Career question: Aspergers and work environment


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Hi,

My name's Spencer and I'm an accounting student at University of Utah, a top 30 program. I've got about 45 credit hours left. I'm in accounting because I have an interest in finances and business, etc. I've loved the accounting classes I have taken so far. I have been majoring in music, as well. I received a 4-year music scholarship, so that explains the double-major. It even paid for some of my pre-business classes. I majored in accounting because music won't get me a job that I want.

I'll consider myself lucky just to get any reply at all, as it's a difficult situation to deal with, but I might as well try (not to mention the big "wall of text"). Kudos if you actually find it worthwhile to reply.

Yeah, I have Aspergers. Probably not the thing you want to hear. Symptoms vary based on the person, and some people overcome the problems in their youth. Unfortunately, not for me. Anyway, from an outsider's perspective I might look very shy and boring if it comes to social things. I do enjoy playing games, performing music, etc. with people, yet I dislike social activities, because I never participate in those effectively.

My career counselor recently told me I should research to find a job that works for me, and she told me to avoid being an CPA specialized in auditing. Is she being overly hopeful (it's her job to instill confidence in people, obviously)? I have no idea. If I can continue with school, that gives me the big challenge of finding out with an environment that "works for me". Problem is, any job description will describe the job rather than the work environment . Whether it's budget analyzing or financial planning, I'm sure both have something interesting on the technical side. But the description won't say much about how you have to interact with co-workers to accomplish the job.

A big issue in my career preparation is the TREMENDOUS fear of approaching people about anything career-related. I feel if I don't have work experience or great leadership experience there's no point in talking to employers of accountants. My lack of faith in myself will put the final nail in the coffin if I don't overcome that, for sure.... man, capitalism is a nightmare for slighty-disabled people who also have brains. I won't mind at all if you suggest I quit school (to save debt). I have no expectations. I just want to do the best that I can in life. I think that is everyone's responsibility.

Just one request: Could anyone to enlighten me on work environment in accounting? I figure I'd rather have to meet fewer people (hence, smaller organizations), want to avoid consulting, leading, or socializing for the most part. I've worked as a cashier at a grocery store successfully and also at a call center.... stuff like this is fine, where the high-level art of communication isn't mandatory. I hear Tax accounting might be a decent fit for me. I'm not sure what else, though....

I may have been asking the wrong questions at the wrong place... this is, again, another difficulty with pursuing something you don't know too much about....
 
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Hi there!

I don't think you should give up on your dreams of accounting because of your syndrome. In all honestly, I don't think that corporate workplaces are ideal workplaces for most people ;) Everyone has something they struggle with as far as psychology goes - even people who haven't been diagnosed with anything.

Most accountants work in fast paced office environments. You will definitely be working a lot with other people. Teamwork is a pretty common element. So that has to be something you are prepared for.

I think if you love accounting though, you will regret dropping out at this stage in the game. It can't hurt to finish the degree; you seem like you're so close.

Some accountants open their own practices. Maybe a situation like that would suit you better since you would be more independent and control your own office?
 
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Thanks for your reply, Accountancy! Very helpful.

I've been thinking of doing my own services (I do like controlling everything, doing things my own way), but I would certainly need a reputation first!

Tax accounting supposedly has a pretty good work environment, but so far doesn't seem very fun for me... then again, my class focused on individual taxes. Business taxes seem somewhat more interesting, though. I actually like journal entries, financial statements, or cost accounting more, though.

Any other accounting-ish jobs that might be good for shy people? I don't mind frequent interactions with co-workers, but having to persuade or meet new people would be hard on me.
 

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