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Vault View From the Top Advice From Finance Professionals

Vault View From the Top Advice From Finance Professionals

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03/12/2012

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Sections

  • Introduction
  • Amper, Politziner & Mattia, P.C
  • Bear, Stearns & Co., Inc
  • Beard Miller Company LLP
  • Berdon LLP
  • Capital One Services, Inc
  • Citrin Cooperman & Company, LLP
  • Clifton Gunderson LLP
  • Commerce Bancorp, Inc
  • Convergent Wealth Advisors, LLC
  • Credit Suisse Group
  • Crowe Chizek and Company, LLP
  • Duff & Phelps Corporation
  • Eide Bailly LLP
  • Ernst & Young Global Limited
  • First Horizon National Corporation
  • Houlihan Lokey
  • Invesco Ltd
  • KPMG LLP
  • LarsonAllen LLP
  • Legg Mason, Inc
  • Margolin, Winer & Evens LLP
  • McGladrey & Pullen, LLP
  • Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc
  • Moss Adams LLP
  • Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co
  • Parente Randolph, LLC
  • Perella Weinberg Partners LP
  • Peter J. Solomon Company
  • PNC Financial Services Group, Inc
  • Raymond James Financial, Inc
  • Reznick Group, P.C
  • Rothstein Kass
  • RSM EquiCo, Inc
  • Schneider Downs & Co., Inc
  • SS&G Financial Services, Inc
  • Tofias PC
  • Vitale, Caturano & Company, Ltd
  • WithumSmith+Brown

The media’s watching Vault! Here’s a sampling of our coverage.

“Vault has become the go-to source for career preparation.” - Crain’s New York Business “The best place on the web to prepare for a job search.” - Fortune “Vault is indispensable for locating insider information.” - Metropolitan Corporate Counsel “[Vault guides] are an INVALUABLE CliffsNotes to prepare for interviews.” - Women Lawyers Journal “For those hoping to climb the ladder of success, [Vault’s] insights are priceless.” - Money magazine “To get the unvarnished scoop, check out Vault.” - Smart Money Magazine “[Vault guides] make for excellent starting points for job hunters and should be purchased by academic libraries for their career sections [and] university career centers.” - Library Journal
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150 W.EDU) All information in this book is subject to change without notice. contact Vault. For information about permission to reproduce selections from this book. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.. Library of Congress CIP Data is available. New York 10011-1772..com Inc. for any purpose.com Inc. (212) 366-4212. All rights reserved. Vault makes no claims as to the accuracy and reliability of the information contained within and disclaims all warranties. Vault. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means.com Inc. electronic or mechanical. the Vault logo. without the express written permission of Vault.Copyright © 2008 by Vault.CMU. ISBN 10: 1-58131-649-6 ISBN 13: 978-1-58131-649-0 Printed in the United States of America.com Inc. and “the most trusted name in career informationTM” are trademarks of Vault. New York. 22nd St. .

production and marketing processes.CMU.Acknowledgments We are extremely grateful to Vault’s entire staff for all their help in the editorial. Thank you! Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. clients.EDU) . employees. family and friends. Vault also would like to acknowledge the support of our investors.

EDU) viii CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault.CMU.Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. .com Inc.

. . . . . . message boards. . . .52 First Horizon National Corporation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . .46 Eide Bailly LLP . .20 Citrin Cooperman & Company. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .92 Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .22 Clifton Gunderson LLP . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . LLP . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6 Bear. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .68 LarsonAllen LLP . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Winer & Evens LLP . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .56 Houlihan Lokey . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .CMU. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12 Berdon LLP . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .98 Perella Weinberg Partners LP . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .C. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . LLC . . . . . . . . . . . . . .36 Credit Suisse Group . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .84 Merrill Lynch & Co. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .96 Parente Randolph. . . . . . . . . . . . . . Inc. Inc. . . . . . . . .76 Margolin. . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . the Vault Finance Job Board and more. . . . LLP . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . CAREER LIBRARY ix . . . . . . . . . . . . .Table of Contents FOREWORD INTRODUCTION ADVICE FROM FINANCE PROFESSIONALS XI 1 5 Amper Politziner & Mattia. . . . . . . . . . . . LLP . . . . . . . . .102 Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .82 Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .40 Crowe Chizek and Company. . . . . . . Stearns & Co. . . . . . . . . . .16 Capital One Services. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .72 Legg Mason. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .com/finance for insider firm profiles. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10 Beard Miller Company LLP . . . . . . . . . . . . . .vault. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .64 KPMG LLPl . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .50 Ernst & Young Global Limited. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . P. . . . . . . . . . . . . .42 Duff & Phelps Corporation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .88 Moss Adams LLP . . . . . . . . .60 Invesco Ltd. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .EDU) McGladrey & Pullen. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .26 Commerce Bancorp. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .30 Convergent Wealth Advisors. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . LLC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . LLC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .150 Vitale. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Ltd. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .120 Reznick Group. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .124 Rothstein Kass . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .com Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .114 Raymond James Financial. . Solomon Company . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .140 SS&G Financial Services. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .162 Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .146 Tofias PC . . . . . . . . . . . . . .136 Scottrade Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Inc. .EDU) x CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. . . . . . Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .128 RSM EquiCo. . . .142 TD Securities Inc. . .CMU. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .C. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . P. .132 Schneider Downs & Co. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .110 Prudential Insurance Company of America . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Caturano & Company. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .106 PNC Financial Services Group. . . . . . . . Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . .158 WithumSmith+Brown . . . . . . . . . . . . . Inc. . . . . . . . .154 William Blair & Co. . . . . . . . . .View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Table of Contents Peter J. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

There are essentially four generational “waves” impacting financial services today: • The first wave is one of the largest wealth transfers in history. about making dreams come true. In addition to major changes in how the industry operates. Perhaps you’ve already decided you’d like to be part of this exciting. includes the entire spectrum of accounting firms. This decades-long.com/finance for insider firm profiles.Foreword The financial services profession is. commercial banks. This massive demographic has already begun to retire. buy homes and send their kids to college. for the purpose of this book. generational shifts are creating exciting opportunities in the field now and for many years to come. • The third and fourth waves are the Gen Xers and Millenials. On the pages of this guide. The financial services profession translates those dreams into black and white. brokerages and specialty professional firms. It is estimated that boomers will inherit trillions of dollars from their parents’ estates over the next few decades. Successful professionals have had to adapt to a changing marketplace. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. at its heart. message boards. Dreams of creating a secure future for loved ones. CAREER LIBRARY xi . investment banks. this industry has changed a great deal. evolving industry and are looking for some tips on how best to get ahead. of achieving personal wealth that enables individuals to experience everything from extreme adventure vacations to helping others in a significant way. there are many paths to success. one where the average worker participates in the stock market. of establishing businesses that enrich employees. • The second wave is the retirement of the boomers. you’ll find executives from many different disciplines sharing the steps on which their career path took them—whether those steps were taken as a result of careful forethought or in agile reaction to some of the truly seismic shifts that have altered the financial services landscape over recent decades.vault. Not so long ago. and wondering where their replacements will come from. In such a diverse and vibrant arena. post-employment period is creating new challenges and opportunities for the financial industry. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. where banks sell insurance and insurance providers offer retirement accounts. shareholders. into policies and portfolios. The upcoming exodus creates a great opening for people looking to enter the lucrative world of finance. But over the past decade or so. Many financial services companies are anxiously eyeing their experienced baby boomer employees and representatives. community and the markets they serve. puts them onto spreadsheets. and individuals decide where to invest their retirement plan assets. Speaking from my own experience—and as the president of the Society of Financial Service Professionals—I believe there are three factors within your control that will make all the difference.CMU. and helps them become reality. insurance providers.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. but most of its number is expected to live well into their 90s. Finance. these were distinct entities with specific functions. These generations represent exciting prospects as they work to secure their financial futures.

its positives and negatives. . products and regulations. CLU. Networking is the final critical “leg” supporting professional success. MSFS. James J. Look for opportunities to be part of your professional community—it will pay off in surprising and worthwhile ways. In the long run. Whether you work for a multinational operation where your colleagues are on the other side of the globe or you are an entrepreneur working for yourself—and both are real possibilities in the financial services profession—you will need to build those crucial relationships to help to advance your career. Students looking to enter this field can gain extraordinary pieces of advice and tips on how not only to cope with its sometimes intense demands but also on how to find work/life balance amid those demands. This guide can serve as a one-way version of that networking. Excellence in this field requires indepth understanding of complex and sophisticated tools. Continuing education provides that understanding and keeps financial service professionals at the top of their game. Wishing you success in all your endeavors. making sure you wouldn’t have a problem telling your client about any action you’ve taken is the best recipe for continued success. talked about in rare moments of truth. For many in this business.CMU. Tyrpak.com Inc. ChFC. First of all.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Foreword These factors—education. An eclectic mixture of executives from a broad range of companies provide an excellent peek into the finance world. AEP 2007-2008 President Society of Financial Service Professionals Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. ethics and networking—are the core values of our society. Having good professional ethics is another key component of success. our livelihoods are based upon the relationships we’ve built with our clients. there is no true profession that doesn’t require continuing education.EDU) xii CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault.

