Accounting Skills Required by Entry-Level Management in Business Organizations in Kogi State
Over the years businessmen make some mistakes without knowing the consequences on business. Goods may not be priced accurately and a lot of
unnecessary expenditure may be incurred on the false assumption of profits. Needles, Anderson and Caldwell (1984) observed that to measure a business
transaction, the accountant is faced with three major problems of’ recognition, valuation and classification. The recognition problem is the difficulty of deciding when a business transaction occurs. The valuation problem has to do with the difficulty of assigning a value to a business transaction. The classification problem is that of assigning all the transactions in which a business will engage to the appropriate accounts. Agbobu (!992) suggested that accounting enables a business to know how much it owns, owes and how much profit it has made and its financial position at a given time. This study, therefore,.was designed to investigate accounting skills required by entry-level managers in business I organizations. To carry out the study, five research questions and three hypotheses were formulated while literature was reviewed accordingly.
Questionnaire was used to collect relevant data from a sample of 150 managers selected from a total population of’ 215 managers in business organizations in Kogi State. Frequencies and mean were used to answer the research questions, while t-test statistics was employed to test the null hypothesis one, and Chi- Square (x2) was used for hypotheses two and three at the 0.05 level of significance. The study among other things, revealed that preparing a balance sheet, ‘maintaining cost control, recognizing estimation cost, scheduling and maintaining quality, caring for over trading were viewed as accounting skills required by entry-level managers. Recommendations made based on the findings were that there should be training of entry-level managers. Training is a means of preparing entry-level managers for the ultimate aim of making them good so as to make them better performers in business organizations. Entry level managers should be made to work. The skill of any manager is judged by the efficiency of its work. Lastly, it was recommended that job enlargement should be emphasized in business organizations where entry-level managers practice.
BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY:
In every establishment, be it government offices, parastatals,private companies, banks and other financial institutions there exists an accounting system. According to Umunnah (1992), the American Institute of Certified Accountants defined accounting as the art of recording, classifying, in a significant manner and in terms of money, transactions and events which are in part, at least, of financial character and interpreting the results thereof. In the
business world, an average businessman has to keep records of his activities to enable him give! an accurate report of the results of his enterprise. However, accounting extends far beyond the actual making of records. Accounting is concerned with the use to which these records ate put, into their analysis and interpretation Accounting deals with the need of business to know how much it owes, how much it owns, how much profit it has made and what is its financial position at a given time. Highlighting on the importance of accounting to business organizations, Agbobu (1992) &o observed th& accounting records me indispensable aa a means of providing the management of business enterprises and other organizations with the financial
information necessary for the operation.s of the business.
Only through financial records is the management able to obtain an over view of the tot& operation of the business. For this reason, accounting records are referred to as the eyes of business and accounting is &led the language of business. Recognizing the importance of amounting, Onyekwa ( 1998) also
stated that accounting seems as a guidance system which tries to effectively guide and direct the organization. As a guidance system, it points to their direction the organization in going. When there is any deviation, management takes corrective action to bring the organization back on course. In this way, amounting serves as an aid to planning and controlling. Schermerhorn 8996) – ( – defined a manager as a person. in an organization who is responsible for the work performance of one or more other persons. A manager is therefore a person who organizes the resources at, his disposal for the achievement of some defined objectives. The manager’s job is to help the organization achieve a high level of materiel resources.
Most simply, a manager’s job is to get things done through other people. A manager is accountable for the work of others as well as his own. Classifying different types of managers in business organization scherrnerhorn ( 1996) noted that there me various levels of managers in an organization. Top managers ensure the goals are set and accomplished in with the organizations purpose, and they monitor the environment potential problems and opportunities associated with this purpose. This group includes chief executive offices; chief operating officer, president and vice ,president. Middle managers constitute the second or third level in organization’s hierarchy of authority. They report to managers at the top level, while lower level managers report to them. Examples of middle managers include departmental heads in a hospital, deans in a University, and division managers, or personnel directors in a business. Describing middle level managers, Koontz, 0′ Donne11 and Weihrich (1983) pointed that they are crucial to organizations. They interpret
directions set by higher into plans and action guideline for lower level personnel. In turn, they are conduits through which information flows upwards in the hierarchy to keep top managers informed about lower level . concerns. This middle level responsibility is a testing ground from which many organizations .fill top management appointments.
