What Attributes do You Need to Become an Accountant?
As businesses across South Africa continue to flourish, the demand for accountants is
rising. From strong economic areas like Cape Town, to thriving rural populations, people
across South Africa are in need of accountancy services. It therefore makes sense that
more and more people want to enter this profession for security. Although choosing to
become an accountant does provide professional security, not everyone has the aptitude for
the field. It therefore makes sense to know whether you have the attributes it takes to
become an accountant.
Attention to Detail
Whether you are performing basic book keeping for a self-employed individual or working as
part of a large corporate team, you need to pay close attention to detail. Getting something
wrong on a customer's accounts not only costs you their custom, it can lead to them
incurring fines. Get something seriously wrong, and your professional integrity may be
called into question.
A Talent for Maths
Some may feel that it goes without saying that you need a talent for maths in order to
become an accountant. However, many people feel that they can enter the profession off
the back of a calculator alone. While calculators are readily available, your talent for maths
still requires you to remember complex formulas—especially when it comes to taxation.
Make sure you have this before putting yourself through the pain of accountancy training.
Everything you need to know about South Africa's taxation laws will come with your training.
However, you should make sure you have a knack for legal knowledge before proceeding
with the accountant training. Unlike many other areas of law, tax, business, and finance are
incredibly complex. Make sure you feel comfortable with becoming a pseudo-legal expert
before you choose to become an accountant.
Great People Skills
Having great people skills is especially important for those who want to work for themselves.
As someone working for a larger company you can—to a degree—rely on your bosses to
find clients for you. However, those working for smaller firms on a face-to-face basis with
clients need to be able to liaise nicely. If you have a bad attitude or poor communication
skills, you may soon find yourself losing work.
Accounts are likely to face temptation at some point or another. While you have a duty to
serve your customers, you are also obligated to do this within the confines of the law.
Regardless of how much money someone offers you, you should never make an attempt to
cloud their finances. This can lead to both you and them ending up in prison.
Last, but not least, you must always be reliable. Appointments, meetings, and deadlines are
all down to you. The work you address is just another project for you, but it means the world
to your client. Always go above and beyond to meet their demands, and you should have no
problem trying to become an accountant.
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