You were previously an auditor with a large accounting firm that had very clear policies to guide
staff in relation to interactions with clients. You have, however, embarked on your own auditing
firm and are currently in the process of building, although slowly, your own client base. This has
not been as easy as you thought it would be. While you are technically very experienced, you
underestimated the time and skills required to build up you client base. Essentially you are not
really a sales person and have difficulty getting access to potential clients and then winning
them over. The result so far is that your income is not as good as you hoped. You could
probably live with this for a while, but your parents have been putting a lot pressure on you to
get married in the next year and to settle down. This of course includes buying a house.
Recently a personal contact of yours has been able to secure a meeting with a young, and very
successful, entrepreneur. He is about your age and, when you met in person, you found that
you got on really well and shared similar sporting interests. You are both interested in football
and your contact has invited you twice to the VIP’s stand of King Fahad stadium, sending you
work after each occasion. It is now 2 weeks before the UEFA Champions League Final, and you
have received an invitation to fly to Madrid on his private plane and attend the Final. Also
included is accommodation in one of Madrid’s most luxurious hotels. You know you would have
a really good time and are keen to go and meet new people.
1. Why is this a tricky situation and what ethical principle might be eroded? 2. Of the five threats to independence described in this chapter, which
threat does this situation pose? 3. What guideline would you use for determining whether to accept the
invitation to Madrid?
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