Chasing Dreams: Stories of Business Triumphs and Challenges

Breaking the Accountant Stereotype: Jan McArd's Journey to Work-Life Balance

Episode Summary

Join us on this episode of 'Chasing Dreams: Stories of Business Triumphs and Challenges' as we sit down with Jan McArd from Jan McDermott & Co, a dedicated marathoner who defies the accountant math stereotype. Jan's unique journey led her to choose accountancy over university, driven by what she didn't want to do. Today, she shares her insights on work-life balance during lockdown and provides invaluable advice to SME business owners in the UK on tech, networking, resilience, and outsourcing for enduring success."

Episode Notes

Founder and leader of her charted accountancy business, Past president of the Liverpool society of chartered accountants, only the fifth female president in 140 years. 

A keen runner on track to complete the 6 world major marathons. 

Jan went to the local grammar school where a large majority of the students went to university. No-one in her family had been to university before, so wasn’t really something she had considered and didn’t have any core interests that she wanted to explore at that stage and admits she didn’t really excel in Maths. Jan made the decision to decline the place offered to her at university, much to her parents’ dismay. 

As a consequence of this decision, living at home with her parents, they said she needed to get a job. She saw an advert in the local paper advertising for local accounting technicians and went along to the interview. The interviewer was a chartered accountant, he said she had good O and A levels, despite not necessarily being relevant to accountancy, and again suggested that she attended university. After declaring that she didn’t want to go to university he found her a placement at a local firm and 33 years she hasn’t looked back, despite originally planning to give it just six months and see how its goes. 

The common misconception about accountancy is that you need to be good at maths, and that’s just not the case! In Jan’s opinion, being good at maths doesn’t necessarily make you a good accountant, accountancy is about numbers, not maths, in fact the further along your career, the more you fulfil an advisory role.