Finance was defined to include accounting. make sure you branch out in school. hard work and accurate knowledge of the many functions and skills required. commercial banks. As one of our interviewees says.Introduction What makes a good leader? Perseverance? Hard work? Tenacity? An opinion? Someone who mentors her staff until they surpass her in skill and knowledge? All this and more is encapsulated in the pages of View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals. We received many candid responses concerning balancing a family life and professional excellence in the financial world. but don’t dwell too long on your successes. a very basic skill needed to be successful.” A basic education and skill set lays the foundation for an individual. building and maintaining relationships with clients and co-workers are some of the aspects that you learn on the job. delegating. “Whether it’s understanding how marketing works or organizational behavior or business strategy. Build your knowledge bank While it might be unsurprising to advise an aspiring finance professional to concentrate on grades. how they balance work and their personal life. CAREER LIBRARY 1 . Experience is obtained through learning from both failures and successes. specialty services firms and insurance providers. you really have to study hard and get good grades in order to get a better job. partners. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.” says a CEO. where the multitude of products and services can be bewildering without proper knowledge. “School prepares you for the technical aspects of your job. you can sell anything. their experiences on the way to the top echelons of the financial world. What connected them all was the repeated insistence on diligence. but the job teaches you the practical application of it. “However corny it may sound. but over time you’ll tend to use it more than you think.” Getting soft skills on the job—even through failure While college teaches the hard skills or the technical aspects. one executive says.CMU.” They also emphasized gaining a well-rounded academic experience and taking courses outside the main workload.” Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. investment banking. shareholders and vice presidents across the finance industry. These finance professionals serve as chief executive officers. “Learn from your mistakes and failures. message boards. At first it won’t feel like the right information to really understand. “It isn’t like the retail world. while others focused on emphasizing academic excellence and solid knowledge of the many products offered by the industry. “we come out of school as technicians and we understand our trade.” says one executive while another aptly states.EDU) Communication. especially in a highly regulated industry like finance. senior directors.vault. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. and what it has all meant to them professionally as well as personally.com/finance for insider firm profiles. where if you are a good talker. what we’re not trained well to do in many cases is to communicate. the soft skills can be acquired only on the job itself. Accepting and learning from bad decisions and failure was another topic of discussion. They were asked to discuss their career.

what they all differed in was their approach to achieving that. Ten years later. While they all stressed the importance of a work/life balance.CMU. Another executive offered an example: “Work/life balance can be compared to filling a container (time) with rocks and pebbles. techno-savvy image.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Introduction It’s your career—be proactive Volunteering for assignments.” Finance is boring?—acknowledging the myth Most of the executives interviewed vocalized their concerns and surprise at how misunderstood the finance industry is. He instead ended up moving around the globe to London where he spent six years before returning to Chicago. The rocks signify the major items in your life and those are placed into the container first. yet misunderstandings remain. accounting has had to deal with the stigma of being boring and straitlaced. Like one interviewee says. She asserts the need to prioritize days.EDU) 2 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. Not so anymore. and really try to explain to them in fairly simple terms how things work. One of our executives crafted her own climb in the company by suggesting areas of improvement and demonstrating the willingness to reassign herself and craft her job around what the firm required for its growth. It’s also cultivating and growing relationships with my colleagues. or pebbles. Wall Street has been hiring public relations and advertising firms to change its “boring” image for a while now. and I was vocal on [the] best practices that we should implement. predicting a two-year stint before he returned to the city he grew up in and never originally thought of leaving. You need to aggressively go for it. The work/life balance—attainable With the long hours and working weekends. of course. Another director relocated from New York to Chicago. Another individual expressed concern over the traditional attitude about the industry viewed as a strictly number-crunching institution. move back to New York. it has often scared many graduates from stepping into the finance field for fear of losing all that’s important to them personally. The key is making sure the important items go in first. “I always thought that it would be two years in Chicago—I’d never been there before—and I would. “It’s not just about numbers.” she says about her proactiveness in creating her own niche within the firm. you need a calendar for life.” Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Take ownership of it. Once those are placed. the finance field. the less important items.” he says. I am back in Chicago. Traditionally. don’t treat it like a job. including accounting. find their space. Respondents also emphasize the need for flexibility if you want to grow with the company.” says one woman executive. has slowly but surely begun to attain a more smart. “I was an individual that was always looking for ways for the firm to provide more and more resources to our field personnel. “I’m always surprised that I frequently have to be on guard against assuming people know what I think they know. “You can’t have a calendar for work and a calendar for home.” he says.com Inc. Don’t wait for things to come to you. with corporate America becoming technologically more savvy. my clients and the business community. Yet these executives not only are successful professionally but also have managed to have a steady family life and keep their personal interests intact.” says one executive. activities and have one big picture. after spending six years in London. “Embrace your career. accepting new job responsibilities and the willingness to consider the company’s success your own priorities when our interviewees were asked for advice. .

to another respondent who describes how he has always kept Friday nights exclusively for his family. While most companies today offer formal mentoring programs. and if you stay in touch with your friends. they also stressed the importance of self-confidence and knowing that what you do is contributing to the bigger picture. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.’” one interviewee says. it was essential to keep the family in the loop. etc. however. One interviewee chose an idiom to define the fine balance: “You need to be able to see the forest through the trees. Others suggest taking full advantage of benefits like time off. you really need to have a balance between work and your life outside of work. ‘I’d like you to help me along the way. they all stress that in a work life full of curve balls and sudden developments. From one partner who travels a lot calling his wife religiously every day to a director who makes sure his spouse knows his schedule so there were no surprises. noting that most successful relationships result from a gradual informal interaction rather than a rigid assignment of a senior executive in the company by the human resources department. so take the burden off yourself and say. personally. they say. from a CEO who feels that. and in order to do that. he is telling his workers that it is okay to have other interests in life and that it isn’t all about work. Even if you are starting at the bottom. If you’re a mentee. message boards. There are certain things that just aren’t that important.” he says. Find mentors Most of our interviewees acknowledge the importance of having mentors in their lives. and they invite you for a weekend getaway. by taking a vacation himself.” Communication was yet again highlighted as a core element of keeping the balance. you want to seek someone out who can help you provide those intangibles to make you more successful. “Everything you do has an impact on someone and it’s important to understand that. our respondents emphasize informal mentor-mentee relationships. Yet another executive suggests.” says a managing principal. decision-making or personality. you should be able to spontaneously say yes. and to value the significance of the impact you might be having.EDU) They also stress being proactive in seeking someone that you want to emulate to become your mentor. spiritually and physically. know that you are part of the bigger project and that each efficient detail you craft and every suggestion you implement can impact the company in an irreversible way.com/finance for insider firm profiles. ‘I don’t have to do this. When you approach someone. “You’re going to have periods in investment banking when you’re really busy and then you’ll have a free weekend or two.” Another executive describes the feeling he gets after a good deal as very rewarding.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Introduction Another executive feels.” Know that you are making a difference—it’s more than a “deal” While executives spoke about the importance of hard work. be it in skills. “Knowing the transaction you’re doing likely is the most important transaction your client is going to do in their entire life and being able to work with them when they’re going through the entire emotional roller coaster of the deal is rewarding. As one of them says. “You want to deal with someone who feels comfortable with you in terms of his or her personality traits as well as [his or her] skills sets. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.CMU. “Make sure you have a direct conversation with your mentors and say. knowing that you might not get the chance again soon. the word “balance” implies that you have to give up something that’s very important to you to be able to conduct your life.’” she advises. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. they caution that you make sure they are someone you respect and would like to emulate. “Step back and ask yourself what is really important to you professionally..vault. CAREER LIBRARY 3 .

time management abilities and leadership qualities. are clearing the path for the future. noting that “feedback is not always an easy thing to hear. . “Figure out what your strengths are. One executive says it is important to ask for constant feedback. rigorous lifestyle that often leaves no time for oneself and family. adapting to a busy.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Introduction Others encourage mentees to seek professional associations and alumni groups to find someone outside their industry. crossed many accounting hurdles and pioneered the complex arsenal of products offered by investment and commercial banks. and. It is now your turn.” Words of advice for the next finance wizards—take charge There are many sacrifices and joys in making it to the top. One interviewee notes that the financial field requires longtime commitments.com Inc. but you can’t improve without it.” he advises.CMU. Those who have the capability will need all of the skills. These finance heads. many times. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. what it is you want to do and how much of your time you’re willing to devote to this before you pick the career. They advise prudence in assuming the level of competition in the industry and suggest narrowing down what you enjoy doing before picking a career based on remuneration or appeal.EDU) 4 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. They all found their niche in this vast industry. postponement of personal plans to accommodate professional deadlines. who have anchored many important mergers and acquisitions.

CMU.ADVICE FROM FINANCE PROFESSIONALS Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.EDU) VIEW FROM THE TOP .

