Ronnie Patton is ACCA president

I am so pleased and honoured that I get this chance to write my first message to you as the president of ACCA. It really is the highlight of my career.

When I began my ACCA studies in 1975, it never occurred to me that my ACCA journey would bring me to this! It is a joy to have this amazing opportunity to represent three-quarters of a million fellow members and future members for the year to come. I can’t wait to throw myself into it, and I’ll do everything in my power to serve you faithfully and well.

It is the difference between a routine job and a career with a richer meaning

The three Ps

As this is my first message to you, I’d like to share my view on how ACCA’s strategy and Council’s governance and oversight provides value for our members, as well as offering a few words about the themes I’m keen to focus on.

My themes can best be summed up as ‘Patton’s three Ps’. They encompass everything ACCA is about: purpose, people and professionalism.

‘Purpose’ goes to the heart of what ACCA is all about. It’s about the ‘why’, not the ‘what’ of our strategy, our work and our careers. It is the difference between a routine existence of generating a salary every month and pursuing a career with a richer meaning and greater personal reward than just a pay packet.

As you read this you may be thinking, ‘That’s all very well, but I have to work to pay the bills and take care of my family.’ And indeed, we all have to put food on the table and fuel in the car. But the difference I’m seeking to emphasise here is that working with a purpose sustains you, motivates you, inspires you and keeps you fresh, energetic and sharp, which leaves you better equipped and better able to make a success while also making a good living.

All routes to accountancy are valid. Our spirit of inclusion makes us stronger

Career transition

My second P, ‘people’, makes me think of three individuals I heard about recently: a former detective, an ex-snooker player and a one-time carpet-fitter. They sound like characters in a bad joke but they are actually real people who quit their jobs to pursue the ACCA qualification.

I introduce them here because they say so much about just how successfully ACCA opens up great career opportunities. There are countless pathways into accountancy. All routes are valid. Our spirit of inclusion and diversity makes us stronger.

Finally, ‘professionalism’. All I need to do to emphasise the power of this attribute is to invite you to appreciate the efforts made by all our members, united behind a common set of values, to make the world a better place. I’m looking forward to seeing that matchless devotion in serving the public good in action in the coming year.

In the meantime, I promise you I will strive to match the incredible contribution made by our outgoing president, my very good friend Joseph Owolabi. If I am as half as effective as he was, he’ll still have been twice as good as me!

Many thanks to you all, too, for your energy in making the world a better place.