19 Chartered Accountants Who Overcame Their Biggest Failures and Obstacles

19 Chartered Accountants shares their motivational stories

We see successful Chartered Accountants as superhumans, but the truth is they’re normal people like you and me.

Do you want to become a successful accountant in the future? Or Looking for some inspiring CA success stories to supercharge your efforts?

We’ve compiled 19 inspiring and motivational CA success stories for you. Let’s dive right into it.

1. Dared to Pursue Chartered Accountancy at the Age of 48

To start from the beginning, I was a typical city girl (from Mumbai), always on the go. I completed my graduation in commerce and also pursued Law.

My Dad got me married at a very young age of 22. After marriage, I settled in the milk city of India, Anand, Gujarat. 

Here I got an opportunity to start my teaching career. I started as an Arts and Craft teacher and soon discovered a passion for teaching – especially mathematics.

When the Commerce stream was started in our school, I got an opportunity to teach Accountancy. Meanwhile, for professional advancement, I completed B.Ed. and M.Com.

I was quite satisfied with my job which had always provided opportunities for growth. In fact, I had already completed 23 years as a Teacher and saw myself retiring from the same. But destiny had other plans for me.

My father who himself is a Company Secretary would often say that he had done me a ‘DISFAVOUR’ by not allowing me to pursue Chartered Accountancy. Two of my brothers are Chartered Accountants and one is an MBA.

Though I was very happy with my present life, I wanted to do something about it. I thought what if I could present him with my CA degree on his 75th birthday.

At the age of 48, I enrolled for CA and started my CA journey. You can read my entire journey here - How I Dared to pursue CA at the age of 48.

2. From a Chaiwala’s Son to a Chartered Accountant

Dad had to mortgage mom’s only jewelry so that my brother Govinda and I could study in one of the best schools

My dad runs a 'TEA STALL' which we were and are very PROUD of and always helped him in the shop.

At times we were even criticized by other classmates as we came from a totally different background. It used to be tough to hear their disheartening and demoralizing comments.

Today in spite of our background I am a Chartered Accountant. The one thing required is BELIEF in self, along with PATIENCE.

How This Guy Broke All The Barriers to Become a Chartered Accountant

3. How Qualifying as a CA Transformed My Life

If I can become a Chartered Accountant anyone CAN. I grew up in a very poor family background with my mother struggling to make ends meet.

My father was an alcoholic and he expired when I was 8 years due to excessive drinking. Thus all the burden was on my mother with very little support from my extended family. But my mother fought with each and every challenge which came our way.

She worked in people's homes to feed and educate us, she was adamant that we (my bro & me) continue with our studies and we did.

I knew studying was one way to take me out of the HAND TO MOUTH life we were living in. Whatever I am today is because of my MOTHER. She knew the importance and POWER OF EDUCATION.

After graduating, I was confused as to what should I do. That is when I decided to study further and become a Chartered Accountant.

Earlier my relatives looked down upon us however after becoming a Chartered Accountant, things began to change.

Next came the second biggest challenge of getting a Job. I was rejected by so many companies because of my POOR ENGLISH. 

All this has been POSSIBLE because I studied and DID MY CA. CA took me out of poverty, from a 1RK to a 2BHK. And I can proudly say my mom is a housewife now, no longer working in people’s homes.           

A Guy From Poor Family Decided to Become CA and He Did It. How

4. Passing CA Exams After The Loss of my Father 

My father passed away in the last year of my articles. I was shattered. We lost our home, business and literally everything. Words can’t express the difficulties we faced.

My CA Final first attempt was due in May 2015 which I failed miserably. Our financial condition was deteriorating fast but I was still HOPEFUL of passing my CA exams and getting us back to normal. However once again I tried and again I failed.  I finally managed to clear my CA Final Exams in May 2017 in the 5th attempt.

For all those who feel like giving up, I have one thing to say – Do Not Lose Hope and Keep On Working Hard. You can read my journey: How I Overcame Personal Loss and Qualified as a Chartered Accountant

5. An Arts Teacher to a Chartered Accountant at the age of 43 

It all started with my daughter wanting to be a Chartered Accountant like her dad. She randomly mentioned -Maa, why don’t you start studying CA with me? This idea stayed with me and I quickly decided that YES I wanted to be a CA as well.

So I went and registered for the CA Exams and there started my CA journey of 7 long years.

I was an Art & Crafts teacher for 6 years. It was difficult to continue as a teacher without B. Ed degree so I decided to pursue B.Ed. You won't believe I FAILED in my B.Ed. exams twice. 

Since I was no longer working, I had a lot of time on hand and the idea of doing CA meant using my time effectively. You can read my journey: How I cleared my CA Exams along with my Daughter

6. Clearing CA In the First Attempt Despite Several Challenges

It was one year up since I started with my articles and was about to start my studies for CA-Final. However, life had something else in store for me.

