Accountancy Personality of the Year

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I have done a couple of events with PQ Magazine of late. This magazine is aimed at accounting trainees (PQ stands for ‘part qualified’). There are a lot of trainee accountants in the UK, and a whole industry (including a big bit of the university sector) that is aimed at helping them develop their careers.

I have never regretted being a chartered accountant, despite all the criticisms of the profession that I have made over the years. I have embraced other disciplines, and much enjoy working in a multi-disciplinary has on, but often make the joke that if I was cut open you would find the words ‘chartered accountant’ running through me, as ‘Blackpool’ does through all the best sticks of rock. Encouraging young people to join the profession is, then, something I am happy to do.

So I when Graham Hambly of PQ Magazine invited me to their annual awards bash I thought it was a note of thanks. I was, then, slightly surprised to find when I arrived that I was listed as one of three nominees in the ‘Accountancy Personality of the Year’ category. I was even more surprised to find myself heading out of Kings Cross for home last night with the award in my bag, even if the oxymoronic nature of the award was noted whilst it was being presented!

Graham had kind words to say about me last night, and I am grateful. Accountancy has, for me, always provided a powerful framework for not just viewing what has happened, but also for appraising what should happen, for which purpose I think it even more useful. I prepared my first set of very simple accounts during a summer holiday job in 1975, at the age of 17. I have no idea how many have followed since then. But my enthusiasm for finding appropriate and meaningful interpretations of accounting data remains undiminished - hence my current enthusiasm for sustainable cost accounting and all the effort I have put into country-by-country reporting.

Now, enough of that and let’s get back to the day job....