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The Real Poop

Note the “count” in ac”count”ant there. The gig is all about countin’. Revenues. Expenses. Profits. And that’s about it, broadly speaking. So if you don't loooove numbers, they won’t love you back, and neither will this career. But if you do, it is really a great gig, career, numeric adventure. You can make real moolah and have a modicum of power, and as long as you don't steal from your clients, you have low risk of completely washing out and having to live on welfare like some of your brethren who wanted to be movie stars. Gut check: Do you get chills up and down your spine when balancing your checkbook? Do you still use a checkbook just because you like getting that chill? If you answered yes to either or both of these questions, you may be a born and bred bean-countin’ CPA.

Certified Public Accountants are known mainly as those who are responsible for assisting individuals and corporations with the preparation of their tax returns. However, they can also be involved in such areas as financial planning (how much cash will this new business burn next year → how much money do we need to raise now?), business auditing (Google is buying us but they need to be sure the profits we say we have are in fact the profits we have), and the design of corporate accounting systems (what are my stock options worth today anyway?). But wait! There’s more! You may also have your hands in management consulting, estate planning, financial analysis, and more. Pretty much any job description that puts normal or non-business people to sleep at dinner partiesall of this grandeur could be yours for the price of getting “certified” as a public accountant, and that doesn't mean “crazy.”

Nothing to see here, folks. Move along.