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Rise above your inner critic, says ACCA for International Women’s Day 2020


20 Feb 2020


Global webinar discusses impostor syndrome and how to tackle it

Encouraging everyone to rise above their inner critic is ACCA’s (the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) global theme for this year’s International Women’s Day.

Celebrated on the 8 March 2020, for ACCA this year’s event is an opportunity to shine a spotlight on how its members and students can thrive and make the most of future career opportunities as professional accountants.

To mark the occasion, ACCA will be holding its second Ethel Ayres Purdie webinar at 11am UK time on the 9 March called Rising above your inner critic.

Helen Brand OBE, chief executive of ACCA says: ‘For IWD 2020, we’re encouraging everyone to challenge their preconceptions and define their own route to success. Our global webinar will focus on subjects such as taking control of your next career move and rising above your inner critic – issues that resonate across gender. Our webinar is a chance for us to confront workplace bias and recognise the importance of resilience in relation to success.’

ACCA believes that the future is full of new career opportunities, and so it’s inviting people from the accountancy profession - and other professions - to join the event to ponder such questions as ‘what’s holding you back? Is it silencing your inner critic, challenging collective bias or beating imposter syndrome?’

Chairing ACCA’s webinar discussion will be Peter Williams, head of ACCA media, and he’ll be joined by expert panellists:

  • Jenny Gu, ACCA president
  • Serena Guen, CEO and founder of Suitcase magazine
  • Georgina Terry FCCA, managing director of Business & People Development Associates
  • Vee Kativhu, social influencer

Questions can be sent in advance for panellists to consider by completing the event registration page.

Helen Brand concludes: ‘Media articles and research indicate that impostor syndrome is something that both men and women experience, so our event aims to find ways to strengthen the ways in which we think about our own careers and progression, and how we can be better coaches to ourselves and others.’

Background information

  • The 2019 Imposter Syndrome Research Study shows that 49% of male respondents and 52% of female respondents had struggled with Imposter Syndrome ‘regularly’ or ‘daily’ in the past year. Source: 2019 Impostor Syndrome Research Study, Clare Josa

ACCA Facts:

  • Ethel Ayres Purdie became ACCA’s first woman member in 1909 – the first woman to be admitted to an accountancy body in the UK.
  • ACCA’s first woman president was Vera De Palma in 1980.
  • Alexandra Chin was ACCA’s first woman president from ASEAN ANZ (Malaysia) 2015 / 16.
  • Jenny Gu is ACCA’s first woman president from Greater China, for 2019 / 2020.
  • ACCA appointed its first woman chief executive, Anthea Rose, in 1993.
  • Helen Brand is ACCA’s second woman chief executive, appointed in 2008.

ACCA’s Council

  • 24/38 female = 63%
  • 14/38 male = 36%

ACCA’s Council Board

  • 6/9 female = 67%
  • 3/9 male = 33%

All staff 2019 figures

  • 61% female
  • 39% male

- ends -

For media enquiries, contact:

Monique McKenzie


T: +44 (0)20 7059 5030
M: +44 (0)7725 613 447

Twitter: @ACCANews

Helen Thompson


T: +44 (0)20 7059 5759

M: +44 (0)7725 498 654
Twitter @ACCANews

About ACCA

ACCA (the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) is the global body for professional accountants, offering business-relevant, first-choice qualifications to people of application, ability and ambition around the world who seek a rewarding career in accountancy, finance and management.

ACCA supports its 219,000 members and 527,000 students (including affiliates) in 179 countries, helping them to develop successful careers in accounting and business, with the skills required by employers. ACCA works through a network of 110 offices and centres and 7,571 Approved Employers worldwide, and 328 approved learning providers who provide high standards of learning and development.

Through its public interest remit, ACCA promotes appropriate regulation of accounting and conducts relevant research to ensure accountancy continues to grow in reputation and influence.

ACCA has introduced major innovations to its flagship qualification to ensure its members and future members continue to be the most valued, up to date and sought-after accountancy professionals globally.

Founded in 1904, ACCA has consistently held unique core values: opportunity, diversity, innovation, integrity and accountability. More information is here:


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