“Problems and setbacks are inevitable in business, it’s how you react to them that matters.” Rashesh Joshi CDir, co-founder and managing director, Alexander Rosse
Failing his ACA exams may have been the making of Rashesh Joshi CDir. Now co-founder and managing director of successful accountancy firm, Alexander Rosse, he believes the tenacity and resilience required to eventually pass has helped him build a successful career and his own business.
I can track my interest in accounting and business back to running the school tuck shop. I did well at school and was awarded a first in Maths & Management from King’s College London in 1992. I naively thought that taking my ACA qualification would be equally straightforward, but I didn’t pass first time. I felt hugely disappointed in myself, but in hindsight, that failure helped shape me into who I am today. It taught me the importance of persistence and made me a stronger person and businessman. Later in my life I would learn that these are key traits of an entrepreneur.
Once I qualified as a Chartered Accountant and having specialised in corporate finance, I was excited to begin my career with a bank. However just a year later, the banking crisis hit and I was made redundant. I had a young family, a hefty mortgage and felt like the rug had been pulled from under me. However, behind every successful man is a woman, and my wife was able to keep me grounded and recognise that this time was an opportunity to reflect.
You are either pushed by circumstance or pulled by dreams during your career, and this push was critical for me. I went back to what I enjoyed most which was working with different clients and began to work as an Interim CFO. During this time, I also set up Alexander Rosse with 2 other co-founders – a digital cloud-based accounting, tax and advisory firm. The best lessons and successes in my life have been born from ‘failure’. Problems and setbacks are inevitable in business, it’s how you react to them that matters.
In 2015 I turned to the IoD for some additional business perspective. I undertook some professional development courses and began the Chartered Director Qualification. I respect the IoD ethos that business is a combination of people, purpose, and planet. My membership has helped me understand that if you focus on supporting your clients, the money will flow as a by-product.
The IoD CDir qualification has made me a better director and given me confidence that I can handle future pressures. Coming from a professional services background, I recognise the importance of sharing and discussing any issues you face with those more experienced and the IoD provides an invaluable ecosystem for this.
My advice to fellow entrepreneurs would be threefold; firstly, trust should be the foundation of your organisation, second the purpose of your organisation should go beyond profit and thirdly a successful director must empower their employees.
Business owners of all sizes can now access fantastic accounting technology through the cloud so the role of an accountant is changing. My business is about empowering our clients with the information and expertise they need to make good decisions. I hope we are helping shift the stereotypical idea that professional services advisors are always ‘on the clock’. We are here to help our clients and we love doing it.