I lost my mom in an accident. I was completely shattered, heartbroken, isolated. It was the biggest sorrow of my life.

See the height of my misfortune; I was not even able to see her for the last time. I saw my father crying for the first time in life. It was a loss, I could never come out of, a part of my heart died with her.

Days passed, but still, I was not able to study at all. I was not finding the purpose to study further, but I had to pick myself up to do it for my father now! I managed to get back on track.

It’s so true – You don’t need motivation from outside to do anything, it comes from within, and when you are in such kind of situation, you are fully charged up to do something and prove yourself.

Clearing CA became my priority. My dad continued working hard to support my education and my younger brother managed the household activities.

You can read my article: How I cleared CA Final Exams in the First Attempt After Losing My Mom

7. Getting Blind in My Right Eye To Qualifying as a Chartered Accountant

I am completely BLIND in my right eye. When I was 5 years old a sharp object went into my right eye while playing with my friends.

I was too young to feel depressed about it then. However, as I grew older I realized my family used to consider me ‘Less-Abled’ and were always worried about my future, that’s when the loss of an eye hit me

I decided to Pursue CA from ICAI. The first level was easy (CPT), and I cleared on the first attempt. However the second level exams (IPCC) I kept failing.  

There were days when I wanted to give up as I had a lot of pressure to work as my family needed me to contribute financially to the household. However, I kept reminding myself that FAILURE IS DELAY, NOT DEFEAT and kept pushing, though mentally I had decided if I fail one more time I would give up.

Luckily I cleared in the 3rd attempt.

My tough phases made me understand how I had to win in my mind first before actually winning in reality.

I used this funda and cleared CA Final exams easily.

I learned a big lesson here- We Become What We Repeatedly Keep Telling Ourselves. Positive SELF TALK can create magic. 

After becoming a CA I worked in a steel plant, then in a Bank and recently I started my CA own practice.

You can read my article: You're Your Only Limit. And This Guy Broke All Limitations

8. A CA Who Fought With Tough Times and Personal Loss

Chartered Accountancy happened to me the same way it happens to most of us- Did commerce, saw everyone do CA and I went ahead to do the same 

I cleared my CPT exams (First Level CA exams) in the first attempt and IPCC (2nd level CA exams) in the second attempt. I just had one more level to clear CA Final Exams before I was a qualified CA from ICAI. 

However, I was still UNSURE whether I was passionate about CA or not.

Then came my articleship which completely changed my view towards this course. The work I was doing developed a passion in me towards this course and its practical aspects.

However, after working for 3 years in a CA firm getting back to that ‘Zone of a Student' and 'Preparing for CA Final Exams' was not an easy task.

Problems in my personal life like losing my father to a sudden road accident came as a shock to me just ahead of my CA Final exams. 

The worry of becoming the bread earner of my family ASAP added to desperation. This certainly did not help me prepare for my exams with a clear mind.

I used to over-exaggerate at times and panic at crunch times which NEVER helped.

You can read my journey: How I struggled with personal loss and qualified as a CA

9. Overcoming Failure and Demise of my Father 

Just 7 months before my CA Final exams, I lost my father due to a sudden heart attack. That was such a tough phase for me. I realized that overnight I had to become the backbone of my family, I knew if I break down then my family will be shattered.

It was during this period that I started writing, as I was not able to share my feelings with anyone. Writing helped me to channel my emotions correctly.

I somehow appeared for the exams but failed. See, if you have faced the death of your father at such a young age there is nothing worse left to be faced! So this CA exam failure was easy to face. Then I failed CA Final exams three more times. I was a little upset but started my preparation again.

I gave my exams again in Nov’17 and cleared in the fourth attempt. I am a Chartered Accountant now. You can read my journey: From Break Down to Becoming CA Success Story

10. Disability Couldn’t Stop Him From Becoming a CA and Starting His Own Business

I was barely 18 when I lost my father. From then on, life changed. I became serious about my life and my responsibilities.

Since then I kept performing well academically and I pursued my ambition relentlessly of being a Chartered Accountant. 

On 11th July 2006, there were a series of bomb blasts in the local trains in Mumbai (India). That day I left work early, becoming a victim of the blasts. 

I suffered a ‘DEBILITATING SPINAL CORD INJURY’- A term which was unknown to me and my family. I remember the day I was first termed a ‘ PARAPLEGIC’. It changed the way I lived forever.

I made a CRUCIAL DECISION to MOVE ON from being sorry for myself and TAKING ON what life had thrown at me.

