Max Farrelly

Tax Associate

Hi, my name is Max and I joined Grant Thornton as a school leaver in August 2012. Many of my friends whom I went to school with went onto further education after A-levels and I, much like them, was pretty sure that was the route I was going to take as I approached the end of my studies. So, what changed? What made me do a complete U-turn and decided on entering the world of work and professional study instead?

Firstly; let me tell you a little bit about myself and how I arrived at Grant Thornton. I grew up in Hemel Hempstead and attended Queens School in Bushey, Watford. During my time at Queens’ I was involved in a number of extra- curricular events both sporting and otherwise. One of these included ‘The Career Academy’.

The Career Academy is a not for profit organisation who offer schools and sixth form colleges across the UK the opportunity to introduce their students to business ‘mentors’ and spokespeople via forums and networking events. I was fortunate that Queens’ had an existing relationship with The Career Academy and I jumped at the opportunity to attend such an event at The Institute of Education. This was where I first heard about some of the fantastic opportunities available to school leavers, and how this offered an alternative route into professional services and was becoming even more popular amongst large firms with the background of spiralling costs of student loans.

From then on my mind was made up and, after successfully getting through the selection process at Grant Thornton, I received my offer and joined the Corporation Tax team in Milton Keynes as an ATT trainee. My time in Milton Keynes was great, I had the opportunity to interact with clients from day one, worked on some interesting projects and with some great people, who not only supported me professionally but also gave me support to ensure I achieved my primary objective, my ATT exams, which I am glad to say I achieved just a matter of weeks ago!

You will hear a lot of people say this, but take it from someone who has experienced it; one of the best things about Grant Thornton is they really understand the career aspirations of people throughout the firm. The reason why I say this is because I felt , in December 2013, I wanted to broaden my experience and my knowledge and wanted to see where I could go within the firm. After having a very supportive and encouraging conversation with my line manager and the Tax Partner in Milton Keynes I was able to secure a move into a new role in Euston within the Property and Real Estate Advisory Tax team. I felt the move would not only compliment my previous experience but also help me to become a much more ‘well rounded’ business adviser, introducing me to a new set of clients and their own unique challenges.

So, what’s next for me? Well, now a month into my new role at Euston, I hope to continue to develop my knowledge and skills. I’m part of a great team who are doing a lot of interesting work and I am looking forward to the next few months. Academically, I am due to make the step up to CTA in June, which will no doubt draw on all my tax knowledge to date and much, much more!

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