Day was recently appointed to the SEC Practice Committee of the New York State Society of CPAs. Day is a consultant for the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and often leads discussions for other accountants in certain technical areas. In some ways. his success helped my success. Politziner & Mattia’s Edison. someone more senior than you and then ask for their advice or follow their example. office. Ms. With over 19 years of public accounting experience. Politziner & Mattia. serving as senior manager in the national risk & quality—SEC services group. and took various career paths.CMU. which focuses on reporting. Day is a member of the American Society of Certified Public Accountants. Ultimately my mentor ended up heading the firm’s regional office and the practice in which I was a part.e. She is also a founding trustee and treasurer for the Franklin Township Foundation of Educational Excellence.C. He was influential in getting me positions on engagements with a lot of exposure and with challenging issues. Accounting & Auditing Officer Bridget Day works in Amper. Day previously practiced with an international accounting firm for more than 13 years.. with an emphasis on banking and other financial services.EDU) 6 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. where she graduated magna cum laude. find them in someone. and as he progressed through the firm. So what helped me get somewhere was being able to take a step back and identify what I wanted to be when I grew up as a professional. Bridget Day—Officer. Ms. Francis College. disclosure and governance requirements of public companies and their executives. I started at the Big Eight at the time. Then I asked for their advice and followed in their example. New Jersey. she currently serves various banking and SEC clients in the manufacturing and distribution industry in addition to a variety of other service industries. which serves her Somerset. I have identified people that possessed traits that I aspire to attain. Q&A with Bridget Day What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? Perseverance. Ms. the New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants and the New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants. My advice: Determine what qualities you aspire to. She is a member of the firm’s quality assurance team for SEC and other engagements as well as the leader of the firm’s banking industry group. I learned when to let them lead me and followed them when necessary.Amper. . She is also a founding member and vice chair of Baker Tilly International’s financial institutions committee. Ms. dedication and drive are essential. i. Ms. albeit a mentor. I followed him.com Inc. I interviewed with a gentleman when I was in college and ended up working for him once I got to my first firm. with an emphasis on banking-related curriculum. New Jersey community. For example. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. P. Day received her BS in accounting and associate’s degree in business administration from St. and CPA qualifications to practice before the SEC and Public Company Accounting Oversight Board. and then find people who possessed those qualities.

my dad. As a professional.CMU. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. They know mommy works but I think they’re proud of the fact that I do. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. but I’d be naïve in saying that it’s perfect all the time. So keep your value systems intact at all times and remain professional. but the list never ends. I always tell everybody you can’t have a calendar for work and a calendar for home. and sometimes I have to go to a work function at night. You can’t be wishy-washy. Sometimes I need to volunteer at the school for read-alouds during the middle of the day. message boards. There are some days when it’s tough to juggle and there are days when the work/life balance doesn’t seem to be working. Its one big life. including your thought process for your conclusions and ideas. good educations for my children. intelligent.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Amper Politziner & Mattia P.vault. It’s a matter of prioritizing and using your value system as a guide. I think my work—my girls are young. my husband. I really value both my work and family life. and some things fall off the list because they aren’t necessary anymore. my children. The only way to make work/life work. Also. It all needs to be one picture. One thing that is essential for both my professional and personal life is my value system. so I have a heightened awareness of how lucky I am. you learn every day. I tell people often that I get smarter every day. sometimes I need to have a repair done on my car or home in the middle of the day. Obviously there have been some financial opportunities resulting from being a working mom. some things get done because I actually do them. Some things get done due to passage of time. effective executive? They need to be approachable. working has enabled my family to have a lovely home. you don’t work between particular hours and then get to go home. nice vacations. It serves a lot of purpose for all of us. There are constant deadlines and my to-do list never ends. is to take your value system and apply it to everything. When you work with 100 clients in 20 industries. It doesn’t have to be opinionated in a negative way.com/finance for insider firm profiles. definitive. and that my to-do list got done in its entirety once in a while.C. That is not to say that other people cannot have opinions and you may be influenced to change your mind. That doesn’t really inspire people to follow you. But. CAREER LIBRARY 7 . What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? You need to schedule your life. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. you need a calendar for life. particularly as people get older and have other distractions apart from work. but in order to lead you need to be able to make decisions and communicate those decisions. I’ve been able to provide some nicer opportunities for myself. What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? I learned to be flexible. they’re 7 and 9— is fairly seamless to them. You also need to be a good listener. overall. personable and they need to have a good value system. You need to prioritize. I wish the deadlines weren’t so hard and fast and often. I treasure my time with my family. It’s really important to realize that the day you start out with might not be the day you’ve ended up with. and some continuous learning and pride for me personally. There are days when you wish you could work all the time and days when you wish you could be home all the time. I absolutely believe they need to have an opinion. conversely you don’t have children or parents or activities that only happen after you leave the office. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? Most rewarding is the ability to interact with such a diverse number of companies. What would you most like to change? The deadlines. opinionated. But I think it’s important for people to have an opinion. it doesn’t instill confidence in your abilities and it doesn’t afford your business the opportunity to grow. and that’s something I learned from my family.

What advice would you give a young person considering a career in public accounting? It’s a wonderful option. Politiziner & Mattia. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. that exposure is invaluable. and you can use that knowledge wherever you might be in the private sector. “what about a national firm. I went from being part of a firm that probably has 40. he still is an influence in my life. whether you want to be an officer or a partner in a public accounting firm or whether you want to be a COO somewhere. I get to see how manufacturing company “A” makes their product and how manufacturing company “B” makes their product and that enables me to come up with best practices. a really good reliable car that gets me back and forth. only join the ones you have a passion for. Have you ever been mentored. There are networking opportunities everywhere. On a more personal level. The immense diversity of clients and colleagues is unsurpassed. As far as mentoring others. I’m still using the same reference material. volunteer at a cancer research organization. I respect him.000 professionals to one that has 400 to 500 professionals. I was at the biggest firm in the world and now I am at the 30 -largest firm in the United States. He left public accounting to be COO with a bank and I left the same firm [PwC] and came to Amper. at public accounting firms. A lot of times. don’t pick a 8 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault.CMU.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Amper Politziner & Mattia P. It’s not necessary that you like everything about them but instead that there are certain qualities about them that you know you’d like to learn more about or you’d like to emulate yourself. I do try and do that. I know a lot of people have different mobile technologies but trying to maintain a variety of phone numbers and things is just confusing so one calendar for everybody. some really good friends. because I started there out of school. he can still offer advice to me. and a support system. It’s a very traditional environment with a lot of hardworking people no matter how big or small the headcount. what surprised me is how small the world of public accounting is. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? You need to be flexible. but now I know better. that’s all I was interested in. I only keep one cell phone. what about a regional firm?” Before I came to Amper. You need to be passionate about it for it to work. The man that hired me out of college ended up being my mentor for years. so despite our change in career paths. So if you’re really an avid cancer research advocate and you want to volunteer in your community. my clients face similar issues and I’m referring to the same research tools. The only way it works is that I inform my family where I am going to be and when. even if you don’t have the long-term aspiration of becoming a partner or officer. and what surprised me is that despite its obvious differences a lot is exactly the same. So a lot of people are really concerned about “what if I don’t get into the big four?”. I’m still using the same thought processes. Similarly. I always tell everyone.EDU) How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? You need to find someone that you respect and you need to find someone with qualities that you aspire to. Twenty years later I am still in touch with him. What has surprised you the most about working in your industry? I started out at PricewaterhouseCoopers and now I work at Amper. Do you have any special techniques. that’s all I knew about. I get to see not only who prepares a company’s financial statements but also how they run their business. which is a big change as far as firm and client th size. and no matter what your long-term goals are. Don’t volunteer for the heart walk just because it’s a great cause. or mentored others? Both. you need to keep one constant calendar that you share with your family. we are prompted to get involved in the community and specialty groups or technical groups. At any one time I could be working with 10 or 12 different clients. particularly in public accounting where there are very few women in senior positions. I didn’t really have any awareness of anything outside the Big Eight.C. .com Inc. it’s amazing. Amper is my home away from home What really surprised me about Amper is that it’s a really great place with really smart people and I knew nothing about it.

With the overabundance of available data out there someone needs to get to the important stuff. mentor who is a good person but isn’t the professional you want to be because then you won’t have as much in common and you won’t be honest with each other during your interactions. to be done with school. for whatever reason. my maiden name was Quinn and I am first generation American. I went through college in three years. When I heard that law school was another three years on top of that. CAREER LIBRARY 9 .com/finance for insider firm profiles. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in public accounting? What would your dream career be? I do Irish dancing. and I just wanted. But I decided that there was no future in Irish dancing. I said no. message boards. One of our jobs as public accountants is to sort through that data and decide what’s accurate and what’s useful and what can help make people make the best decisions possible so that companies can do well and the economy can thrive. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. I really wanted to get out there and work. accounting’s good. it still is. people to help them disclose their information in an informative and useful fashion to the public. I decided I was going to become an accountant. If people are going to make decisions on companies for investing and other reasons. I had an opportunity to try out for the production.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. Any predictions about the future of the industry? The accounting profession is always going to be a necessity. they’re going to need people to count the beans.CMU. Now Michael Flatley owns a castle and I work at Amper! I also considered being an attorney for a while but law school scared me away. the only way to do that is with useful data.C. I knew some of the people who danced in Riverdance and I knew Michael Flatley. Just when I was about to graduate from college.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Amper Politziner & Mattia P. the first Riverdance came out. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.vault. I took a semester of advanced credits from high school with me. Irish culture was very important in my family and to me personally. I worked and I commuted to school. Regardless of whether a business does well or not. and then went to school over the summer.

I utilized my experience and skills in the financial arena as well as my expanding product knowledge to tackle my new role. a self-starter.Bear. and this may limit their ability to excel and grow.CMU.EDU) What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? The most rewarding aspect of my career is managing to find balance in my life between my career and my family. I moved to the Japan office to undertake a management role in a similar department. people need to take risks. Ms. Tracy Lowery Whille—Global Director of Compliance Global Director of Compliance Tracy Lowery Whille joined Bear Stearns after spending four years at Lehman Brothers as the director of fixed income and mortgage capital compliance. I was promoted to the global head of compliance at Bear Stearns. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. My first job was a financial analyst at a competing firm serving in a proprietary accounting and risk analysis role. I was recruited by another firm to set up a fixed income compliance department. . effective executive to be open-minded. Prior to that. show initiative and strive to achieve their fullest potential.. Stearns & Co. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. Whille received her MBA and a BS in accounting from Seton Hall University. When I returned. I supported the fixed income markets and after a few years. Ms. and I am blessed to not only have a successful career but also a good family life. determined and well rounded. I work in an extremely fast-paced and challenging environment. What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? I think in the classroom people usually take very little risks whereas in the business world. and the FINRA Compliance Advisory Group. Another four years after that. I was approached by Bear Stearns to set up a similar department. and Asia. Q&A with Tracy Whille What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? I began my career with an accounting degree and a MBA with a concentration in finance. SIFMA Compliance and Legal Executive Committee. effective executive? It is important for a good. The role was similar in that it was still in the fixed income space. After five years. I was now responsible for the legal and regulatory aspects of the business as opposed to the financial aspects. Whille is a member of the FINRA Fixed Income Committee. however the focus was much different. Inc. people become too focused on gauging their performance solely on a grade. Ms. Sometimes in the classroom. both in the U. 10 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. in order to be successful.com Inc. Within the first six months.S. I was asked to take a senior role in compliance supporting fixed income. Whille spent 14 years at Goldman Sachs working in the fixed income currency and commodities compliance department as a senior compliance officer and in the controllers department as a manager of proprietary accounting and risk analysis for fixed income products.

