Taking Stock – Accountants ready to come out fighting against

Accountants may inspire less sympathy from their human resources departments following publication of an article in ‘Personnel Today’ which paints rather less than a glowing image of the skills needed to fulfil a finance role. ‘Which One are You?’ shouts the headline, which attempts to categorise employees by personality types and then gives some advice on how to manage them. But instead of going for the usual list of guardians, rationals, idealists and artisans, the magazine suggests some more unusual stereotypes – the cast of ‘Dad’s Army’. Apparently, there may well be a Captain Mainwaring, Sergeant Wilson, Private Joe Walker and any of the others among your colleagues. And unfortunately the magazine continues with tradition by highlighting some of the worst character traits as most suitable for people with jobs in the finance department. For example, Captain Mainwaring, the archetypal Brit from a bygone age of old school ties is deemed to be a stable individual but scarcely management material. ‘His obsession with detail and inability to delegate might be best suited to a career in finance,’ it says. Hardly more enlightening, the Private James Frazers of this world are similarly warned against careers in glamorous marketing because of their ‘dour pessimism’, which is also best locked away behind the doors of the bean-counters. But TS does not believe the hype, and anyway, who says pessimists are dull? Just look at the latest bleak Hollywood release ‘Fight Club’ which features one man’s bid for popularity by getting his friends to indulge in bare-knuckle scrapping. It shows just how far a pessimist can go in the world.

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