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Gillian Smith

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Gillian Smith, AATF PPM

Member Since 2007

QLD

 

Gillian Smith calls her business Beat the Bookkeeping Blues. She is a Fellow Public Practice Member and has been with AAT Australia since 2007 

What made you choose to be a bookkeeper?

I sort of fell into it – when I started my business 15 years ago, a lot of guys were starting to go out on their own, guys who had trade skills but not a clue about all things office and organisational.


I was working in the building industry at the time and had two cabinet-makers who said they could do with a hand. My initial business name was KISS – koncepts in simple systems. I did everything for my clients from setting up office and computer systems to designing logos.

One of my first clients had QuickBooks on his computer, so I taught myself how to use it. I soon realised that good bookkeeping was an integral part of business. In 2006 I changed my name to Beat the Bookkeeping Blues and bookkeeping became my focus. The rest, as they say, is history.

How has your career path unfolded?

I found that after gaining 20 years of office experience in Australia and overseas, I had a great background for helping other businesses. Working in all sorts of industries has given me a good understanding of how different styles of business tick and helped me to tailor my services accordingly. 

Tell us about your present role

I am a one-woman show so I do everything for my business. I have a great mix of bookkeeping and setting up and delivering training on Reckon’s QuickBooks products. I really enjoy working with clients in a hands-on capacity, but I seem to have developed a balance of working onsite and at home.
Being a creative type, I also enjoy designing and creating my own web pages and social media sites, but I would oh, so love someone to do my filing. I’m working towards a paperless office but haven’t got there yet.

What courses have you done?

I could see that the bookkeeping industry was starting to become recognised as a profession in its own right, so I undertook my Certificate IV in Financial Services (Accounting) in 2008. (Cert IV in bookkeeping hadn’t been invented then.)
Apart from that I have qualified to be a Quickbooks (Reckon Accounts) Accredited Partner, a BAS agent and a Public Practice Member and Fellow with AAT Australia. However, as much as I realise we need all the qualifications to continue in the bookkeeping industry, I still feel that experience counts for so much.

When and why did you join AAT Australia?

I joined AAT Australia more than five years ago, because it was obvious to me that they were going to become the movers and shakers among the bookkeeping organisations. The Association has the backing of the big accounting bodies and the vision to see the huge growth in the bookkeeping profession. I love the ongoing support and member benefits.

What are some of your favourite things?

I don’t really have a role model, but admire Richard Branson. He always seems to have fun with his business ventures, and I think that’s important. What really impresses me, though – and I know this is going to sound a bit corny – is ordinary people doing extraordinary things.
Other important favourites included the colours purple and orange, any food that goes well with a good Sauv Blanc and Heraclitus’s advice to “expect the unexpected” (or you won’t find it). In the animal kingdom, Jack Russells are tops, of course – and elephants. I’d love to go and work in one of the elephant refuges in Thailand.

Could you tell us a little more about yourself?

I have a wonderful partner of 13 years, not to mention my devoted Jack Russell, Jack – now 14 years old – whom I’ve had since he was a puppy. Both are incredibly supportive and understanding in everything I choose to undertake.
My Mum and Dad, sister and best friend, nieces, nephews and now great-nieces and nephews all live here on the Sunshine Coast and we all are quite close and have fun family times together.
My main out-of-hours interest at present is GillyB Design. Coming from a creative family, I have always painted, but started designing and creating jewellery a couple of years ago and have become very passionate about it.
Then there is my 1976 Kombi camper, Lucy – and yes, I am living the dream. It is so much fun, taking Lucy for a drive:  you get lots of waves and peace signs.

 
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