Forgetting Enron

I was talking with the guys at work about some auditing stuff on Monday – its time for the BIS external audit – and one of the guys was trying to remember which of the Big 4 companies would be auditing us. “I’m sure its Sarbanes Oxley” he said. Being the SOx nerd I am, I corrected him automatically.
“Sarbanes Oxley is actually the legislation that was brought into place in 2002 in America, mainly as a reaction to the corporate governance failures that lead to the collapse of companies such as Enron and Arthur Anderson”
This little spiel just sort of fell out of my mouth in a burst, without a thought. The guys looked at me oddly.
“Ah, we forget you actually know stuff”
And sometimes, I do. My job at the moment doesn’t require any use of my degree, but one of my favourite companies to study at uni was Enron. It all started in first year, when Louise and I were sitting in Cafe Perv, sipping on mochas between lectures, and reading the newspaper. There was an article about a new book that was coming out – Pipe Dreams – and it gave a brief overview of who Enron was, and what had happened. This really interested me for some reason, and I started to read more and more.
In second year, I took an auditing module mostly because Enron was the case study and coursework. My friends were just as pleased as I was about this, because they knew I had a stash of Enron related books at home.
I recieved a first for that essay, along with a note from the lecturer basically saying that there was stuff in my essay that he had to look up to check on! Thats when you know you have a problem.
Even now, I smile when I see a story or a TV show referencing the Crooked E. I was just as upset when I heard about Ken Lay’s (the CEO of Enron) death as I was when I heard about Heath Ledgers. Oddly enough, Monday nights episode of the Simpsons – Special Edna – had this rollercoaster in it…well, I don’t need to explain it to you when theres a YouTube link!

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