HCBE Theses and Dissertations

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Date of Award


Document Type

Dissertation - NSU Access Only

Degree Name

Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)


H. Wayne Huizenga School of Business and Entrepreneurship


Randall Rentfro

Committee Member

Barbara Bailey

Committee Member

Barbara McElroy


A review of the literature concerning the personalities of accountants revealed that styles and preferences have remained consistent through the years. However, the job requirements of upper-level management in large CPA firms have been changing, especially in this post-SOX regulated era.

Studies related to the personalities of accountants have been conducted concerning various behavioral issues. However, the influence of behavioral style on specific attitudes at each of the three levels in large auditing firms has not been addressed. As a result, this study identified the styles of auditors at three levels (staff auditor, audit manager, audit partner) using DiSC Indra, a self-evaluation assessment tool. In addition, the changes (if any) in specific behavioral attitudes of CPAs at each of the three levels were measured using a Survey of Attitudes.

Analysis revealed statistically significant correlations existed between dominant interpersonal relationship styles and role conflict, professional commitment, and affective professional commitment. In addition, statistically significant correlations between the three organizational levels and role conflict, organizational identification, professional commitment, and affective professional commitment also were found.

As expected, the study found that the interpersonal relationship styles of auditors in this study were significantly different from those of the general working population. In addition, the study found statistically significant differences in the frequency of interpersonal styles between levels of auditors. This may indicate that as auditors move up in their firm, they must work out of their natural interpersonal style.

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