With a single-minded focus, I continued pursuing CA and finally qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 2008. However after passing my CA, getting a job was tough. Companies REJECTED ME only because I was Paraplegic.

5 years ago I started as an entrepreneur with my own firm named CA Chauhan & CoYou can read my journey: Disability is just a state of mind 

11. How I Fought With The Fear of Failure

All my life I wanted to be an – Interior Designer. However, my mother wanted me to pursue commerce so that I have a degree, which would help me get a basic job and the required financial support in the future. So, I let go of my dream of being an Interior Designer and decided to consider commerce

I struggled to complete my CA. There were a series of events that showed up. The main one being the death of my younger brother. This made studying very difficult for me.

In all, it was a journey of 14 long years with lots of ups and downs but I am like that gold who has been through all and is still shinning. Real Gold Fears NO FIRE.

You can read my journey - How I Conquered my Own Fear and Qualified as a Chartered Accountant

12. Failing 11 times in CA Exams to Becoming a Professor

I was born in a highly educated Bengali joint family in the suburb of Kolkata (India). In a family like this expectation so far as academic excellence was concerned ran very high.

Thus right from the very beginning, being the junior-most male member of my generation I was subjected to ‘intense comparison’ in the backdrop of the brilliant academic performance of my uncle’s sons who were much senior to me. 

My CA journey was not smooth sailing, it was quite painful.

On a serious note, I can say that years of struggle and unending failures have taught me the below 4 principles:

  • Failures happen for a reason. Failure can either change you or shape you.
  • All are not lucky. But please understand you are luckier than lot many. If you have to struggle – please don’t run away. Despite the struggle, you may never succeed. But someway would emerge. The struggle may take you to a different direction altogether. Nothing in life goes in vain – failures in particular.
  • Everything happens for a reason. From extreme bad, extraordinary good can emerge beyond your comprehension.
  • Hope is the – Biggest Thing, Never Lose It

He Treated His Unending Failures as Opportunities to Learn Something Every time

13. Qualified as a CA on a Wheelchair and Started an NGO

My struggle in life began when I was 6-months old – I couldn’t crawl like a normal child, could not hold my neck or sit down on my own.

I am severely disabled since birth from a rare genetic disorder ‘Spinal Muscular Atrophy‘, a progressive disorder causing severe muscular weakness.

My parents and family were my first and the biggest motivators.

Being a special child, they took special care of all my needs in my challenging journey.

Due to my illness and weak physical condition, I COULDN’T EVEN HOLD A PENCIL UPTO THE AGE OF 12 YEARS, even a small jerk resulted in my neck dropdown.

 My first career choice was to become a Doctor and serve the society, however, ‘Disability’ deprived me of the Science Stream and becoming a doctor 

 Another lucrative choice was Chartered Accountancy (CA), hence opted for Commerce.

With PATIENCE and SHEER PERSEVERANCE, I dedicated myself fully to the accomplishment of my ultimate goal and at last, became CA.

Inspirational CA Journey Proved That All You Need is Little Patience and Believe

14. The Journey of a Single Mother Who Passed the CA Exams

Tears roll down when I recall my past which is almost a decade ago. It has not been a smooth journey for me. 

Due to family pressure, I got married in 2006 and was blessed with a daughter in 2007. My in-laws were unhappy as I gave birth to a girl. In fact, when I got married I was harassed for dowry as well.

Due to all these issues, my marriage did not work out and we separated in 2007 when my daughter was only 1 month old. It was then that I realized the only solution for bringing up my daughter and giving her a good life was to complete my CA studies and become a Qualified Chartered Accountant.

My family was and is my source of strength and support. They kept motivating me and pushing me at every failure. Studying, bringing up a baby and listening to the 100 things society had to say has never been easy. 

Advice to all the WOMEN out there – Do not give up your dreams for the sake of society. If I was not a CA I might have had a difficult life depending on my parents. Read her inspirational journey of fighting all odds and becoming a chartered accountant

15. A Chartered Accountant Who Stands Tall Despite a Short Height

I STAND TALL despite my short height of 3 feet 8 inches. I am suffering from ‘Dwarfism’ and I have NEVER been demotivated by the ‘Different-Ability’ which I am suffering from,

Right from KG to date I have someone judging, criticizing, laughing at me because I am a Dwarf. However, this has never stopped me from being –the best version of myself. 

While in college I wanted to pursue a course where the world DOES NOT see me with sympathy but they see me as a person who has CROSSED ALL HURDLES and that’s when I enrolled for Chartered Accountancy (CA) course.

I gave my best and cleared my CA exams.

All went well and as the saying goes – If God takes away something from you, he replaces it with something you’ve never imagined. That’s evident in the case of my life. How He Crossed All The Hurdles and Become a Successful CA and Speaker

16. A CA Who Went From Limbless to Limitless

On 24th Jan’01 at the age of 24, with overwhelming family and friend’s support, decent education and livelihood by my stride I considered myself really fortunate. 

