teach online?
Managerial Accounting in the MBA core
What do students learn in this class? What is the expected outcome?
While this class is classified as an accounting class, I see it as more of a business class. We explore how managers across the organization can use managerial accounting techniques and information to support their decision-making activities. This course will not turn you into a managerial accountant, but it will give you enough knowledge to ask intelligent questions and participate in broader operational conversations.
Why did you start teaching?
When I worked at Reynolds Metals as a financial systems analyst, I was responsible for preparing training materials for a new accounting system and for delivering that training to other staff. I enjoyed teaching in that way and decided to eventually pursue an academic career. I began teaching online with the first cohort of the Baylor Online MBA, which coincided with a move I made to South Carolina when my wife was named president of Furman University.
What's the best advice you have ever received?
Failure is a great teacher, so keep trying until you get it right.
What advice would you give to prospective online students?
Asking for help is not a sign of weakness. Time is precious, so if you get stuck, reach out for assistance instead of wasting time spinning your wheels.
What qualities make someone particularly successful in the business world?
Inquisitiveness, determination, life-long learning, recognizing talent and nurturing that talent.
What do you think is the biggest challenge that people in business face today?
The rapid pace of change resulting from technological innovations and knowing how to harness those innovations to improve a product or service.
Tell us something your students might not know about you:
While in graduate school, the first financial accounting classes I taught were at both maximum and minimum security prisons. One night, I even tutored an inmate on death row. In addition to teaching in the Baylor OMBA, I serve as Furman University's first First Gentleman, a role that I never imagined I would hold.
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