Accountancy Age exclusive: FDs’ concern over dull reputation

Of more than 200 FDs interviewed for this week’s Accountancy Age/Reed Personnel Big Question., some 32% said they did not admit to being an accountant either because of the baggage associated with the word ‘accountant’ or because their listeners usually want their financial problems solved.

Richard Cooper, finance director of John Rannoch Foods, said: ‘I’m an accountant, so I don’t get invited to parties.’

Another finance director said: ‘[I’m] bombarded with questions.’

But 48% of FDs said they were not at all embarrassed to refer to themselves as accountants. A further 20% saying they sometimes told people the truth of their profession depending on the circumstances.

‘Honest. Often I say I’m afraid I’m an accountant, but I’m not that boring!’ said one FD.

Nevertheless, FD of United News and Media, Rory Park takes a more candid approach. He tells people he is an accountant ‘because that’s what I am, and its ridiculous to pretend you are anything else.’

Others prefer to avoid the ‘work’ conversation entirely. ‘Don’t discuss it at parties – definitely at the wrong party if I’m talking about it!’ said Stephen Ashton Smith, finance director at Maby Hire.

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