I never wanted to be an accountant.
My life goal at school was to be a plumber. But my mum believed going to uni and studying accounting was a better idea.
So one summer morning, my parents drove me from our home in Coffs Harbour to a campus in Brisbane and dropped me off with a suitcase and a smile.
It was hard, but I stuck at it, and a few years later I graduated with a degree in business accountancy.
Fair to say, I now owe my mum an apology. (Sorry, mum.)
Because here I am, 30+ years later, founding director of a successful accounting firm (PT Partners), a bookkeepers network (Australian Bookkeepers Network) and a not for profit (Australian Bookkeepers Association).
And I’m loving every minute of it.
As an accountant, I get a buzz out of seeing my clients’ businesses perform well. It’s like watching the Broncos win, except that I’m not just sitting on the sidelines cheering them on—I’m actually playing the game. I’m part of the team, and when they win, I win.
As a director of a bookkeepers network and association, I’ve seen the birth and development of an entire profession. A profession that is utterly essential, and yet frequently undervalued.
My aim when starting Australian Bookkeepers Network almost 20 years ago was to help bookkeepers raise their profile and get the recognition they deserve. We’ve come a long, long way since then, but I still think we’ve got a way to go.