00:00:02 My name is Nick H. I’m currently the Group Financial Controller for The Paper Company. My role involves managing a group of management accountants of about ten people and, and we’re responsible for putting together the profit and loss and balance sheets for all the trading divisions of The Paper Company. The main things I enjoy is the people side of things. They’re a very good team of people, always have been for the whole 13 years.
00:00:25 I was very, very good at maths. That was definitely my favourite topic, so I think from a very early age I wanted to do accountancy or banking or something like that, I was, I just enjoyed number work. I had a very good teacher and he was, he kept it entertaining and interesting. As soon as I left school, I wanted to get out and earn my own money and, sort of, pay my own way. I’m quite an independent person and didn’t want to have to rely on my mum and dad to, to look after me. I wanted to get out there and earn some money and, yeah, I, I wanted to work straight away.
00:00:51 13 and a half years ago, I started employment with Masons Paper and I started off in their Credit Control Department and over the next 13 years I managed to progress my way through to Finance Manager and currently, currently Group Financial Controller. I think a lot of people tend to move around jobs within 18 months to two years but, I think, people who are loyal to a company can, can progress if they try hard enough. All the way through I’ve had regular reviews with my Manager and finding out what I want to do for my career, and at each step I’ve explained where I want to go and they’ve, they’ve helped me get there.
00:01:24 I had a lot of study that I had to do. Initially, when I was doing the, the first stages of accountancy qualification, it was, it was not too bad. I went, went to college one afternoon every week. Once I got onto my CIMA qualifications, I had to do that in my own time; home study for seven hours on a Sunday afternoon, so my, my whole life was basically studying and it was the most challenging part of my life, I think. There was a lot of commitment but I was driven to, to do that; I wanted to actually get that piece of paper and be a qualified accountant, because I knew that it would open so many doors for me and allow me to do other more exciting jobs than, than what I was, perhaps, going to do without that.
00:02:01 I suppose my management side is the things I’ve had to develop more. I’m not necessarily a natural leader of people and I think I’ve had to work on that. So I’ve had to have a, a lot of support on that and it, it’s come from the company and from, sort of, external training courses. I probably enjoy the number side of it and the accounting side of it more than the, the management side. I think managing people is the most difficult job that you could possibly do, because people are so different and so unpredictable, whereas a set of numbers are a set of numbers; you know what they’re going to do and how they work, so that’s, that’s the most challenging bit and I prefer the number crunching.
00:02:33 I like to make sure I’ve got challenging goals, but it’s ones that I, I can achieve as well and I always drive myself to actually do those goals. I don’t need anyone pushing me into doing them. I do pride myself in what I do and then trying to achieve what I need to achieve. I think the turning point would be when I’ve actually finished by qualifications. I think that opened up quite a few doors within The Paper Company and potentially further on in my career, but that, that’s probably the biggest thing that’s happened and the biggest turning point.
00:02:58 I nearly hit the roof in my, in my house when I, when I opened the paper and it said, “Yes you’ve, you’ve passed.” I was extremely delighted. Having spent all those hours sitting in a study room to get that piece of paper that said, “Yes, you’re qualified” was, was a huge achievement. Studying and, and getting those qualifications was, was a lot of personal time; it did take a lot of time for me to get there, so I’m a very, very proud of what I’ve done there.