Johnston Carmichael audit leader stands up for positive mental health

Graham Marjoribanks

Graham Marjoribanks

Partner and Head of Audit & Assurance

17 May 2024

One of Scotland’s leading audit professionals hopes to inspire colleagues to look after their wellbeing after experiencing a half-marathon mental health boost. 

Graham Marjoribanks, partner and Head of Audit at top UK independent business advisory and accountancy firm Johnston Carmichael, leads a team of 240. He spoke out as part of Mental Health Awareness Week, which ends on Sunday 19 May. 

This year’s theme is movement, and Graham, who will soon undertake the Edinburgh half-marathon to raise funds for ICAS 25, an initiative established by the ICAS Foundation to support social mobility in accountancy, has become a convert to the benefits of exercise. 

He said: “My main motivation for taking part in the ICAS 25 challenge was to raise funds to support accountancy students from disadvantaged backgrounds and help a more diverse range of people to get into accountancy careers.  

“I wasn’t a runner so I knew the training required would help me to get fit, but I didn’t anticipate how it would improve my mental wellbeing. When I am out running, I have a chance to process the day and get my thoughts together. Recently I was involved in a challenging situation that I would normally have got frustrated about, but I managed not to get too stressed, and I am convinced it was down to running.  

“It is a brilliant way to decompress – it’s too easy to get stuck behind a desk and not make time for yourself but if you don’t, you risk burnout that’s not good for you, your family or your job.” 

Graham, who has been training since the beginning of the year, said he has had “ups and downs” after illnesses including Covid.  

He added: “I’m feeling good about it now and I am ready for it.  

“I’ve got three kids, a dog, I’m busy at work, but if I can do it I hope others in the business feel empowered to do the same.  

“It doesn’t need to be running, it doesn’t even need to be exercise. It can be spending time with the kids or walking the dog. But it’s important to take care of yourself in a busy job.” 

Graham will undertake the Edinburgh half marathon on 26 May 2024. To donate to his fundraising drive, please visit his JustGiving page, here

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