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8 Unique Career Paths In Accounting

8 Unique Career Paths In Accounting

Pursuing a career in accounting can be a rewarding path for those who enjoy numbers and problem-solving, and many people associate accounting with a nine-to-five desk job. Fortunately, there are more options available to those who have a degree in accounting other than being an accountant.

What else can you do with an accounting background? We asked eight accounting experts about their own career paths in the field, including how they got their start to show just how versatile the industry can be.


It Doesn’t Have to Be the Big Four

You don’t have to follow the traditional career path to one of the Big Four accounting anymore. You can be an accountant for any industry or any company that you’d like. I manage the finances and accounting for Arrow Lift, a stair lift and home elevator company, so you never know what kind of industry you can take your accounting expertise to.

Ken Chipman, Arrow Lift


Make a Large Impact on a Small Business

Be an accountant for a small business! Small businesses provide 55% of all jobs in the country and are responsible for 66% of all new jobs that are created. Someone with accounting and finance knowledge can make a larger impact on small businesses.

Vicky Franko, Insura


Your Industries Are Limitless

Unique careers in accounting start with unique industries. Pick an industry that excites you like social work, forensics, or business management and research the accounting and finance jobs surrounding those industries. Every company, no matter the industry, needs someone doing their accounting.

Ryan Nouis, TruPath



I majored in accounting and now run an
SEO company. People usually look puzzled when I tell them I went from being a corporate auditor to a marketer. But oddly enough, the two career paths are very similar and complement each other quite well. If I were to go back to when I was an accounting student and tell myself a piece of advice, I’d say that there are other career options other than “accountant.” Business schools tend to push accounting students down accounting career paths. But there’s so many other options when you have the “language of business” as your foundation. Don’t limit yourself to being a CPA when maybe you should be CEO.

Brett Farmiloe, Markitors


Open Your Own Firm

I graduated with a BS in Accounting in 1993. I worked as a bookkeeper and controller prior to getting my degree. I passed the CPA exam in August 1993 and secured a position in an Illinois mid-size CPA firm. In 2000, I went out on my own and prepared compilations and tax returns. After moving to Arizona, I made the choice to focus on tax planning & preparation. If you are interested in pursuing an accounting degree, be open minded to the job possibilities. And it’s a good education if you intend to be an entrepreneur.

Joanne M Elsen, CPA PC


Accountant turned Entrepreneur

My first job outside of college was accounting for an eCommerce player. I majored in economics and did a postgrad in Finance. While I hadn’t initially thought I’d start as an accountant, I quickly realized that as long as you have a steady numerical background, there is no reason you cannot train to become one. While now I run my own business, being financially adept has proven to be a skill I probably initially undervalued until now. For anyone looking to become an accountant, while dealing with numbers is critical, I’d say being organized is just as important.

Ahmed Mir, Nature and Bloom


How Can You Innovate Within Your Field?

My degrees are not in accounting but I work in marketing and SEO for a finance company. My tips for anyone interested in pursuing a career in finance or accounting would be to find out how you can innovate within your field. What you learned in school is just the beginning.

Anna Caldwell, Accredited Debt Relief


Leverage Your Accounting Knowledge in Any Job Position

I majored in accounting, but I’ve never been an accountant. Accounting is a great course of study because nearly every business in the world uses accounting somewhere, somehow. I worked as an investor and now I’m working as a consultant. In both roles, I leveraged the accounting knowledge I gained to make smarter business decisions. For those interested in accounting, don’t limit yourself to just becoming a CPA or working in Corporate Finance. You can use accounting to become a great entrepreneur, investor or consultant.

Layton Cox, Marketing Consultant


Career Spark
Career Spark