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Do I need to be a maths genius to become an accountant?

Article

Do I need to be a maths genius to become an accountant?

20 Apr 2023

2 minute read

In his first speech of 2023, Rishi Sunak set out his plans to improve on numeracy skills by increasing the age which every pupil will study maths to 18. One question I get asked a lot is how strong you have to be with maths in order to become an accountant.

Do I need to be a maths genius to become an accountant? - news article image

In his first speech of 2023, Rishi Sunak set out his plans to improve on numeracy skills by increasing the age which every pupil will study maths to 18.

One question I get asked a lot is how strong you have to be with maths in order to become an accountant.

It's a common misconception that being an accountant requires you to be a mathematical genius. However, the reality is that being a successful accountant requires more than just strong maths skills. Accountants work with financial statements, balance sheets, and other documents that require a great deal of precision when it comes to numerical calculations. But while maths is certainly an important part of the job, it's not the only thing that matters. In fact, many of the skills that are most important for accountants have little to do with maths at all. For example, accountants need to have excellent analytical and critical thinking skills. They must be able to look at complex financial data and analyse it in order to identify patterns and make informed decisions. They also need to be skilled at communication, both in terms of presenting financial information to clients and collaborating with other professionals in the field.

Additionally, accountants need to be able to work well under pressure. They must be able to meet tight deadlines and handle multiple projects simultaneously. They also need to be highly organised, with strong attention to detail. These skills are important for ensuring that all financial documents are accurate and up-to-date.

Above all, when we hire new employees into Shaw Gibbs we are looking for people who will fit in with our culture and our company values of expert, respectful, innovative and collaborative.  Of course, this isn't to say that maths skills aren't important for accountants. They certainly are. But it's possible for someone to be a great accountant even if they don't have exceptional maths skills.  To be successful in this field, it's essential to have a combination of analytical, communication, organisational, and critical thinking skills.

So if you're considering a career in accounting but don't consider yourself a maths whiz, don't let that discourage you.  With the right combination of skills and the willingness to work hard, you can still achieve great success as an accountant.

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