Stearns & Co. Do you have any special techniques. today. I always say. Inc. and a logical career choice with that educational background was a financial analyst at a Wall Street firm. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www.vault. whether they have been people that I ascribe to be like or have provided bits and pieces of advice along the way. message boards. and as a woman in a high-profile industry at a high-profile firm. If possible. I switch gears when I am not here and focus on my family. Have you ever been mentored.. Any predictions about the future of the industry? This industry will always be dynamic and unpredictable. I think life presents opportunities and you look to people that you admire and establish relationships with them. or mentored others? I have never been formally mentored. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? The first thing is be true to yourself. look at your strengths and weaknesses. People should not fool themselves as to the level of competition out there. Then go and chase your dreams! Also. I have mentored people throughout my career. and either they see something in you or you see something in them. It’s usually somebody you worked for or somebody you worked with. I went to school for accounting and got an MBA. my boys see the role of women in a totally different light than many others. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? I really didn’t consider any other career or life choices. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. and decide what type of business you want to pursue. My children have the unique opportunity to view successful working women as the norm and not an exception. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? I think the work/life balance has made me a better manager and more productive.CMU. Firms such as Bear Stearns sponsor formal mentoring programs for young adults outside the firm. I realized that I would have enjoyed and made a great veterinarian—as I love animal—but at that point. If you were not in the field. CAREER LIBRARY 11 .View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Bear. Always strive to get the best grades that you can and don’t wait until tomorrow or next semester to get serious about school. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? I’m the mother of three boys. So if I had to do it again.com/finance for insider firm profiles. what would your dream career be now? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. and there within lies its beauty. I thought it was too late to start all over again. my biggest achievement to the women’s initiative is that I’m raising three boys. grades are much more important than when I was in school. How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? I don’t think you find a mentor. I may have been a vet. psychologically. There have been people throughout my life that I have considered mentors. I recommend getting involved in mentoring. I’m definitely available for phone calls and e-mails but.EDU) After working for several years. I am able to work very hard while I’m in the office and yet turn it off when I leave. whether it is through an organized program or informally.

and direction for the firm’s 15 offices and over 550 employees. teamwork. a past Chairman of the Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants Financial Institution committee and the Annual Statewide Financial Institution Conference. Mr. As chairman and CEO. Stoltzfus is a certified public accountant licensed in Pennsylvania. guidance to its partners and management team. such as communication skills.CMU. and a board member and past president of the Hawk Mountain of Boy Scouts of America.com Inc. Manufacturers Association of Berks County. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. including experience with an international accounting firm. I practiced and demonstrated excellent client relationship building skills. the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. Stoltzfus specializes in providing services to community financial institutions and SEC reporting companies. While technical skills are the foundation. and ultimately this experience led to management opportunities with the firm. a member of the Berks Economic Partnership. I was given opportunities to manage larger engagements. Mr. Mr. By exhibiting leadership in the practice of accounting. he has governance and management responsibilities within the firm. He also serves as an audit partner. Stoltzfus has been in the auditing and business consulting field for more than 30 years. then a large practice group. the National Banking & Savings Institutions Committee and an advisory board member of the Shippensburg University School of Business. but fellow partners. I developed a strong understanding of business issues that has translated into the ability to address the challenges of running a multimillion-dollar organization. the Pennsylvania Bankers Association. He is also a past member of the AICPA National Banking & Savings Institution Committee and it’s Regulatory Task Force and the Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants’ Financial Institutions Committee. Stoltzfus provides strategic vision for the firm. As an accountant. Mr. Berks Business Executives Forum. Stoltzfus received his BA in accounting from Shippensburg University. In addition.EDU) What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? No business school can adequately prepare you for the requirements of the job. many so-called “soft skills” have been integral to my career growth. Stoltzfus oversees the firm and its executive management team. the New Jersey Bankers Association. an associate member of the Pennsylvania Association of Community Banks. Mr. Q&A with Lamar Stoltzfus What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? There were many aspects of my career that served as the foundation for the position I now hold. Stoltzfus—Chairman and CEO Chairman and CEO Lamar R. I 12 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. He has developed a broad and extensive background in providing auditing and accounting services to a wide variety of organizations primarily in the financial services and manufacturing industries. concurring review partner or client service partner on selected engagements. New Jersey and Delaware.Beard Miller Company LLP Lamar R. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. which have translated into the ability to build relationships with not only clients. leadership and consensus building. staff and others that I interact with daily as firm chairman. .

It taught me to treat others with respect. my children have seen the work ethic. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. My advice to young professionals is to learn from your mistakes and failures. There have been many positive effects for my family stemming from my success in the field of accounting. accounting is a dynamic and changing business. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? There is much more variety in the field of accounting than I expected as I entered the profession after college. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. Experience is obtained through learning from both failures and successes. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? What would you most like to change? The most rewarding aspect of my career has been to see the growth and success of our firm. leadership and accomplishments. A good leader is a visionary. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. set appropriate goals to be accomplished and work together as a team to be successful. I’ve been fortunate to be able to follow the career track of my choice and have the opportunities to advance and grow. but can be effectively accomplished. and in turn the business. with all the inherent challenge that comes with running a business. At the same time. As a college student. sports and civic activities. On the technical side. I had no idea of the opportunities that existed and the depth and breadth of the choices that would be presented to me over the course of my career. Take advantage of internships and shadowing experiences. CAREER LIBRARY 13 .EDU) Try to get as much practical experience as you can before you enter the job market. I wish I would have been more focused on these activities sooner in my career. which they now carry into their own pursuits. I’ve learned much of what it takes to be a leader from a business executive whose approach was to intimidate and humiliate staff into what he believed to be the appropriate course of action. or mentored others? Yes. it took some time until I discovered that I had the aptitude and interest in management and business development. but don’t dwell too long on your successes. In addition to strong family values. setting high standards for yourself and others is critical to personal and professional success. our paths crossed again when he served as a business consultant for some of our clients. This will help you understand if it is the right career for you. highly functional and productive team. While it has all worked out pretty well. not in my own individual accomplishments. As an industry. passion. effective executive? Being an effective leader requires an even disposition and the ability to be compassionate. often splitting my workday around my family and personal commitments. conferences and networking with my peers.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Beard Miller Company LLP I consider myself a lifelong learner and take advantage of opportunities to expand my business knowledge through professional programs. message boards. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any special techniques.vault. I was actively involved in my family’s activities and attended all of my children’s school. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? Balancing work and family life requires planning and structure.CMU. the practice of accounting requires more interpretation and judgment than presented in the classroom. I take great pride in the accomplishments of the firm. Have you ever been mentored. I did this by planning my workday around these activities. get you ahead of the curve on job offers and help you become acclimated to the profession more quickly. is goaloriented and focused on building a dynamic. Ultimately.com/finance for insider firm profiles. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.

Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. rather than a friend or co-worker with similar background. I also thought I might like to be a college professor after 20 years or so of professional practice.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Beard Miller Company LLP I suggest choosing a mentor with different skills & experience than your own.com Inc. I expect that the accounting industry will continue to become more regulated. The role of accounting will become more prominent in the national and world economy. we developed a strong relationship and I learned much about the business aspect of serving clients. I can’t imagine doing anything else. Interestingly. Any predictions about the future of the industry? In the future. and business environment. . what would your dream career be now? I always wanted to run my own business. being a partner in an accounting firm is very much like running your own business. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? If you were not in the field. Honestly.EDU) 14 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault.CMU. I gained a new respect for his knowledge and business acumen in observing him working with our clients and in time. with more international implications and increasing leverage of technology.

” — Lamar R.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Beard Miller Company LLP “Learn from your mistakes and failures. Stoltzfus.CMU.vault. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. CAREER LIBRARY 15 . Experience is obtained through learning from both failures and successes.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. Beard Miller Company LLP Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.com/finance for insider firm profiles. but don’t dwell too long on your successes. message boards. Chairman & CEO.

Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. I feel like I’m making a difference in people’s lives. especially the clients. 16 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. I supplemented what I was learning at work with school to further enhance my abilities. Once I was with Berdon for a while. Ditman has developed a specialty in the area of trust and estate taxation and financial planning. Breaking your suggested technical solutions down into understandable terms isn’t always easy since accounting and tax terminology can seem like a foreign language to those outside the profession. and picking up ideas and techniques. I recognized that everything was built on technical excellence. for more than two decades.Berdon LLP Scott T. I saw that I wanted to build a career here and aspire to be a partner. so I made sure I found the time to go back to school to get my MBA in tax in order to build a more solid technical foundation. I began to take a wider view of my role and expand my concept of technical excellence to include learning how to build good relationships with all kinds of people— clients. Mr. An important step in this process is learning to first listen to what the client really wants. I decided to learn by watching other professionals and firm leaders. outside professionals and the people within the firm. . and this is what got me on the road to becoming a partner. Ditman What are steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? From the day I started at Berdon. As one of the leaders of Berdon’s personal wealth management group. In addition. your clients will be confident that what you are recommending will help them meet their goals and needs. Mr. or may not be able to fully articulate it. Ditman. I understood and bought into the firm’s concept of accountant as advisor. Ditman has been with Berdon LLP.CMU. CPA/PFS—Tax Partner Partner Scott T. So asking questions that bring you closer to the need is key. I also get a kick out of learning new things every day. He obtained his license as a certified public accountant in New York in 1984. I knew I wanted to be a tax professional. Mr. but also outside professionals and co-workers. Also. he has earned the designation of Personal Financial Specialist (PFS)—the AICPA’s recognition for excellence—in estate and financial planning.com Inc. Q&A with Scott T. What are some of the things that you learned on the job and not necessarily in the classroom? The most important thing I learned was how to “bridge the gap” and connect the client’s needs to the best technical solutions… and do it in a way that is readily understandable by the client. I always challenge myself to make sure I’m growing and improving in both technical and nontechnical areas.EDU) What do you think is the most rewarding aspect of your career? The most important thing to me is that every day when I come to the office. Ditman advises many of the firm’s most prominent high-net-worth individual and family/owner-managed business clients. And sometimes the client may not be sure of what he wants or needs. Ditman received his BS in accounting from Brooklyn College and an MBA in taxation at Baruch College. a full-service accounting and advisory firm. But when you do bridge that gap.

Some of the techniques I use to achieve this include planning around my priorities. In this way. people are always looking to you for direction so it’s important to be consistent.CMU. You should be able to demonstrate your firm’s vision—both in words and in action—to those within and outside the firm. To be effective. broadcasting and on the Web. do my work. objective advice based on what’s important to them while always keeping their big picture in mind.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Berdon LLP If you had a choice. I help them stay on track and not get caught up with the latest craze or product. it is very important to always keep the client’s big picture in mind.com/finance for insider firm profiles. I cut through all the information overload and make sure that no matter what aspect of their financial life I’m working on. based on the roles and the goals that I have set for myself. Instead. there is an unbelievable amount of information out there with so many differing opinions and so much contradictory advice being expressed in print. I see it as my role to offer our clients independent. my focus remains on what needs to be done to meet the client’s goals. Early in my career. This confidence and sense of accomplishment contributes to me being a better family member and friend. I was surprised at just how complicated and confusing it could be for clients. I’ve found that if you’re respectful of people and value their different ways of looking at things. But. but is not necessarily that important. but also being sensitive to their needs. I look at myself in a holistic way. rather than to what appears to be urgent. What do you think are some personality traits or attributes that make for a good. Also. I don’t say from 8 in the morning until 6 at night I’m a tax partner and afterwards I’m a spouse or a friend. methods or philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional at the same time? I try not to compartmentalize myself. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. effective executive? A good executive needs to be a good listener and that means not only listening to clients and coworkers.vault. message boards. and not have to deal with the people aspect of the job. the collaboration and synergy can yield results that are exponentially greater than what any one person could have produced. From there. Today. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? It’s had a very positive impact on my personal life. I first set long-term goals—what I want to accomplish over the next year. Do you have any special techniques. stay focused and help make a positive impact in places where you can be effective and don’t get bogged down in areas where you cannot make an immediate impact. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. it’s certainly been financially rewarding. Then I break it down into weekly goals. And there is great value in showing people that you’re passionate about your work and having fun doing what you’re doing. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. CAREER LIBRARY 17 . Within my day-to-day. what would you most like to change? Sometimes I wish I could just sit at my desk. Because I’ve been successful. patient.EDU) How do you deal with everything? Any special techniques that help you deal with the entire information overload? I try to stay very grounded. I take a “first things first” approach. persistent and forward thinking. I create day-to-day to-do lists for both my work and personal life. Listening to other people’s points of view can be very time consuming and seems inefficient. I like what I’m doing and that makes me feel good about myself. I try to devote time to what’s most important in my business and personal life based on the priorities that I have set. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? For clients. whether they’re personal or business-related. As I’ve said. As a leader and an effective executive.

What’s funny is that if you asked him today. Ask questions and if you find someone you want to emulate. try to work with that person. All the successful businesspeople I know are very grounded in the numbers. he told me that he would personally review it. So don’t be shy.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Berdon LLP What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance or accounting? Accounting in particular is a great profession and I strongly encourage anyone who wants to consider it to do so. Having an accounting background builds a broad foundation for everything that goes on in the business world and it can open up many opportunities.com Inc. “But you’re the head of the department!” He explained that there was no one else who was as knowledgeable in this area. then what would your dream career be? Oh. My niece was just in from Boston and we had a conversation because she isn’t sure what she wants to do with her life. “Here is one of the head guys at the firm and he’s brilliant. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding to enter accounting? I have played the trumpet since I was nine years old and always wanted to be a professional trumpet player. But. so she basically told me I was going to be an accountant and that was the end of that. he asked me to prepare an estate tax return. You don’t have to go up to someone and say “Hey. I don’t regret my decision at all! Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. you can work for a company. you should follow your passion and find something you can enjoy doing every day. If I get involved in this area. I know that she is a hardworking person who is very good with numbers. Have you ever been mentored. It was also through his mentoring that I learned how to communicate highly technical issues to clients in a way that they could easily understand. One or the other. asked questions and tried to absorb everything. Have you mentored others? Yes. Or shortstop for the Yankees. because I made a point of paying attention to everything he did. that was my dream. He never sat down and said. it’s very flattering when somebody comes up to me and says. it’s the right thing to do and it’s good for the firm. most importantly. a person who’s good at what he does generally won’t shy away from someone seeking guidance. or even open your own business. When I heard him say that. . and she knew I was very good at math. definitely professional musician.CMU. the Yankees already have a good one of those.” So I decided to specialize in estate and financial planning. absolutely. “I love working with you. I played professionally when I was in high school and college. When I was done. Of course. I said. I suggested that she take a few accounting courses to try it out. I learned through his example. In fact. I was very fortunate to have the experience of working with him and drawing on his ideas and insights. I could play an important role and I would be able to work directly with him. She took off half a year from school and is working full time. “Here.EDU) If you were not in the field. But my mother was an accountant. You’re so helpful!” I’ll spend as much time with them as they need. You don’t have to have a career in public accounting like I do.” But. I encourage people to ask questions and to do what I did with our former senior tax partner. he’d probably say he was never formally my mentor. But. the head of our tax department was the most incredible tax professional I’d ever met. I said. because it’s good for them. now I’m going to teach you something.” I just observed. For years and right up until I started working at Berdon. or mentored others? When I started at Berdon 25 years ago. At one point. An accounting background gives you many options and career paths to consider and it can be very rewarding financially. I want you to be my mentor. 18 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault.

BlackBerries and ongoing globalization. voicemail.CMU.vault. the numbers are still the foundation for everything. as fast and complicated as things get. Accounting is critical because not only is it the means by which we keep score of what’s going on. CAREER LIBRARY 19 .com/finance for insider firm profiles. message boards. but the projections and models that we develop serve as a great starting point in helping people intelligently plan for the future. I would say that in the business world. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. cutting-edge profession. So. But.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. accounting is always going to be a very important. predictions are difficult.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Berdon LLP Any predictions about the future of the industry? With everybody and everything moving so quickly—e-mail. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.

CMU. I have had the opportunity to have good mentors along with tools and resources available to help me learn new skills and advance my current skill set. Being able to provide services. Prior to working for Capital One Bank. . went to school there. At North Fork Bank. Q&A with Ramona Lopez What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? I worked hard. Inc. New York. Several years later. Capital One Bank Branch Manager Ramona Lopez has spent more than 30 years in banking. so that I could advance. I made it my business to learn as much as I was could. She is currently responsible for two branches of Capital One Bank in Manhattan. to people who really need it is extremely satisfying. with a wealth of experience in customer service. community outreach and management. He insisted I take over the operations for that branch. she moved into a management role. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. and now being a branch manager in the neighborhood in which I grew up is extremely rewarding to me. It was important to me to understand all aspects of my job and how it related to the larger company strategy.com Inc. Lopez attended the American Institute of Banking and currently resides in New York City. Lopez worked for Commercial Bank of New York. Lopez’s career began as a teller in Long Island City. which was acquired by North Fork Bank. Queens. was an inspiration and role model to me. I was always interested in advancement and career development. most of my learning has been on the job. I was transferred to the Wall Street area. After some time. including teaching financial education.Capital One Services. Richard Reinhardt. Ms. Going back to school helped me advance my career while I continued learning new skills. I was running the operations for several downtown branches. Ms. It was during this time that I learned to manage people and run all banking operations. What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? While working in banking. It was there that I had the opportunity to assist with client inquiries. My banking career began as a teller in Long Island City. Ramona Lopez—Branch Manager. About a year after I started. 20 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. Queens. I was very comfortable dealing with customers and when a position opened I was transferred to a new role in customer service. and over several years. and further acquired by Capital One in 2006. and now Capital One. I was transferred to another location also in Long Island City as an assistant head teller. Ms. I grew up in the projects in Spanish Harlem. a bank manager.EDU) What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? What would you most like to change? I attended the American Institute of Banking after my children were older.

Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. but the reward comes from seeing others achieve economic self-sufficiency. There’s room to grow and learn along the way. You have to know how to be a good role model and mentor to your associates. or mentored others? How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? I think that being a mentor is rewarding in that you are passing along your lessons learned to someone else. their ability to buy their own home. Knowing that you are making a tangible and important difference in someone’s life. I think reaching out and teaching members of the community about this critical life skill is something that’s overlooked when people talk about financial services.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Capital One Services. or save enough for retirement or send their kids to college. I have always enjoyed the idea of being in politics. it’s not just about business. Inc. I was fortunate to have people who believed in me and encouraged me to follow my dreams. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? If you were not in the field. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? The financial services industry isn’t just about providing services or products. I think there’s something to be said for maintaining a positive attitude. reaching out to others who you can relate to and who can guide you is important to career development. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. is a substantial reward. Each step of your career typically has different needs and responsibilities.CMU. Writing checks and managing a household budget are not topics typically taught in schools. or credit cards or even health care finance.com/finance for insider firm profiles. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? There’s always a fine line to tow with the work/life balance but it’s something you need to do. Life has a way. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any special techniques. but how can you truly be involved and make a difference in the communities where you live and work. be able to highlight their strengths. As a manager. what would your dream career be now? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. You have to take control of your career and finding mentors is just one step. I work hard to keep that attitude and it gets me through difficult times as well. you could work in banking. I did actually pursue being an airline stewardess. I learned a lot through trial and error. But if I had to choose.vault. I would also say that the industry is vast and there are a variety of careers to be explored in financial services. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? I would tell them how rewarding it is to be involved at the community level. I’m quite content with where I am and have not considered anything else. CAREER LIBRARY 21 . Even at just one company. Have you ever been mentored. though. effective executive? To run a bank branch you have to be aware of many people who depend on you. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. such as Capital One. It’s quite a rewarding and satisfying job. It’s also important to reach out to others and ask them to mentor you.EDU) When I was younger. of throwing you curve balls and now here I am in financial services. message boards. It’s up to you to guide your own career. You have to be able to build relationships with consumers and small businesses in the community and play a role in giving back.

my position has changed. Pennsylvania. He is a member of the New York and New Jersey Society of CPAs as well as the American Institute of CPAs. He is a recognized expert in the fields of mergers and acquisitions. Springfield. Under his leadership. making them think deeper and helping them think in a way that will make them be the best that they can be. What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? I learned how to manage people. Every step of the way as we’ve grown. and I learned that discipline in the organization with both partners and the staff is critical for success. Q&A with Joel Cooperman What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? I worked as an accountant for a firm in New York City for four years and then.EDU) What would you most like to change? I would love to eliminate e-mails. including New York City. New Jersey. .com Inc. I take a great deal of pride in being able to help them maximize their potential. but one of the most rewarding things is the growth in the staff and in the partners. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Cooperman received his BS from Fairleigh Dickinson University. New York. White Plains. There’s no school for managing partners. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? I’m not sure if it’s the most rewarding. with the help of some clients. LLP Joel Cooperman—Founding & Managing Partner Founding and managing partner of Citrin Cooperman & Company.Citrin Cooperman & Company. I learned how to be fair. employment compensation. started Citrin Cooperman & Company in 1979. Mr. so I’ve had to adjust as my firm is growing and in effect manage it differently and grow into the position.CMU. I feel very pleased and proud of the fact that the staff and the partners have done as well as they have. 22 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. corporate financing and strategic planning. I learned how to be consistent in my approach. Joel Cooperman has more than 30 years of experience providing clients with highlevel consulting services. obviously beyond making money and having a respected firm. My position has evolved from being one partner in a two-partner firm to managing about 330 to 340 people. the firm has grown to more than 65 partners and 300 staffers in four offices. profit enhancement. and Philadelphia. When I look back. LLP. both professionally and financially.

attended father-daughter dances and took many wonderful family vacations over the years. and I can say that at 54 it’s been an interesting journey. what their key problems are. how much you’ve changed. I love sports so I got into coaching with the kids as a way to be away from work and have the ability to have a relationship with them. But I would tell you that I am aware of a work/life balance and I try very hard. They’re little bit older now but they live close by so I get to see them all the time. how intense every day still is. as their home and take a lot of pride in what we’ve built together. consistency is critical. things that were critically important when I was 35 don’t seem all that important today. organizational skills are critical. I’ve also learned that as you get older. discipline is critical. I’m also a little surprised—in a good way—to see how many people work here in different positions in the firm and view the firm. but thankfully I don’t have very many regrets. my very best to achieve it. You need to be firm with people. I think it’s very important to have an open exchange with all your people. There’s an old adage that you want to treat people the way you want to be treated. I’m also very surprised about how well respected accountants have become in the business community. Do you have any special techniques. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? I see my children all the time.EDU) I am surprised that after having the business for 28 years. When they call me. I think that when you look back over 30 years. CAREER LIBRARY 23 . you really see how far you’ve come. what their gross profits are. Without prioritizing. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. The bad aspect is that this work is an intense. I coached my sons’ sports teams. time-consuming business and commuting makes it extra difficult.vault. It can be tempting to bring the pressures of the job home with you. Of course there are certain aspects you wish you could do over again. I equate it to having an old time card filing system in my brain. what they’re strategically looking to do. but that clearly hasn’t happened. you need to understand their problems immediately. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? I would say what surprised me most probably is that you’ve got to be on your game everyday. Overall I would say I’ve done a pretty good job of balancing my career and home life. so I try to exercise regularly. I’m amazed at the evolution and growth as you get older. When the clients call you. and I hope that employees and partners here would say that they know what to expect from me and that they know that I’m going to be fair and consistent. What is important is having a relationship with people who love you. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Well certainly the good aspect is the financial rewards and the ability to provide a comfortable life for my family. LLP What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. I am even more surprised by that because I was always hoping by now I might be putting golf balls in the hallways here. what their industry is.com/finance for insider firm profiles. not just your partners. I have to immediately remember if anyone in their immediate family is sick. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. but I’ve learned through the years that I need to leave my work at the office and really be there for my family.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Citrin Cooperman & Company. message boards. fairness is very important because people need to be able to trust what you say and trust you to be fair. effective executive? I think the traits for a good executive are the kind of traits that can be found in any business. There are very few days when I can sit back and really have a day where I have very little to do. I wouldn’t tell you that my work-life balance is in perfect order. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. I like to exercise. I think it’s finally becoming clear to business owners and CFOs that top-flight accountants and accounting firms can make a lasting and positive impact on their companies and their futures.CMU. because that’s not true. and I’ve been here now for 28. you need to tell them what’s on your mind and not let them guess what you’re thinking.

Young people today do not conceptualize where they want to be and therefore they often don’t work towards any goals. more than half of the professionals at firms are now women. how can students or new and young employees look for a mentor? When I grew up. And that will have a huge impact on the profession and the industries and clients we serve. whether it was their personality. women will make up more than 50 percent of the partner population at public accounting firms. In the absence of a formal program. or the way they spoke to clients. My parents told me I was going to be an accountant or a doctor and I said I don’t like blood. . Here at the firm our constant effort with clients is to get the focus back on planning strategically on a five-year and a 10-year period scale. I have mentored people here in the firm but at this point I think they might find the managing partner mentoring them as somewhat intimidating so the one-on-one mentoring is now done by our partners.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Citrin Cooperman & Company. directors and managers. and would love to play a role in helping my hometown teams succeed. going on vacations. they can’t start planning in the fourth year. I’m a lifelong Philadelphia sports fan. or saving for other goals. Similarly. I studied the four or five people who were most successful at the firm and I tried to emulate a couple of things from each. so I figure that’s not happening at my age. so I took the matter into my own hands. If it’s going to be a five-year plan. I tend to take three to five people out. LLP What advice would you give a young person considering a career in accounting? The advice would be the same no matter what the career. that they also need to enjoy the fruits of their labor. there was no such thing as a mentoring program. If you were not in the field. I also think there are going to be huge succession issues. That’s pretty much my story.CMU. what would your dream career be now? If I wasn’t in the accounting profession and I could choose what to do. I’ve worked with a lot of the partners and some of the staff in buying their first homes or second homes. I would choose to run a professional sports franchise. so here we are. and just try to get them to focus on what they’re looking to achieve. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. I’d advise anyone to map out a plan for themselves—a plan that encompasses both the financial and technical aspirations of either accounting or whatever discipline they’re in. brick-by-brick occurrence of energy and intensity and we work pretty hard at that. In additional. It can’t all be about work. Have you ever been mentored. I want them to understand that as they get older. It’s got to be a day-by-day. I tried to take the best of the five and make bits and pieces of it my own and that worked very well for me. or the way they dealt with people. The way I see it is that staff is in very short supply and there’s tremendous pressure on firms to pay staff much higher amounts and give greater perks than they were offering even five to six years ago. Do that with a five-year or a 10-year window realizing that they’re going to have to adjust it periodically. so I think over the next 15 to 20 years. There are already with replacing the generation that’s a little bit ahead of me as well as my own generation. we spend a lot of time with our young staff trying to make them understand that along with wanting to work hard at their career. so when I don’t have lunch meetings for business. they also need to think of how much money they want to make in today’s dollars and what that could provide for them. But the phone hasn’t been ringing with any offers. or the way they comported themselves in the office.EDU) Any predictions about the future of the industry? The accounting industry clearly is in an evolving stage right now. I do want to keep my finger on the pulse of what’s happening with my partners and staff. 24 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. however. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in accounting? I really didn’t consider anything else.com Inc. or mentored others? When I was young there was nothing called mentoring although I had a couple of people who took interest in my career.

