Don’t Sacrifice Your Happiness for Your Accounting Salary

interview with adrienne gonzalez on accounting salary

Tell us a little bit about your background

  • Art school dropout
  • Worked for Roger CPA in 2007
  • Came from the fringe of the accounting industry then went to her first CPA review class and loved it!
  • Started Junior Deputy Accountant in 2008
  • Started work for Going Concern in 2009
  • Freelancer for the Maryland Association of CPA’s

Tell us about one experience in your current position that just blew you away and that you were really excited about.

Adrienne didn’t take the traditional accounting track of attending university and becoming a CPA. However, she thinks she has been able to bring a different and valuable perspective to the industry. She does not have her CPA license so she can maintain an objective view of the issues. Adrienne uses the analogy of a sportscaster who has never played sports to describe her role in covering the accounting industry.

What was your biggest, or one of your biggest, failures in getting to where you are today?

Adrienne tries to write at Going Concern about things that will interest her readers, which sometimes can be a struggle. When Adrienne attended an event for the Maryland Association of CPA’s, she was really excited to cover the event at Going Concern. However, the article flopped once it was posted. The responses were: Why should we care? This is so dumb…. just go hang out with your friends in Maryland.

Tell us a challenge you met and how you overcame it.

When Going Concern launched, it was owned by a company called Breaking Media, which also owned Deal Breaker is aimed towards the “Wall Street Crowd.” When the blog was first launched, the Deal Breaker readers started trolling on Going Concern and the “You’re not a CPA” haters started up. She met a lot of push back in the first few months of working with GC.

What is you advice for someone starting out in his or her career?

“Don’t become a writer, as you won’t make as much money as you will in accounting.”

Adrienne doesn’t think that most people go into accounting with the idea that it will bring them the greatest happiness in life. Her biggest piece of advice is: don’t sacrifice your happiness for your accounting salary.

What is a great resource you used along the way that helped you to get where you are today?


 Crucial Conversations Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High, Second Edition By Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan, Al Switzler

Crucial Conversations Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High, Second Edition
By Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan, Al Switzler

 As OneBy Mehrdad Baghai, James Quigley

As One
By Mehrdad Baghai, James Quigley

What’s a great book that you’ve read?

Not the greatest book she has ever read: As One – Jim Quigley

Here’s a recommendation: Crucial Conversations by Kerry PattersonJoseph GrennyRon McMillan

And lastly, tell us a quote that you love and how it’s helped you reach your goals.

“I have absolutely no knowledge of anything remotely like what you just described”

Here is the video she referenced in regards to the quote. In the video the Chairman of the Federal Reserve responds to inquiries from Congressman Ron Paul. I’ve also included a picture of her tattoo, which she was kind enough to share.


Adrienne Gonzalez tatoo