{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "After after how many years as a Senior is it embarrassing to still be a Senior?", "post_id": "60fd1c50bdc01300206a1643", "reply_count": 38, "vote_count": 7, "bowl_id": "564a5cdb94887803001dd07c", "bowl_name": "Accounting" }

After after how many years as a Senior is it embarrassing to still be a Senior?

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I feel called out OP lol. I have a CPA and have 6 years going on 7…. I have a unique career, I started in a small firm doing tax/audit so I have 3 years as a senior at a small firm and 3 years as a senior doing audit at CohnReznick. I was passed for manager promotion at CohnReznick and I am currently going to a Big 4 as a senior 3 with the expectation that I will be promoted there after the upcoming busy season. It is embarrassing looking at my resume and Linkedin but I have had no problem getting interviews and job offers with Fortune 500 companies in NY/NJ, I wanted to go to Big 4 because I genuinely like public accounting.

likesmart

I went through 2 mergers, switched firms within a year after both of those mergers, had 2 babies, got pushed into a different service line when my kids were toddlers “because it would be better for me and my family”…. Spent many extra years as a manager because I now had to learn a whole new discipline, and now after 23 years in PA I got promoted to Director. This is my last promotion, and I am fine with that and the path it took me to get to it. You do what’s best for you, everyone else can suck it! 😜

likeuplifting

I know this answer isn't really for the question you asked but maybe it's for the question that should be asked! One of the biggest issues I see time and time again is people comparing their life plan to others. Everyone is so different and wants different things in their lives. The most important question to ask is "am I happy?" And when you ask yourself that question it's important to remove any outside bias of "well other people are doing this or that and I am not". Once you are able to answer that question and if the answer is no that is when you think about what would make you happy and what steps do you need to achieve that? And if your answer to that question is yes then be happy! Choose your own life plan not based on the choices/progress of others but the choices/progress that you choose for yourself that will truly make you happy.

likehelpful

I think the same every time I see a question “is it normal” or “am I the only one”

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I think it depends on your goals and personal circumstances.

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3

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It depends on the person, but a 5th year senior is embarrassing / questionable to anyone reading your resume.

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It's almost always due to no cpa

likesmart

Senior for life is the most common outcome as an accountant. You leave public as a senior for a senior accountant role in industry and never get promoted.

likefunny

I am so tired of people selling the “once you go into industry you’re in that role forever”. It’s a lie to keep people miserable and busting their ass at B4. Your career is whatever you make it and put into it. There’s no reason for someone to be a senior accountant in industry forever if they don’t want to be.

helpful

I’ve encountered people who were a staff for 4 years and I know of senior 5’s and 6’s (no CPA) lol

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I know a senior of 20 year. She does not want to take cpa

likefunny

Omg!

Some people are perfectly happy being a long term senior. Big four needs to rethink long term career paths. Not everyone want to be a partner.

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I’d bet that the overwhelming majority of people don’t want to be long term seniors lol

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Really depends. There is a lot of outsourcing to the B4 in tax. I know people that really don’t want to managers. In those situations I’ve seen 5+ and they are definitely not embarrassed nor do people make them feel embarrassed.

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I know someone who’s a 5th or 6th year senior because they can’t pass their exams. At what point do you just give up?

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The way to do this is get the OMP to give you busy season off to study for them

likehelpfulfunny

It depends on your marketplace as well. There are some areas where promotion opportunities are not as available (think smaller town with one larger client). If you don’t have turnover on that team, you might be “stuck” at senior level if you don’t want to transfer to bigger city.

likefunny

I think its all on your goal and how you present yourself. If that is where you want to stay for a while then own it. I would like to hire someone who wants to be a senior for 10 or 15 years since you can add so much value and be easier on my code.

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In these situations you’d be better off in industry. You could become the head of tax in industry without CPA (if that’s the reason). If you’d just like to avoid additional responsibilities and don’t want to get promoted to manager, even then I’d say industry is a better place for you. Once you learn the company’s tax processes, you can just cruise.

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Senior for life haha. Most folks didn’t have their cpa if they weren’t promoted. There are some that will stay for a while because they are happy with the role/pay.

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I know seniors who have been for over a decade 🤷🏻‍♀️ they just haven’t passed exams. The ones I know do manager level work only though

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I work with a senior wrapping up their 5th year as a senior

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We have senior who has been senior since my manager was a staff 1. I’m really surprised she’s still with the firm.

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I think it would become quite awkward once that Senior is working under a partner that they started their career with. I wouldn't be able to make it after 4 years personally...I'd decide PA wasn't right for me if I couldn't prove myself for promotion. But yes, I do understand the usual reason is no CPA.

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I know of a bunch of seniors in various firms at over 5 years up to 7. They are all smart, just have not passed the cpa for their own reasons.

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