It won’t be dull.e. One thing’s for sure. Students who have to choose whether to go into investment banking right out of college. CAREER LIBRARY 25 . particularly if we hit a recession.” These are interesting times indeed and I’m actually looking forward to seeing what the future will bring. I think the management is going to prove to be the difference-maker. So just like we try to get our staff and our clients to run as efficiently and smartly as they can. the managing partners have to be as good as they can be.. message boards. In the next five to 15-year cycle. But in any business or industry. or spend extra time and money to qualify as a CPA might think twice about choosing public accounting as a career.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Citrin Cooperman & Co. retirements and generational replacements. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.vault. LLP I think going into the industry has been made very difficult due to stricter educational requirements. and their focus squarely on meeting the changing needs of their partners.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. Those with their eye on the ball. I find most successful firms tend to have the best managing partners and the firms that have a lot of talent but are not well managed tend to be okay but not great. there are going to be tremendous changes in the industry in terms of mergers and acquisitions. If this continues. good or bad.. thereby narrowing the number of people entering the field. the 150-hour rule.com/finance for insider firm profiles. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. As the Chinese saying goes. “May you live in interesting times.CMU. it could drive up compensation to a level that would be dangerous down the road. staff and clients. In accounting as an example. will have the edge. i.

as she transitions into her new role as the first and only female to serve as CEO among the nations top-25 certified public accounting firms. and I was vocal on best practices that we should implement at Clifton Gunderson. In addition. which we call “Priority One. The classroom teaches you the techniques. develop their talents and create an exciting and flexible work environment. McMasters—Chief Practice Officer Chief Practice Officer Krista McMasters leads strategic initiatives across the firm and has been named chief executive officer. . My insistence and perseverance led to my appointment as assistant director of assurance services and later as director of assurance services. 26 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. Q&A with Krista McMasters What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? I had what could be called a typical progression in a public accounting firm from staff to client practice partner. I saw opportunities to improve our human resource practices and I wrote a position paper on action steps we should take to improve. Member at Large of the AICPA Council (2006 to the present). What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? Being in a position in the firm to influence strategic direction and instigate and implement change. Illinois CPA Society and Wisconsin CPA Society. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.Clifton Gunderson LLP Krista M. effictive June 1 2009.” to support a structure that enables the firm to hire the right people. director of assurance services and partner in charge of Priority One. Ms. McMasters is a member of the Financial Accounting Standards advisory council (2007 to the present) to advise the Board on FASB projects and issues. That led to my appointment as a partner in charge of our HR programs. and ensuring the firm has the resources to promote regulatory compliance. She received her BS in accounting from the University of Illinois. But. McMasters’ professional affiliations include the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.CMU. I was an individual that was always looking for ways for the firm to provide more and more resources to our field personnel. called “Priority One. and the governing council of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants determining the Institute’s programs and policies.EDU) What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? You learn so much on the job. She is currently responsible for the firm’s service to clients by managing the service and niche leaders. but experience helps you apply those techniques and make them real. While in that role. provide quality client service and minimize firm risk. she provides strategic oversight to the firm’s growth strategies to best position existing and new services offered and to the human resource area.” Both of those job responsibilities. led to my current position as chief practice officer with the firm.com Inc. Ms.

That’s very difficult today with 24/7 access to everyone and everything between e-mail and text messaging. exercising. diverse. traveling. to the chief practice officer. and work the way it works best for you depending on your individual goals and needs. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. It’s also great that there are opportunities in all geographical areas of the country and all size firms. That was a surprise. reading. I believe your goal as an executive should be to develop those that you supervise to the point where they surpass you in knowledge and skill. I’m really faithful to exercise and eating responsibly. having integrity. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. anything apart from Clifton Gunderson. I have also been very fortunate to have been mentored by many people outside our firm. message boards. and all of those avenues. at all staff levels. What has surprised you the most about working in the accounting industry? Each day is very different. In my case. Do you have any special techniques or philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? For me to be at my best. or mentored others? Clifton Gunderson’s core existence is about coaching and mentoring those that you supervise so that they can develop and grow in their career and the firm can grow. effective executive? Primarily. I always come back refreshed and complete.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Clifton Gunderson LLP What would you most like to change? Things that are out of your control like regulatory changes provide the biggest challenge in our industry.” Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Have you ever been mentored. I believe it’s very important that you look for individuals that are successful at doing what you’d like to become. CAREER LIBRARY 27 . What advice would you give a young person considering a career in accounting? Public accounting is a tremendous career with unlimited opportunities if you really invest in it. when I was the director of assurance services and the CEO and board of directors in my current role. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. it’s very important that I take time to enjoy what I enjoy most. because of the diverse nature of all of our clients and all the different services we provide.com/finance for insider firm profiles. spending time with my husband.EDU) I’ve been mentored by many from the senior staff and partners in the practice office that I worked early in my career. But. always being honest and being someone who can be trusted. How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? It’s really important to find a mentor that understands specifically what you do so they can really help you develop and counsel you towards professional success.vault. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? The good thing about public accounting is that it allows you flexibility to control your career and personal life.CMU. professional colleagues and friends. Our mission statement is “Growth of Our People. I have to really focus on maintaining a healthy lifestyle. It’s also critical that you believe and live in the importance of developing people. All Else Follows. rewarding but flexible enough to allow you to mold it to what’s best for you. Growth of Our Clients. It’s also important that I get away from work completely at times. It’s challenging. my personal life is pretty integrated with my work life but that’s my choice and that’s what’s great about public accounting.

specifically fiction and murder mysteries. . Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Any predictions about the future of the industry? Public accounting has a very strong future. Companies are always going to be in need of our services—audit. tax and otherwise—and the pipeline of individuals coming into the field is nowhere near the demand. so the future is very bright.CMU.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Clifton Gunderson LLP People need to look within their firm. the best mentors are going to be people they work with or work around on a daily basis because they are really going to understand what they do. When accounting got difficult in the latter part of college while studying for the CPA exam and taking college classes at the same time. If you were not in the field. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in accounting? I knew in high school that I really wanted to go into accounting in college so I didn’t really look very hard at other careers. what would your dream career be now? I would love to be a novelist. I thought briefly of doing something other than accounting.com Inc. That would be a dream job. but I stuck with it and it certainly all worked out.EDU) 28 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault.

View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Clifton Gunderson LLP

“Public accounting allows you flexibility to control your career and personal life, and work the way it works best for you depending on your individual goals and needs.”
— Krista McMasters, Chief Practice Officer, Clifton Gunderson

Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.CMU.EDU)

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Commerce Bancorp, Inc.
Linda Verba—Executive Vice President, Retail Operations
Executive Vice President, Retail Operations Linda Verba has led the strategic growth of Commerce Bank’s retail operations from 75 to more than 450 locations. During her eight years, she has overseen the front lines of the company’s retail stores, which stretch from Northeast to the Southeastern U.S. Her expertise, dedication and approach have guided a unique corporate culture of innovation and service. Ms. Verba is a champion of Commerce Bank’s unique corporate culture that celebrates service, dedication and fun. She has led the development of engaging and exciting customer and employee events in corporate and store locations to recognize achievements, celebrate the company culture, build morale and thank customers. She is also actively involved in mentoring new managers and motivating team members on the front lines. Early in her career, Ms. Verba held management positions with industry-leading companies including PHH Mortgage. There, she effectively led the human resources department, was involved in sales and account management, developed and managed the company’s call center operations and spearheaded product development. Prior to that, she worked at two industry-leading retailers, Strawbridge & Clothier and Filene’s department stores. Ms. Verba has served on the board of directors of the South Jersey Chamber of Commerce, American Heart Association and Arts & Business Council/Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce. In 2005, she was honored with a Shatter the Glass Ceiling Award from the National Association of Women Business Owners. She was the chairperson of the board and keynote speaker for the Metavante FURST Senior Management Conference in 2007. Ms. Verba received her BS from Penn State University.

Q&A with Linda Verba
What are some steps that you took to get to the position you are in now?
I think the most important thing was my open-mindedness about career choices. I wasn’t trained to be a banker. My degree is in elementary and kindergarten education. I worked in retail and when folks approached me about assignments at whatever company that I was at, no matter how frightening it might have been to accept change and move to a new assignment or move to a different industry, I always made those choices. It’s given me a terrific and very broad experience. I have always been in the people business. I also have a background in HR. I think it’s about your ability as an individual to learn, to communicate with people effectively, whether you are delivering good news, whether you’re delivering news that they don’t necessarily want to hear. So I really think for me it is embracing the people and understanding their perspective, and that takes time. If you would have had this interview with me in my first job and maybe even in my second job, my response may have been much different. But now I think the real connection is about the people connection, and I think it’s about being connected to our employees and customers.

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View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Commerce Bancorp, Inc.

What are some things you feel that you have learned on the job and not in the classroom?
I would tell you from a practical perspective, most of what I learned, I learned on the job. I’m degree-ed, I’ve gone back to school, I’ve been in classroom situations, but I think each and every one of us has a healthy dose of a fear of failure. We learn more from our failures than we do from our successes. So it’s okay to have a fear of failure, but I also think its how you recover from failure that teaches you the most. It could be small, it could be large, but I think the failures are probably what have catapulted me a little faster.

What is the most rewarding aspect of your career?
That I have fun every day; that I still love coming to work; that it’s not a job to me. It’s an assignment, it is a way of life, it is part of who I am, but it’s also because I have fun. And whether I’m having fun developing people, solving a challenging problem, I have always worked in high-growth environments, and that meant every day was different, and so in many instances my job title didn’t change and yet my role changed exponentially in the same job. I can also tell you that my job is absolutely different every day, and so although I can plan my way through it, I’ve also learned not only to manage, but take advantage of interruptions for what they are and what they bring to the table. It also has a lot to do with your own personal attitude. If you don’t like it, it’s not worth it, get out, it doesn’t matter how much money it pays you. So even on challenging days, I literally come to work and recognize that I’m going to have one hell of a good time.

If you had a choice, what would you most like to change?
Well I’m pretty straightforward and impatient, and sometimes those two could be a very dangerous combination. So one of the things I work on is learning when to bite my tongue and listen more. I’d like to listen more; I still have a tendency to get on to the end so much that I interrupt.

