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The inside track on Karen Watson: Accounts Manager

Posted on Thursday, January 11, 2024

The inside track on Karen Watson: Accounts Manager

Karen joined Alan Goldin four years ago as part of her ‘mid-life’ crisis and looking for a new direction, as she explains:

“Over the years I’d done a bit of everything, working in marketing, publishing, helping to run a small company and more recently for a plumber’s merchant, aka the flogging bogs industry! But whatever I was involved in, the aspect of the job I always enjoyed most was the financials. What I liked was the fact that with spreadsheets and reconciliations, there is an absolute, factual answer, whereas in marketing you just think maybe I could have done that better or differently. Everyone used to laugh at me because my spreadsheets were immaculate so come my 40th birthday, I decided to spread my wings!

When I first arrived here, I was an Accounts Assistant, with a lot more to learn. Paul has been so supportive, giving me time off for my exams and after I passed my Accounting Technician Diploma the company sponsored me through my Payroll Management Diploma. I now split my time between our two businesses Home Minders and Alan Goldin as Accounts Manager. I work across all areas of accounts and manage the company purchase ledger as well as processing rents received and preparing customer statements.

I spend two days a week at Alan Goldin, long established estate agents in Temple Fortune, handling their payroll. It’s always easier to be physically in the office, to deal with queries and paperwork and of course to get a feel for how business is going. My take is that a lot of tenants are keen to extend their tenancy arrangements by 24-36 months so that in these uncertain financial times they have certainty.

For Home Minders my role is to pay our landlords, making sure they know exactly where every penny has gone and to deal with tenants and their deposits. There’s a responsibility when you’re handling other peoples’ money, and you must be 100% accurate. We obviously have an obligation to ensure our landlords are correctly paid but we also work closely with our tenants and if they get into financial difficulties, we can usually work out a payment plan with them.

Karen has always been interested in property, having been an accidental landlord at one time and a tenant for more years that she cares to admit! Her present role suits every aspect of her life. “It’s not really a job because I’m doing what I enjoy even though that sounds a bit nerdy! I’d advise any young person to get on with what they’re good at and not to worry what other people think. With a teenager at home, it’s great to work locally so I can be on hand when needed. My other great love is singing. I enjoy being part of a very friendly choir who sing a wide repertoire of musical theatre, soul and Christmas carols!”