What does the path to partner look like at the big 4?

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Lots of ass kissing and politics

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Happy to share. Sorry if long and rambling.

Timeline: I was in audit at Big 4 for 3.5 years , jumped to private equity for 1.5 years, then joined my current firm after moving out of major metro. Admitted to partnership at 35, elected MP at 40.

Luck: moving out of the big city was a leap of faith but seemed like the right answer for our family based on how my wife and I grew up and how we wanted to raise our family. My wife is an attorney, so we left behind A LOT of money but we were convinced it was the right answer for our family. Very fortunate to have joined a firm that was highly focused on succession planning.

Fit: smaller communities are driven by accounting and tax work. In my early career, I struggled to understand “why” I was doing what I was doing - there was no “purpose”. Our firm’s client base is filled with fantastic entrepreneurs who began with a great idea for a product or service, but inevitably (like most small businesses) they find themselves playing accountant, which is not what they got into business to do. This is where we step in to help. This is where I found my calling and purpose.

Teaching: this is an under appreciated area of our profession. As you advance in your career, you should allocate a substantial amount of time to teaching staff as well as clients.

Reading: this is the best way to gain worldly knowledge. Jim Mattis said that if you have read less than 100 books then you are functionally illiterate. We all have room to grow here. Although retired now, David Maister is still the go-to for expertise related to professional services firms.

Network: unfortunately most people misinterpret this as handing out business cards at cheesy chamber of commerce events. You should strive for real relationships with real human beings that are forged with real conversations. If people know 1) who you are and 2) what you do , then you have the recipe for building a business.

Hope that helps.

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Pain.

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Paved by the blood of your first born.

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I guess these are not the answers I was expecting. Lol

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D1. Thanks for the insight!

You got no shot lol

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