Posts Tagged ‘enron’

Enron - Anatomy Of Greed

We all love a top 10 list.

When it comes to finance, books come in three distinct categories.

Accounting Text books – avoid like the plague!

Firstly the long often dry and tedious text books that sometimes have to be studied to gain professional qualifications – I would advise steering well clear of these and leaving them to the accountants and lawyers who have to study them!

Personal Finance Self Help Books

Secondly, there are the personal finance self-help type books that try to teach you something as quickly as possible – there are many of these but if in doubt, the dummies books are always a good place to start.

The Exposé

And finally there are my favourite category – the exposé – a book that relies on research and investigative journalism to give you the inside story.
This is where the crime, corruption and incompetence come in, with a little greed thrown in for good measure.
These are my favourite type of books – read on for the countdown from number 10 to number 1.

Recommendation No 5 – Enron – Anatomy of Greed – Brian Cruver

Enron – the Texas based Energy company was one of the biggest business and accounting scandals in US history. Enron went from being one the biggest business success stories in the last 30 years into bankruptcy and jail for senior staff members. It is also considered to be the biggest audit failure in recent history and resulted in the dissolution of Enron’s auditors and accountants Arthur Anderson – previously the 5th largest global accountancy firm.

“Enron – Anatomy of Greed” is written by an insider – Brian Cruver – a graduate trainee recruited into Enron just before things started to go wrong. He gives a fascinating insight into just what it was like to work for Enron, and how this changed when the story of their corruption began to break and then developed into eventual bankruptcy.  The human side of an employee in this situation is what is so fascinating as well as the background he gives us as to the cause of the Enron collapse – highly recommended.

“Brian Cruver was a first-hand witness to the disturbing, surreal and hilarious moments of Enron’s long dance with death.
When he first entered Enron’s office complex, ‘the Death Star’, he was the epitome of the classic Enron employee:
young, brash, obscenely overpaid and sporting a brand-new MBA.
From his first day, however, when he was told that some colleagues hadn’t really wanted to see him hired,
he found himself in the middle of a venal greed machine whose story unfolded with Kafka-esque absurdity and frustration.

Anatomy of Greed examines the accounting tricks, the insider stock trades –
and in a special section, how the grossly lucrative fraudulent partnerships were structured and funded – as well as everyday life as an Enronian.

Working at Enron meant cocky wheeling and dealing, parties on the trade floor, casual conversations at the shredder
and the insidious group- think that made Enron employees unquestioningly accept propaganda spoon-fed to them by Ken Lay and Jeffrey Skilling.

A portrait of the author as a young Enronian, Anatomy of Greed reveals the sting of reality, humility and pain felt by a man whose idols turned out to be fools and scoundrels and who learned that there is more to life than stock options. “

Chartered Management Accountant ChelmsfordTransform AccountingChartered Management Accountant Essex


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