I’m an accountant by day. Yes, geeky and lowly as many imagined accountants look like. I’m telling you now, accountants don’t look like that (as least not all of us haha). A lot of movies featured doctors, lawyers, engineers, and even George Clooney’s Up movie character – retrenchment specialist. But I don’t recall a lot of movies featuring accountants. I wonder why... Are we that boring? Perhaps a lot of people have the impression that all we do is crunch numbers all day long. Hell no! We do way beyond figuring out numbers. In fact, accountants are everywhere. We can be a noble teacher/professor if we’re in academe. Yeah, we need to continually produce and spread our breed. We can be crunching numbers, yes. We can be finance and management consultants if our experience and credentials qualify us.
Licensed accountants (those who passed the government licensure examinations) can do audit. Yup, we can be dreaded auditors if we are qualified to be. They can also do freelance statement preparers and auditors, and finance advisers. My former boss now owns her own consulting firm.
This picture shows you the dreaded columnar journal where accountants supposedly book the entries detailing all business transactions. Actually, that’s a bookkeeper’s job. A bookkeeper doesn't have to be an accounting graduate. He/she simply needs to understand “accounting.” Mind you those financial statements you see came from these books, at least for companies that do not have sophisticated financial systems. I am working for a multinational company but our system has not been registered yet with the regulatory body hence; I am literally writing on these books currently. You might say “what the heck?” That’s my initial reaction too. I haven’t touched a manual journal like this after first year college. But you can imagine the wonders we do – transforming these filthy books to financial statements that industry moguls and investors rely on for their valuable business decisions.
With the proliferation of business process outsourcing in recent years, Filipino accountants turned into jetsetters. They travel the world to bring processes to the Philippines, make them their own and enhance such processes. How long does the cycle take? - As brief as 6 months! So if you think that accountants sit in their office corners glued to the monitors, think again. We do more.
Accountants also are capable of starting up own businesses. We can manage by ourselves. Why? We know the numbers, we can’t be fooled. This is my dream actually – to be a freelance finance and management consultant and entrepreneur. As of the moment, I still need to be a corporate slave to widen my network, enhance my business experience, and of course save something for capital in the future.
We are also talented. We can sing, dance, write, play an instrument, etc. Yup both of our left and right brains work. Most of us are really logical but some of us especially the younger generation, are also creative. We come up with creative corporate activities and yes, Christmas party presentations! This is unsolicited but if my sources are correct, Nina, the multi-platinum recording star in the Philippines used to be an accountant. I told you we can sing! Haha
To be really honest, I never dreamt of being an accountant. Back in high school my mom asked me what I’d like to take up in college. Of course I told her I want music! That’s all I want anyway. But she told me I won’t make money out of music so she insinuated, and well I was dragged, to take up accountancy. When I was already working, I almost cursed her for dragging me to this profession because I didn’t get to sleep anymore while I was on my first job. I still wonder why I am an accountant but you know I feel blessed that I am because there are always job opportunities for us. I can do what I want with my free time and I can be myself. So if you don’t have any idea what accountants do, we don’t just do numbers. We do a whole lot more!