By: AJ Chambers | 5 May, 2023

Meet the 35 Under 35: Louise Sleightholm, KPMG

Part 7 in our series where we interview some of the winners in the 35 Under 35 campaign, highlighting young talent in Accountancy. In partnership with Accountancy Age.

We talked to Louise Sleightholm about her position as Corporate Finance Manager at KPMG, and being co-founder of two networking groups – Leeds Young Professionals and Leeds RainmakeHers.

Hi Louise, who are you and what do you do?

Hi! I’m Louise Sleightholm, Corporate Finance Manager at KPMG. Focusing on Tech and Digital Media transactions in the North of the UK. I am also the co-founder of two networking groups – Leeds Young Professionals and Leeds RainmakeHers.

What has your career journey been like, from where you started to where you are now?

I started my career at BDO in Manchester, where I spent three years in the Audit department whilst studying towards my ACA. Then, I spent three years at EY in their Transaction Services team which was great! I worked on some really interesting high profile deals in the North West. I then moved to KPMG Leeds as a Corporate Finance Manager, focussing on Tech and Digital Media businesses in the North.

I am passionate about building a strong network, which led me to launch two networking groups whilst working at KPMG. LYP (Leeds Young Professionals) in particular has gone from strength to strength with over 3,000 members and sell-out events each month.

What do you enjoy about your particular area of the accounting profession?

I love the variety of businesses I get to meet and how every day is different.

What opportunities are there now in Accountancy?

When I first started out in my career, I had no idea about all the opportunities available to accountants! It’s such an exciting profession – I have friends and old colleagues in various roles now including Investment Banking, Private Equity, and a few have even used the accounting qualification to start their own businesses!

Who or what inspires you to be even better?

Definitely my family, friends, and colleagues.

What advice would you give others looking to pursue a career in Accountancy?

I would say 100% go for it! It’s a tough few years of exams but it is worth it in the long run. There are so many opportunities for accountants and the knowledge you gain will set you up for life. 

I would also recommend joining on a graduate scheme with other trainees, because the journey is much better when you do it alongside others.

What is the best advice you’ve ever been given?

If you really want something – commit, work extremely hard and do not give up!

If you would like to apply to be shortlisted for this year’s 35 Under 35 list, please keep a look out for our updates in Summer 2023. 

View the full list of 35 Under 35 Winners for 2022 here.

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