Your career is a marathon, enjoy the journey

Oct 15, 2019

Welcome to those commencing the Chartered Accountancy qualification, we wish you the best of luck and that you enjoy the upcoming academic year/s. 

The beginning of any course or undertaking can feel overwhelming and be daunting for the best of us and so I’d encourage you to be kind to yourself and if it helps to break it down into manageable chucks do so, for example focusing on the term to Christmas may be of help. 

Yes there will be some reading over the break as well as festivities and get togethers but then think of the chuck from January to Easter and so on.  If we break down the job into more bite-size pieces, it can often reduce the sense of apprehension and in fact help with the planning of each term and year ahead.

As a career coach working with newly to recently qualified members the recurring observation over the last few years has been a lack of awareness of what has been enjoyed or not enjoyed during the contract/training period. 

I would encourage you to jot down as you go through this journey what you are feeling about the course, the work the study, what you are noticing about a particular client or sector or experience.  What do I mean by that? I’m referring to the awareness that you particularly enjoy a specific client or sector or environment, firstly notice that you enjoy it then secondly, ask yourself why-  why - why is important - why do I like this? is this team something I could work with in the future, is this sector of interest does it tie with my values and principles and beliefs and would I be proud to work for them?

I appreciate in the midst of lectures and audits this may not be high on your list of priorities but trust me the time put into these observations can pay dividends in the long term when you are asked post qualification about what you love, where would you like to work next etc. This is where it will all click into place for you and you have the STAR examples to fall back on.

Employers are consistently telling us that they’d like to see ‘commercially aware’ members so it’s not just the study, the qualification or the exams that are important.  There is a huge amount in terms of your overall understanding and appreciation of what’s happening in the world of work and in the  wider environment that could potentially impact on the business and sectors you are considering.  Networking, communicating and going to events (not just the social ones) but also the early morning or lunchtime talks that open up a new level of knowledge and understanding of the environment and business can prove invaluable.  A quote I read recently from someone stuck with me she said regardless of the experience or role she realises that ‘nothing (was) wasted’ this is now her motto and perhaps that applies to all of us in some shape or form.  While we may not immediately appreciate the value of the learning or work it may prove the element that gets us the role in 10-20 years’ time!

We are here for you throughout your career and our supports are also here in the form of CA Support for times when you may feel that talking to the career coaching team is not quite enough, our colleagues in CA Support are here for you also every step of the way

We wish you luck in your exciting journey ahead