Why Building A Successful Accountancy Career Is A Strategic Process

Study hard, get your professional accountancy qualification and success will follow, right?

I wish I could say this was the case.  In the early 80’s when I started out in accountancy it might have been true.  These days things are very different.

For starters there are many more qualified accountants and it continues to grow year on year.  As a result competition is increasing.

The role is changing too.  With more and more advances in technology there’s a move towards business partnering and away from traditional scorekeeping and reporting.  This has implications in terms of the skills and attributes.

Expectations are also changing.  Increasingly the brief of those at a senior level in accountancy is expanding way beyond keeping the organisation on track financially.

In truth success in your accountancy career is achieved over the long term.  Think more in terms of a marathon rather than a sprint.

So in essence you want to be viewing your accountancy career as a strategic process.

Like any strategic processes it’s an iterative process.  It involves.


This is about stopping and really thinking about what you want from your accountancy career.  Not just short term but also medium and long term.

While your vision is forward looking it shapes everything else.


It’s good to have a vision or big picture idea of where you are heading.  Of course to make it a reality you are going to have to have a series of strategies and sub-strategies.

These might cover areas like:

  • Experience
  • Skills
  • Professional development
  • Personal development


Your tactics are the detailed actions that you will take in order to progress towards achieving your strategy and vision.

People often skip the work on envisioning and strategies and only focus on tactics.  How about you?


You might have heard the phrase what gets measured gets done.  In many ways it’s true.  Have you ever noticed that?

The reality is that if you are going to build a successful career you need to take control, become strategic and see it as an ongoing long term process.