A boss of one of the world’s largest accounting firms has told hundreds of employees to “stop complaining” and “playing the victim” about COVID working conditions. Bill Michael, chairman of KPMG UK, spoke at a virtual meeting on Monday that discussed working conditions during the COVID-19 pandemic, and has since apologized for the manner in which his comments came.
KPMG is one of the so-called Big Four accounting firms, and some employees had recently been told they would receive a pay cut. Read: 20% of audited IPOs from the Big 4 report weaknesses in financial reporting controls Companies in Europe and the US have been trying to find the right balance between helping staff, many who work from home and having to educate their children, and support staff to achieve work goals. The staff did not take Michael’s comments kindly, with one reportedly telling the Financial Times, which was the first with this story, “If someone tells you to stop moaning in the middle of a recession and when people are dying, that tells you everything. It‘s incredibly insensitive. “Read: KPMG won BBVA’s audit with stolen data on inspections from rival Michael, who had been hospitalized after testing positive for COVID-19, wrote an email to staff apologizing, saying:“ I know that words matter and I am sorry for the ones I chose to use today. I think the confinement is proving difficult for everyone. I am very sorry for what I said and the way I said it. “I can only imagine what you and your families are going through and with what they continue to grapple every day. Having endured my own experiences, I should have appreciated the impact it is having on all of us. ” KPMG was contacted for comment.