With sheer exuberance, I boarded a train from Ahmedabad and was singing the words thanking God for having blessed me with such a beautiful life. However that very same day I met with a fatal train accident and both of my lower limbs had to be amputated.

Overnight I was certified with 80% disability.

My parents advised me to complete my professional education which I had left mid-way and then to prioritize earnings. With their support, I resumed my Chartered Accountancy studies.

Though I had artificial limbs and could walk the very fact that I could not do certain things used to bother me subconsciously and dwelling on the past created more pain. Because of all this, I was NOT even clearing my Chartered Accountancy exams.

Nevertheless, with my dad's blessings, today I am a Qualified Chartered Accountant, CFM, M.com and Direct Tax Practitioner working in Dubai.

I am happily married and life is amazing. My wife has no severe physical constraints. I have a child who is now 9 years old. I can proudly say that CA has transformed my life from ‘disabled to differently-abled'.

How I Conquered my Mind Inspite of Losing my Limbs and Worked on my goal of becoming a Chartered Accountant

17. My Journey from a Bright Child to Failing CA 

Failure was UNHEARD OFF, school and college were a breeze. I was the ‘BRIGHT STUDENT ‘everyone thought would always succeed. And I did until I hit the May-November CA Final whirlwind.

I studied over 12 hours a day, sacrificed every fun outing my friends planned & lied to people I was supposed to meet saying I was unwell, in case they thought I was being lame studying those long hours.

So where was I going wrong? I mean what did God want me to do, more than what I had already done? Was this a sick way of the universe telling me that I was going to be nothing? And that all the years I had invested in this course, right from CPT (1st level CA Final), IPCC (2nd level CA exam) and the 3-year article-ship was all a waste?

Everyone was moving ahead, my friends were updating statuses about becoming doctors, lawyers, some completing their MBA’s and even some people a year younger becoming CA’s. And here I was, knee-deep in books, stuck, lost, should I? Is this for me? Quit?

For those who are reading this and facing the same thing, I have only a few things to say. People may tell you the universe is equal and that everything will happen in its time, but I couldn’t disagree more.

  • I CLEARED the moment I quit leaving everything to luck and God.
  • I CLEARED the moment I decided not to wallow in self-pity and get my sh*t together.
  • I CLEARED the moment I stopped blaming the ICAI for fraudulent practices.
  • I called for my papers, analyzed them and realized where I was going wrong.

From Feeling of "I'm Nothing" to Becoming a Successful CA

18. I Became a Chartered Accountant While Working Full Time

On graduating, I immediately enrolled in CA – Intermediate (equivalent to CA – IPCC as of today). I prepared for the exams and passed in Nov’04. I completed my articles and started working as a Company Secretary in Kolkata.

Since I was already a qualified CS, I never felt the urgency to appear for CA Final exams (the last exam in the CA course consisting of Group 1 & Group 2) but at the bottom of my heart I always felt – wish I could complete CA.

Days and years passed, and I got married and shifted my base to Nagpur City.

Even though professionally the work was enriching but not completing CA always haunted me.

Around April’12, my wife requested me to appear for CA Final exams again. I was reluctant to cite hectic office work, travel, and my daughter growing up. On her insistence, I filled out the exam forms for CA Final in Nov’12.

I cleared CA at the age of 34 and CMA at 36 while working at a full-time job.

I have come across many semi-qualified professionals who are working full time and are struggling to appear for their exams, let alone pass their exams. The real challenge is to pass CA Final exams or any professional exams while working full time and that is why I decided to pen my story along with tips and tools to help you crack CA or any other professional exams while working.

You can read my journey: How I Cleared CA at 34 While Working at Full Time Job

19. Failing Multiple times to Become a Chartered Accountant to Working in Bangkok & China

Does failure in exams mean you will be a failure in life? Surely NOT. 

Most of my friends had already qualified as a CA and were working in MNC’s, Big 4s, and reputed companies drawing lakhs of rupees as income and here I was earning only INR 8K per month.

did feel left behind but these things never stopped me from achieving my dream. The societal pressure was at its peak. Some people made fun of me.

Even after all this, I never let my dreams go haywire.

Fast forwarding, even after all the exam failures I got an opportunity in Bangkok and now in China in one of the best companies

You can read my journey: From failing in exams to becoming a CA to working in China

Now It’s Your Turn...

We believe you love these inspiring CA stories. Take inspiration from these guys and don’t let any obstacles stop you from following your dreams!

So what do you learn from these inspirational CA Success stories? Or do you want to share your story with us? Just drop a comment here. 

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