Young CAs on how they put their 'values into action'
Your skills and experience as a CA can be put to good use in work and beyond office hours, to make a difference for good in the world.
That was the message from three young CAs at an ICAS “Values Into Action” event.
Addressing an audience of young CAs and CA students in London were Indy Hothi CA, a consultant with EY and overall winner of the 2015 One Young CA awards; Suzy Kerton CA, CFO with online accounting software business ClearBooks and ‘highly commended’ in the One Young CA awards; and Jenny Chu CA, a consultant with Deloitte and ‘commended’ in the awards.
A common theme for all here was that, as well as succeeding in their professional careers, each had also achieved a lot, outside of the world of work, on projects they were passionate about.
Indy joined the charity Khalsa Aid, which provides emergency assistance to people in need around the world, as a trustee, with the aim of helping manage the charity’s finances and strategy.
As it turned out, his role has also taken him to the frontline in places like Nepal, Haiti and most recently a refugee camp in Serbia, as well as areas of England affected by the recent floods.
He said: “I came in to offer my financial acumen, and my CA qualification… but I got involved in so much more. It’s really helped to widen my skill set.”
Indy also said: “The approach that I’ve taken is, one, to always follow my passions, and two, to try and link things that I’m involved with as much as possible… although you may be passionate about many different things, they can work simultaneously.”
Suzy (pictured above, centre) talked about her career as a CA and also her work with a charity, CRY (Cardiac Risk in the Young), who she got involved with after a close friend died of cardiac arrest at age 27.
She and her friends raised more than £18.700 for CRY, which campaigns to raise awareness and to provide free heart tests.
Suzy said: “I found people were very willing to help, so if you are interested in doing charity work my advice is to just try it. Try to do something and you can make a difference.”
She also talked about her career, which had taken her from Baker Tilly – and a secondment to Argentina – to becoming CFO of ClearBooks at the age of 26.
She advised: “Find your motivation; set a goal; and never give up!”
Jenny (pictured above) is a Finance Consultant with Deloitte and a member of the ICAS Sustainability Committee, which she joined after winning the ICAS Sustainability Essay prize in 2014.
She has played an active part in helping Deloitte become more supportive of sustainable businesses and social enterprise, as well as taking part in the firm’s Women in Leadership initiative.
Outside of work she is an alumni adviser to Enactus, a social enterprise that works with a number of projects in disadvantaged areas.
Jenny said: “One of the things that I have learned is to say ‘no’ to things; I’m really bad at saying ‘no’; if somebody asks me to do something, chances are I’ll do it, because I like to help people or because it’s a good opportunity for me to develop myself. But recognising that, there’s only so much I can do, and there’s only 24 hours in a day.
“Target the things that you want to do in the most effective way, and put your effort into something that’s substantial, rather than dabbling in lots of different things.”
Nominations for the 2016 One Young CA competition are open until 27 May 2016. The overall winner will represent ICAS at the One Young World Summit in Ottawa this September.