Suzie Boulous, CTA and Partner at Brown Wright Stein shares her journey to Partner and the role membership has played in her success.
We were lucky enough to catch up with Suzie Boulous, CTA at last week’s Women in Tax Lunch in Sydney.
Suzie is a member of The Tax Institute, and works in the area of estate planning, business succession, asset protection and restructuring.
Suzie told us what she loves about tax, why having her first daughter helped clarify her career purpose and journey to Partner, and how valuable her CTA designation has been for her career.
“I find that tax provides an interesting challenge on a day-to-day basis, and it’s that challenge that really gets me going every day and wanting to learn more,” she says.
Journey to Partnership
Whilst on maternity leave with her second child, Suzie was named a Partner at Brown Wright Stein. However, it was after having her first child, that she found a new sense of motivation and clarity about her career.
“I sat back and thought, well, what am I doing with my career and what do I want to achieve in my career?” she says.
“And a lot of those questions and self-doubts that were going through my mind were something that I had imposed upon myself.
“I had to step back and reflect and I decided that to be a good example for my daughter, in order to tell my daughter that she has choices in life, that I had to progress and consolidate my education.”
That’s when Suzie completed The Tax Institute’s Chartered Tax Adviser Program and earnt the internationally recognised a Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) designation.
Prior to this she had completed a Graduate Diploma in Applied Taxation with The Tax Institute. We asked her what continuing her education has done for her practice and how she stayed motivated.
“It was dedication to education, being supported by the Institute and those working around me to get to Partner level, but also having the inspiration on a family level to achieve it,” she explains.
“It has lifted my practice area from just pure estate planning to estate planning and tax and really broadened my abilities to provide clients with the best and more holistic service.”
Suzie’s advice to new practitioners
Suzie believes participating in networking functions like the Women In Tax National Congress coming up on the 29th of November, as well as dedicating yourself to learning is key to career success.
“That means making sure you upskill, and you keep up to date with the changes in tax and tax law.”
Suzie told us that she gained invaluable knowledge through meeting peers.
“I found that people who are working in tax around me were great mentors and helped me progress my career.”
She believes that building relationships with peers and sharing information helped strengthen her ability to provide the best service to her clients.
CTA designation gives clients confidence
We also asked Suzie about what her CTA designation meant to her.
“The CTA designation is an internationally recognised designation, which is quite important because it lends itself some credibility on a worldwide scale, but also when you're dealing with clients,” she says.
“They feel confidence in you that you have carried out some additional education and have extra qualifications in a particular area.
“Among professionals, it also creates a space where you can recognise each other and know that you, together as CTAs, have undertaken the same education and upskilling.”
What about membership?
Suzie says, “Being a member of The Tax Institute has really helped me further my career and given me an opportunity to upskill and update myself in the area of tax.”