Grouping the last level of managers, Shermerhorn (1996) pointed that lower level managers implement the plans and directives of middle and upper management level on a day-to-day basis. Job titles such as supervisors, unit head, team leader, and foreman are common to persons at the first line of supervisory level of management These are the people to whom operating employees report. According to Tonne, Popham and Freeman (1985), skill is a level of mastery. A skill has been achieved when an action can be exercised although something is upper most in the mind. To Schermerhorn ( l996), a skill is an ability to translate knowledge into action that results in the desired performance. Truly important, skills for managers are those that help them to help others become productive in their ‘work. The field of management offers a knowledge base for the initial development of these managerial skills. Katz (1974) classified the essential skill of managers into three categories – technical, human and conceptual.
A technical skill is a ability to use special proficiency or expertise relating to a method, process or procedure. Accountants,engineers and attorneys, for example, possess technical skills required through formal education. Human skill is the ability to work well in cooperation with other persona. It emerges as a spirit of trust, enthusiasm, and genuine involvement In interpersonal relationship. A person with good human skills will have a high degree of self awareness and a capacity to understand or emphasize with the feeling of others. Given the highly interpersonal name of managerial work, human skills remain crucial for all managers. All good managers ultimately have the ability to view the organization or situation as a whole and solve problems to the benefits of everyone one concerned. ‘This is a conceptual skill that draws heavily
on one’s analytical and diagnostic capacities to identify problems and opportunities, gather and interpret relevant information, and make good problem solving decisions that a e m the organization’s purpose. Although all three skills are essential at the managerial level, their relative importance tends to vary across levels. Technical skills are relatively more important ah lower managerial levels where supervisors me dealing with ‘concrete problem. Odoom ( 1988) described business as employment, that is the trade or profession out of which an individual earns a living. He also explained that business may be viewed as a commercial or industrial concern in which people have invested money. Onyekwa (1988) however stated that an accountant views business
views business from a broader perspective fkom a broader perspective. He sees business as a place where conversion and reconversion of resources take place. A business usually is brought into existence with some form of resources.
These resources may be in form of money or otherwise. For proper organization of business resources, the entry-level managers need some skills that is why there is a need for the study.
Accounting Skills Required by Entry-Level Management in Business Organizations in Kogi State
STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM.
Boston (1996) attached much importance to skills needed by entry level managers in business organizations with seriousness. He observed that over the years businessmen make some mistakes without knowing- the consequences on business. He also noted that, goods may not be priced accurately and a lot of unnecessary expenditure may be incurred on the false assumption of profits. Similarly, Agbobu (1992), supported that many businesses have failed
because of poor accounting knowledge possessed by managers, poor record-keeping technique displayed by managers and indiscriminate spending by managers. Agbobu also noted that accounting is an aid to planning, a tool for control, a proof of financial position, learning the technique of financial forecasting, sources and proper application of fund, and stock control should be a must for every citizen in Nigeria. However, Osuala (1 995) attributed the failure of ‘business organizations to under capitalization. He opined that because of high mortality rate of new small businesses, financial institutions are unwilling to lend or to invest in these new ventures.
This inaccessibility to start -up capital leaves the new business on a weak financial foundation, vulnerable to the causes of business failures. Needles, Anderson and Caldwell (1984) emphasized three major problems accountant faced in measuring a business transaction, to be recognition, valuation, and classification. Recognition problem is the difficulty of deciding when a business transaction occurs. Often the facts of a situation are known, but there is a disagreement as to when the events should be recorded. The valuation problem is perhaps the most controversial issue in accounting. It has to do with the difficulty of assigning a value to business transaction. The classification problem is that of assigning all the transactions in which a business will engage to the appropriate accounts. However, the above problems therefore, call for entry – level managers to possess the necessary accounting skills required for success in business