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Depression & Mental Health in the Accounting World

Episode 3. On today’s show, Former Big 4 accountant Andy Salkeld shares his story of stress, depression, attempted suicide and subsequent recovery with podcast show host Rob Brown.

Andy Salkeld is a former accountant (Big 4), corporate financier and business intelligence specialist who seemed to have it all. But Andy lives with depression and has been suicidal. Now an investor co-owner of a small business, he speaks and writes openly about mental health and depression in professional life. Key takeaways from this interview include:

➜ how accountants and CPAS often introduce themselves as what they do, not who they are, and why this is bad

➜ how the perceived stigma of mental health affects professionals like accountants

➜ the competitive ‘Darwinian’ nature of professions that involve the mind – the survival of the fittest

➜ the huge pressures accountants are under in building their career, and why any sign of weakness can be detrimental

➜ how good or not accountants are at handling change, disruption and pressure

➜ much of a professional’s self worth, identity and acceptance is wrapped up in what they can do, not who they are

➜ how accountancy is like football in being a performance business with massive pressure to get results

➜ how accounting firm leaders and cultures are rarely equipped to deal with admissions of mental health and stress

➜ why in a data driven industry, it’s hard to make decisions about complex emotions inherent in mental health

➜ how a greater acceptance of mental health and liberation of views has led to a better understanding of the impacts

➜ how accounting leaders do genuinely care but don’t always know how to help staff with mental health

➜ the importance of sharing your struggles and vulnerabilities in work situations, especially if you’re in a leadership role

➜ why nobody has all the answers to mental wellbeing, especially in times of great disruption and uncertainty

➜ an example of the chain of events that might lead someone to take their own life

➜ the song lyric that turned a suicidal depressive’s life around to now helping other professionals deal with mental health

➜ the role of therapists and counsellors in helping you articulate complex emotions and situation

When not working, Andy loves playing board games, listening to ska and pop-punk music and cooking. He lives with his cat Pika – named after a Pokémon – in Leeds, UK. Recently he has been teaching himself music from no prior knowledge using only a GameBoy. You can reach him here…

Website https://andysalkeld.com/

LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/in/andysalkeld/

NOTE TO LISTENERS:

The Accounting Influencers Podcast is a daily show with four segments coming out every Monday Martin which are repeated on the other 4 weekdays as standalone episodes, plus a bitesize highlights digest or bonus episode on Saturdays . On Sundays, listeners get a 2 min trailer for the coming week’s episodes.

Every Tuesday the show gives you a relevant news topic from the accounting and fintech world with a direct application to accountants, CPAs and bookkeepers. Great to stay informed and build your commercial acumen.

Every Wednesday and Thursday, we feature an uncut interview with top authors, leaders, thinkers and performers in the accounting and fintech world.

Every Thursday the show gives you a practical ‘here’s what works’ tips concerning a key challenge, need or strategy for accountants, CPAs and bookkeepers. Great to stay current and keep your skills topped up.

Martin and Rob love to hear from the show’s 18000+ unique listeners in 144 countries around the world. If you like the show, leave a review wherever you listen, and please recommend the show to your friends and colleagues.