By Thulani Sibeko CM (SA) – Chief Brand & Marketing Officer at Standard Bank Group
I graduated with an Accounting degree in December 1992 and the next step was to do articles with an Accounting firm, and then Board exams. I was getting closer to my decade long dream to become a Chartered Accountant (CA).
The dream to be a CA started in Grade 8 when I took Accounting for the first time at Phefeni Secondary School, taught by Ms Sishi. By the time I finished Grade 12 under my best Accounting teacher at Bethel, Mrs Nontando Dube, it was clear that an Acconting career was my only choice.
In January 1993 I received a response from PWC. The message was, we like you but our slots for articles are full – we can take you the following year.
At that moment I knew that I wanted to start a job and earn an income, like yesterday. I was 21 but it felt ultra urgent.
In less than a week, I had remembered that among the many Accounting courses I enjoyed at university, my next love after Accounting was Marketing. I had thoroughly enjoyed the seed planted by my Marketing professor at Sac State University, Dr Brown. I also remembered the excitement I felt with my class project about the marketing launch of Gillette Sensor for Women in the US.
By the end of January I had received a Marketing job offer from Unilever and Gillette. Both great marketing companies with amazing management development programs. I chose Gillette and started my Marketing career in February 1993.
A dream of 10 years was overturned in one week. I wasn’t sure it was the best career switch but I had prayed about it, done my express home work and sense checked with my dad. I was happy with my decision.
From that point on, only time would tell if it was the best decision to switch from Accounting to Marketing.
I’ve had great success in Marketing, if I can say so myself 😎 I’ve worked in different parts of the world, with amazing brands and companies. I’ve had a fulfilling Marketing career because I love what I do. For that, I’m blessed and grateful.
It was one of my best life decisions to pursue a Marketing career.
Because none of us knows the future for sure, our major decisions are often a case of #TimeWillTell