Why a CPA? Interview with CPA Jason DeShayes by Start Here Go Places

Uploaded by StartHereGoPlaces on 14.03.2011

I’m a CPA in a two person firm in Albuquerque, New Mexico. We are a tax and consulting firm
doing a little bit of book work but for the most part focusing on tax, compliance, and
planning and strategy. Having worked in larger firms in the past, this is a very different
environment but it’s one that I’ve gotten much more satisfaction in terms of client
engagement and relationships that have been able to get built over the last couple years.
I was actually interested in genetics back in middle school and high school and did a
genetics internship in South Carolina and when I moved to New Mexico they had a big
scheduling snafu that ends up me having to redo the whole thing and get into an accounting
class and my mom was an accountant and she later became a CPA and we ended up sticking
with it and it made a lot more sense. I took three years of it in high school which is
just kind of weird anyway to think that I had 3 years of education in accounting before
I even went to college. But I got into accounting and it did click and it was a natural fit
and it just seemed like the right path for me and whereas before I may have thought that
accounting was just kind of a bean counter, you were just cranking numbers, I found that
it’s much more strategy based and relationship based which is much more up my alley than
just being the ultra technician which is not my book. Having a mentor is extremely important
because as much as I feel you can self-direct where your path is going to be, there is so
much to be learned from experience and the tribulations someone else has gone through
and suggestions they’re going to have. I’ve been very blessed to have a mentor who is
my father in law who happens to be a successful business man and he has been a great resource
for me to bounce ideas off. I think it’s important to have that engaged relationship
with a mentor in order to be successful in life. If you use a relative as a mentor you
think about “Oh, we’ve got this family dynamic to worry about,” but there’s a
degree of that which is helpful because you can be more honest, you can be yourself without
having to necessarily worry about “How am I going to look from a business perspective.”
I think it’s important to have other mentors who are not in the family. You want someone
you can be very honest and open with and they are coming from an unbiased perspective where
you need someone detached from the situation.