When we start out in accounting we learn a lot.
We study for exams and get professionally qualified.
We become good at a lot of stuff.
We might even become know as the go to person in the department.
While it’s vitally important to get really good at the core accounting work, it can be your downfall in my experience.
Chances are you will find plenty of others who are also technically brilliant like you.
On the other hand you will find fewer who are good all rounders.
By that I mean people who are T shaped.
Those that who:
- Are technically sound.
- Can manage and achieve results through others.
- Can lead people and projects.
- Understand the drivers of success in the business.
- Understand business more widely.
- Can work effectively with a whole range of different stakeholders
- Can deliver results, bring insights and add value too.
You see I noticed pretty early on in my career in accounting that technical ability alone will only take you so far.
Increasingly organisations, whatever sector they operate in are looking for more and more from their Finance people.
Personally I believe this is a great opportunity.
Of course being T shaped requires you to approach your accounting career differently.
It’s about looking to get access to opportunities to gain experience that takes you outside of what’s familiar.
It’s about undertaking a real range of CPD activities that help you do the job you are in now well and set you up for the longer term.
It’s about seeing your professional and personal growth as continual work in progress.
So don’t fall into the trap of believing that technical ability alone will result in you building a successful career in accounting.