Rugby is a business, and any good business needs a strategically minded accountant, which is where Cameron Good steps in. Cameron is a major project manager at New Zealand Rugby and is responsible for the team's commercial aspects when participating in large rugby events, such as the World Cup. His CA designation affords him the flexibility to pursue a job that lines up with his passion for sport.
Here's a look at Cameron's typical work day:
What does an average day look like for you?
With two kids, my mornings normally start between 5am and 6am when they decide to wake the house. So in between keeping them happy, I usually watch breakfast TV and check my emails on the phone while getting ready for the day. I tend to deal with people in multiple time zones so there is always something happening.
What an average day looks like depends if I am in the office or on the road. I spend a decent amount of time either travelling domestically or internationally, so you get used to working on the road with your laptop and phone. I'm lucky that my role allows me to do this.
If I am in the office, it is a rare day that doesn't have three or more hours of meetings. One of the key things I enjoy about working at New Zealand Rugby (NZR) is that there are casual meeting spaces spread across the office, which allows for impromptu meetings to talk through issues with colleagues and make decisions quickly.
Why did you become a CA?
I enjoyed accountancy at college and it was a natural progression through to studying this at Victoria University of Wellington as part of my law degree. I think Chartered Accountancy fits with my way of thinking and working, even if I am not the best technically when it comes to core accountancy skills.
What was the motivation to move client-side from a Big Four firm?
I think I realised deep down after a few years at KPMG that the long progression through to trying to become a partner at a (then) Big Five firm wasn't for me. I admired the people who had made it or were set on that path, but I struggled with the concept of logging my time working for different clients and I wanted to get more involved in one business rather than scratching the surface. I had a general plan to go and enjoy London for two years and then really think about what I was going to do when I returned to New Zealand. But an opportunity presented itself to work at a place like NZR and I grabbed it.
How has your designation enable you to have flexibility in your career?
My CA gave me instant credibility. Looking at the NZR role, professional rugby was only seven years old when I got here. There were some key people like Therese Walsh, former CEO Chris Moller and current CEO Steve Tew, who identified that they needed people with relevant professional skills to come in and help shape and grow the capability of the organisation. Having the technical and professional skills enabled me to get my foot in the door.
Likewise, when I moved through to more senior and project manager roles I needed to become more of a generalist. So having a grounding in financial management meant that my superiors had confidence for me to manage these critical bedrocks of any project.
Getting your CA opens doors to any job you could imagine. The business world will always need those skills - you just have to find out what you want to do and chase your dream.
* This interview was conducted in 2014. Cameron Good CA has since become Head of Tournaments and Competitions at New Zealand Rugby.