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Building Credibility in Audit Through Effective Communication

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Date(s): Jun 21, 2021 - Jun 24, 2021
Time: 8:00AM - 12:00PM
Registration Fee: $289.00
Cancellation Date: Jun 14, 2021
Location: Online

Course Description

Internal Auditors spend most of their time communicating: speaking with clients, preparing information for distribution, and understanding information they have gathered. Good communication skills are essential for an auditor, and excellent communication skills will make auditors more effective and successful in their role. The course examines why effective communication skills are the foundation for credibility and success for auditors. This course will provide auditors with the communication skills needed in the many communication situations auditors face daily. Participants will gain an understanding of how different communication styles impact the way a message is presented and received and how to effectively navigate various communication formats.


This interactive course will use lecture, group exercises, real-life case studies, and examples to help auditors develop and implement these communication skills in interviewing situations, meetings, conference calls, presentations, and report writing. Finally, the course will address how to effectively handle difficult situations and conflict. This course utilizes the DiSC Assessment to evaluate participants’ communications styles.

Potential CPE Credits: 16.0

Instruction Type: Live
Experience Level: INTERMEDIATE
Category: 02 Auditing

Course Objectives

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to:

         Understanding the importance of credibility in audit

         Communicating effectively with clients and stakeholders

         Understand different communication styles

         Becoming a skilled interviewer—developing an effective questioning and interviewing style

         Developing skills for dealing with difficult people and situations

         Tips, tools, and techniques for all communication formats

         Learning what builds and develops credibility in communication and relationships



         Running Audit like a business

         Setting realistic expectations and consistently meeting them

         Owning and managing the responsibility of effective communication in audit relationships

         Evaluating all communication for “build” or “burn” regarding credibility


Communication Skills

         Listening | Body language | Tone and attitude

         Establishing rapport | Building relationships

         Understanding your audience | Formal vs. informal


Communication Styles & DiSC Assessments

         Styles and types of communication

         Receiving and delivering messages from/to different communication styles

         Identifying behaviors and working with varying behaviors


Meetings and Informal Communication

         Email | Impromptu meetings | Phone calls

         Facilitating meetings | Agendas | Timing and location

         Formalities—length, rescheduling, follow-up, timeliness


Interviewing and Questioning

         Understanding the business | Defining objectives and risks

         Types, styles, and progression of questions

         Language, terminology, and colloquialisms

         Dos and Don’ts of Interviewing | Note taking | Guides and questionnaires



         Characteristics of a negotiation

         People vs. problems | Understanding positions

         Identifying alternative solutions


Presentations & Reporting

         Determining presentation style for an audience

         Detailed vs. “Bottom-Line” and everything in between

         Visualization of data/information

         Presentations – Timing | Fear—tricks of the trade

         Organization of information—telling a story

         Getting to the point | 5Cs | Readability and conciseness

         Voice—active vs. passive | Audit “speak” and lingo

         Length and the use of appendices and attachments

         Reviewing and Editing



         Difficult people and situations

         Conflict situations

         Audit findings

         Thinking on your feet



Professionals with at least 2 years of experience in order to draw upon their experience.



Mary Breslin

Mary Breslin is the Founder of Verracy Training & Consulting and specializes in Internal Audit transformations, Operational and Financial Auditing, Fraud Auditing & Investigations, and Corporate Accounting.


Ms. Breslin’s career spans over 20 years in Internal Auditing, Management and Accounting for companies such as ConocoPhillips, Barclays Capital, Costco Wholesale, Jefferson Wells and Boart Longyear. With significant International experience, she has managed audit programs in more than 50 countries. Most recently, Ms. Breslin held the title of Vice President and Chief Audit Executive where she transformed a checklist audit function into a value-add audit department which regularly delivered measurable business results through the use of risk-based auditing, data analytics, continuous education and skill development for her leadership team and staff.


Mary was an early adopter of analytics for audit and has been utilizing data analytics in her career in both audit and fraud work for over 15 years. She has transformed the capabilities of audit functions using data analytics programs using ACL, IDEA and Arbutus Analyzer. Through her expertise and guidance, she has helped large global organizations leverage analytics to significantly increase coverage, automate continuous auditing and monitoring, and actively fight fraud.


Additionally, Ms. Breslin has extensive Fraud Audit and Investigation experience and has conducted major fraud investigations on multiple continents including large scale federal cases domestically. She has developed and implemented fraud auditing programs in various industries focused on both accounting and operations.


Ms. Breslin attended Rutgers University and received her BS in accounting, and an MBA from the University of Phoenix while living and working overseas. She is a Certified Internal Auditor (CIA), and Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE). She maintains memberships in the Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA), American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), ISACA, the Society of Corporate Compliance (SCCE), and the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE) and is currently an instructor and conference speaker for the IIA, The ACFE and ISACA.

Additional Information

TAC Rule 523.142(g) requires the CPE Sponsor to monitor individual attendance and assign the correct number of CPE credits. Participants will be asked to document their time of arrival and departure in compliance with this Rule. Additionally, attendance will be monitored throughout the day and CPE certificates will reflect actual attendance of each participant.

If you are making travel plans to come to Austin, we recommend making "refundable" air and hotel reservations or waiting until 14 days before the class to actually book your reservations. Courses are occasionally canceled or rescheduled due to low enrollment. We determine whether a course has enough participants 16 days prior to the course date. If we cancel or reschedule, we will email the participant and his or her billing contact no later than 14 days before the original class date.

The course coordinator will contact you with parking information. Handicapped parking is free at the meters around the downtown area.

Vending machines with Coca-Cola products and various snack items are available. There is also a refrigerator and microwave in our coffee bar area. Feel free to bring in your own drinks and food if you prefer.

You might want to bring a light sweater or jacket, as room temperatures vary.

To see answers to our Frequently Asked Questions, visit

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