I saw an interesting video on TED today on How art can help you analyze – Amy E. Herman. In the video Amy talks about how learning to analyse art can help doctors, nurses, police officers learn real world skills. Studying art like René Magritte’s Time Transfixed can enhance communication and analytical skills, with an emphasis on both the seen and unseen.
You can watch the video here http://ed.ted.com/lessons/how-art-can-help-you-analyze-amy-e-herman.
This method could also be used as a tool to help internal auditors be better at their jobs and help them see the whole picture or the bigger picture.
A big challenge while training internal auditors is how does one teach the softer analytic and investigative skills that are required to make a good auditor. Case studies can only take one so far, since they only teach how one should reach in situations similar to the case study.
In the past while working with new staff who has joined the audit function from the business you are always faced with a problem of how to teach them to ask the right questions and tailor their approach for the situation they are in. When we cannot teach this skill effectively, the amount of rework and review points go up. Along with this the frustration levels also go up.
As a young auditor you learn to anticipate the type of questions your manager always asks and ensure you have those aspects covered. This ensures that the audit review is smooth and there isn’t too much back and forth between the auditor and the auditee.
However, this approach limits the effectiveness of the audit to the approach of the person managing the audit and may leave the organisation vulnerable to risks on the ground which the auditor didnt pickup during fieldwork due to lack of skills.
I think we could look at techniques used to analyse art as another way to train audit staff. Some of the techniques are http://www.getty.edu/education/teachers/building_lessons/formal_analysis.html