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It’s the ATT/CTA exam results day today, eek! 😬

Updated: Feb 16, 2021

It’s the ATT/CTA exam results day today, eek! 😬

How are you feeling? Scared, anxious, calm?

The last time I was waiting for exam results was January 2015. My heart still pounds on results day like it’s 2015. I always check the results and look for familiar names, I can’t help myself. It’s become a habit!

However, you are feeling… does it matter if you passed or failed? Surely, it’s the effort you put in that counts!

Over the years, I have worked with a few excellent tax advisers who have failed one or more of the CTA exams. You could compare me to them and think “she must know more or be better than them as she passed first time“. Hmmm think again, it was completely the opposite in my view!

The Hard Workers

Some of these individuals (you know who you are) worked their backsides off day and night and couldn’t make the 50% mark no matter how hard they tried. It was a combination of bad luck and being too hung up on answering the questions to the perfection and not spending the right amount of time on other questions. In the office, they were the “go to” for technical advice and assistance. I would look at them with envy when they could answer any techy question off the top of their head. I would sit there thinking “how did they get so brainy and how do I be more like them? “.

One of these said former colleagues managed to qualify after numerous exam sittings and a hell of a lot of determination and effort. It got to point where they had to redo papers they passed as they had expired. Despite these challenges, it is totally possible to do it as long as you commit and stay focused. Hats off to tax advisers who have managed to qualify against all the odds – it takes real guts and determination.

The Busy Bees

The other camp were FAR too busy to be taking exams. They had simply taken on too much. Whether it be their personal life or workload or a combo of both, they didn’t have time to commit properly to the exams. It really isn’t their fault, they want to push themselves and be superman/woman. They worked until 10pm at the office and went home for a few hours to reading the books before bed. For months, they looked like the walking dead when they came into the office and fuelled their day with a diet of coffee and adrenaline. Trust me, not a pretty sight!

The Lazy Ones

Don’t get me wrong – I have met people who deserved to fail and don’t have any excuses. They didn’t take the exams seriously, they failed to prepare and thought they could blag the exam with their intelligence alone. These people clearly need to get their acts together and deserve no sympathy. If they managed to pass this time round and are telling everyone in the office that they managed to pass with no study, karma will come to bite them at some point.

The Unfortunate Ones

There are also individuals who haven’t passed today as other life events have come up which distracted their attention away from exams such as family emergencies and tragedies. These people need a pat on the back and reassurance today; clearly it wasn’t their fault they couldn’t dedicate the time. They had enough going on which an average person would struggle to handle.

So no matter what the result is today, don’t be too hard on yourself. If you have done everything you can despite the pressures of home and work, there’s always November to smash the exams. Stay focused as it’s totally possible to pass no matter what life throws at you.

Good luck fellow tax advisers!

If you enjoyed this article, you might like: How the hell did I end up in tax?

Image sourced from Freepik

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