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RSM, the world’s sixth largest audit, tax and consulting network, has celebrated the tenth year of its RSM Academy.

The RSM Academy, founded by the CEO of RSM International, Jean Stephens, in 2007, allows member firms to draw on strong international links and capabilities and form relationships within the network to the benefit of cross-border and international clients around the world.

The five-day course, held in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, has evolved as the profession has shifted focus, adapting and responding to changing legislation and regulation during the last ten years, but has continually centred on RSM’s global strategy and focuses on talent development and international technical expertise.

To date, over 500 of RSM’s future leaders have completed the programme, with this year’s participants attending classes on international business development, cultural awareness and thinking and learning styles.

This year’s 57 delegates, spanning offices across 29 countries, took part in a case study focusing on working with international clients, specifically dealing with tendering audit, tax and corporate finance services to a fictitious global car manufacturer.

In her second year as CEO, Jean Stephens established the RSM Academy to encourage the use of cultural differences for the benefit of international development, something she is particularly passionate about.

Ms Stephens commented: “International collaboration is crucial for a global network like RSM. Not only are delegates developing technical skills that will help them in their day-to-day jobs, they are also contributing to the global network by adding further international capabilities within their firms. RSM Academy helps delegates to gain insight into RSM’s strategy, vision and values and to develop their own leadership skills that are necessary in the global accountancy profession. I am extremely proud of what the RSM Academy has achieved since its inception and hope it continues for many more years to come.”

Global participants, in particular, have benefitted from increased awareness of RSM’s global network. Simon Grant, an Australian working at RSM in Spain, commented on his experience saying: “The RSM Academy has provided an opportunity to engage with employees across all regions – sharing knowledge and insights. It is a great reminder of the strength and depth of our expertise and capabilities across the globe. Moreover, it provides an ideal opportunity to benchmark against other offices in the network and ensure we are sharing key learnings.”