Wishing Sandra Paterson A Happy RetirementJan 20 2023
When I became an accountant ’The Olivetti Computer’ in the corner was only ever used by certain people, how times have changed!” With her Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland certificate dated 25th November 1985 proudly displayed on the wall behind her, MMG director Sandra Paterson takes time out to reflect on her 38-year career before her retirement next month.
“My love of numbers is has spanned the same time as my love for St Johnston FC! It was a school careers advisor at Perth High School that pointed me in the direction of becoming an accountant. I wasn’t too keen on the school environment so this seemed like a good alternative to being a maths teacher like I had planned. I was fast tracked onto the HND course and I’ve not looked back.
“Don’t get me wrong, it hasn’t been easy. My ambition has always been to become a partner at an accountancy firm, and in the 1980s these types of roles were mostly male dominated. In the early years I saw younger less experienced men leapfrog me on the career ladder, which was why I was delighted to join Finlaysons in 2001 with a clear path for progression. This was a great experience for twenty years that provided many opportunities to use my skills.
“My specialism was working with small to medium sized businesses to help them understand their booking keeping and tax liabilities, and I was also in charge of the payroll department for several years. ‘The Computer in the corner’ became common place for all of our daily operations and continues to be so as we adapt to ever changing legislation. This included a time of immense change when pension auto enrollment became a legal requirement. It was a lot to learn; for myself, my team and our clients.
“When Finlaysons joined MMG in 2021 my familiarity and confidence in using technology to support our clients extended further. MSTeams keep us connected, online apps replace paper ledgers and automated spreadsheets ensure that our work is produced efficiently and accurately. This is great, but I admit to feeling nostalgic when remembering the joyous moment when your hard work on an extended trial balance actually balanced correctly!
“I look back with fond memories as an accountant, and most recently as a director at MMG. Life is good and I look forward to a retirement filled with travel and new adventures. I aim to kick off my retirement with some winter sun in The Gambia in March, fulfilling my tennis dreams of watching Rafael Nadal play a tournament in Monte Carlo or Barcelona in April, and maybe a wee trip for to Vegas at the end of the year to watch the Grand Prix. In between the travel I will forever be a St Johnston FC supporter, so if you’re at the match look out for me!”