Anything you would like to change about your career?
Actually, no. I think I have taken advantage of opportunities, and that would be the advice that I would give to people. Sometimes opportunities come in the most unlikely way that make you look at everything in terms of what it might do to broaden your knowledge. I think for successful businesspeople, there needs to be an absolute balance between what I would refer to as IQ and EQ, IQ being the intelligence quotient, EQ being the emotional quotient. I think that in the various assignments I’ve had over the number of years that I’ve worked, that balance is pretty good with me.

What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good, effective executive?
I think, first of all you’ve got to work hard. You’ve got to work harder than everybody else. Being smart is important because you can’t teach people to be smart. But smart only takes you so far. I think you have to be functionally schizophrenic, I think you need to know when to get into the details and when to keep your eye on the long-term ball. What’s also important is the ability to talk to people at every level—I have as much of a good relation with our van drivers, who breathe our culture in such a way, that it just warms my heart to give them a hug. I think you need to be able to talk to people in every single walk of life. I’ve always believed, in job interviews or when I’ve been with people, that a measure of their character is watching how they treat the help. Whether that help be in a restaurant, whether it be in a service station, whether it be in a fast food restaurant, watching how people treat the help, to me, is just a real defining moment in their character.

Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.CMU.EDU)

What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry?
It’s what I refer to, in banking in particular, as a herd mentality. For example, if an article gets published and somebody indicates that they had great success with it, everybody follows. So if you look at online banking and billpay, everybody does it for free now but everybody gave up a revenue stream and so none of us can go backwards. So I think there’s a bit of a herd mentality in the financial

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or if I’m running or exercising. I know when we need to do a family dinner.EDU) 32 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. At the same time. maybe did some things at school. So I think it’s always good to get yourself hooked up with somebody who understands. to plead their case. hello? Clearly as a parent. Also. because outsiders look at banking and the finance industry as the movers and shakers in the world. those are the kind of things that broaden your horizon. my suggestion would be that they broaden their horizons. but I think my daughter has kind of learned that for women in particular. I would coach my daughter. so I would hope that they would be a whole lot more creative I guess than some of what I’ve seen. sometimes it’s just better for them not to know. but I don’t speak for her. maybe had a parttime job. From the time she was born—she’s 18 now—I’ve worked her entire life. services business and that surprises me. I’ve not missed much of what she’s done. because my husband can look at situations and get to the crux of the matter in a nanosecond. I don’t make dinner during the week every night. very proud of that. However. I find that it clears my head. I’m not convinced I could be as successful in another financial services business. I think one of the things about young people in this day and age that drives me to distraction is when somebody’s mother calls me. Inc. whether you have a glass of wine. I’m really very. That allows us to focus on dialogue that is not work-related. I mean I don’t talk to them about it and that’s something that I learned over the years. I shield. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? It’s been pretty cool for my daughter to see my ability to multitask. “Okay. whether it was soccer or field hockey games or plays or presentations. They need the finance courses. But it’s always one of the first things to go when I’m busy. and that balance is very important to me. so as I watch her getting ready to go to college. whether you go and work out. whatever it is that energizes you. I also think I’m married to a really cool guy who has been an excellent corporate spouse. and it’s important for them to understand that.com Inc. or grandfather calls me. people talk a lot about thinking outside the box. I think my family has probably done more for me than I for them. if I go out for a long walk. and I think that’s a good thing for families. But it’s also kind of cool for her to see that she can be all she wants to be. because my husband is not in the financial services business. Like. and I miss it when I don’t do it. there is no box. I think that folks need to learn to speak for themselves. and do something that they’ve never done before. go to the ball game. she has a greater appreciation for that ability to multitask. because it is important. but the electives should be in liberal arts so that they can talk about something other than the numbers and business. so you almost have to like smack yourself upside the head and say. and I think everybody’s different.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Commerce Bancorp. To me. to choose your mate carefully. it’s time to do whatever. versus somebody that only went to school. I would also say that some form of either community service or a part-time job shows that you have balance in your life. those are important. even though it may be a little less traditional than the way my mother did it. . I call it mental food. make sure you take time out for it.” What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance or banking? If they are going into college. whether you go out and have dinner with your girlfriends. So whatever you need to do. when you go through trying times in business. I think that’s why we [Commerce Bank] are different and the reason why I am successful here. because everybody’s got to compete—people just don’t take a break to smell the roses. that there is no box. When I watch her. because he’s not in the fray of it. and they’ve learned not to ask. but I know how to do a family dinner. I always feel better about hiring somebody that can juggle a variety of their priorities. Like. I would encourage them to have a broad brush of education experiences. I’ve been able to juggle my schedule to be able to be at work and be where she needs me to be. have fun. whether you run. because we work a lot. and Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. or food for your head—whatever you do to get yourself food for your head. I think young people today take themselves way too seriously and in their quest for a career and good grades—and maybe some of that is our fault. they need the business courses. Do you have any special techniques or philosophies that help you maintain this balance between work and life? I think it’s helpful if you have a whole lot of energy. and I do.CMU. If I were interviewing somebody and they had a B average but they were active in sports. When I say I shield my family from it.

being proactive. and if it’s not right. yes I’ve mentored people formally. and nothing is personal. I don’t think that they even need to use the word “mentor. I don’t think the rules of engagement about. because it’s more natural. not a lot. that’s why. but I really think it is the informal mentoring that is more effective. but probably need my talents. or start at least to have it somewhere in the horizon. But the things I toy around with are doing some form of community service or working for a nonprofit. I think now young people have opportunities. message boards. I think it’s very cool that companies understand the concept of mentoring and have mentoring programs. even in a social sort of environment. Inc.CMU. if it doesn’t feel right. or whose skill set they admire. it was because.” but I think they could say things like. I didn’t know what my opportunities were.” are quite as tight as they were perhaps when I was starting out. the value that I bring is that I think somewhat androgynously about that. but when he would go to antique stores. its fun to seek out people who are different. I think I would always be in some form of a service business. I don’t think that your first job out of college is life-threatening. it is all about the business. you’ll never be happy at it. and so my advice would be. Now when I mentor or give advice to other women. “I’ve had x amount of jobs in so many years. I’ve been mentored formally. CAREER LIBRARY 33 . what would your dream career be now? Actually. It took me 15 years to learn this lesson. and ask them. I think its fun also to mentor cross-culturally because our world is such a diverse fabric these days.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Commerce Bancorp. How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry in the absence of a formal program? I would suggest that they find someone whose work they admire. So kids out of college should take a job. quite frankly. they’re going to know.” It’s being in charge of your own destiny. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. particularly in this day and age. quite frankly. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on this career? I thought about teaching and retailing. I was in manufacturing for a very brief period of time. but I would also suggest that if someone turns you down because they don’t have time. I had a boss that collected Chinese porcelain.EDU) If you were not in this field. and the ballet. Have you ever been mentored or mentored others? The answer is yes and yes. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. You’re in charge of your life and you’re in charge of your career. Absolutely. I had never gone before but I went. I mean. we have them and we assign mentors. I would go with him. and I’ve been mentored formally. I knew nothing about it. I think I’ve learned more when I’ve been mentored informally and that means a colleague who has the managerial courage to do some peer coaching. which most likely is going to translate into: you’re not going to be good at it. It’s absolutely OK to ask.vault. it’s got to feel right. don’t take it personally. it was other guys looking out for me. because I’m really more of a sports person. I still go to the ballet today. So when I say I took advantage of opportunities. If your mother and father want you to be a doctor. But in my day and age. I did anything that anybody asked me to do. He would take me to the opera. Even though I have mentored people formally. So to a large extent. “I really admire how you handled yourself. So yes. or an actress. but you balance out all of those different experiences. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. In my case.com/finance for insider firm profiles. as I come closer to the end of my career. as an HR/chief operating officer of a small company. to learn what makes them tick and to me that’s a form of mentoring. Your mentor is there only to give you advice and counsel. or an engineer. because there weren’t a lot of women floating around that were going to give me advice and counsel. women chose more traditional careers. because I was in retail. because I think those kinds of folks can’t afford people like me. Sometimes they’re going to luck out in the most unlikely places.

I also think about how much fun it would to go work for an airline and try to revolutionize their whole concept of service because airline services. . I think one of the things I would like to do is go see if I can run an airline from a service perspective and turn it around. it would be a great year to come in and learn. on a college level. I think it’s going to be a very. At the same time. so I would encourage people to try it. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.com Inc. very tough year in the next year for financial services. Any predictions about the future of the industry? I think this next year is going to be an incredibly trying year.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Commerce Bancorp. Between the yield curve and what went on in the mortgage industry.CMU.EDU) 34 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. I think that would be great fun. between things going global. Sometimes I toy around with the concept of teaching. Inc. between the economics in general. sometimes it’s in the tough years that you learn the most. not shy away from it. are terrible. but teaching at a higher level. for all intents and purposes. But I would say for somebody who’s got some real chutzpah.

View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Commerce Bancorp, Inc.

“People talk a lot about thinking outside the box … but I think for women in particular, there is no box.”
— Linda Verba, EVP, Chief Retail Officer, Commerce Bancorp, Inc.

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Convergent Wealth Advisors, LLC
John T. Scully—Director
Director J.T. Scully consults with and advises clients on the full range of Convergent Wealth Advisor’s services, including portfolio analysis, investment policy statements, asset allocation, portfolio construction and implementation, and performance evaluation. He maintains relationships with an array of accounting, tax and estate planning professionals to afford clients appropriate counsel on their customized wealth plans. Mr. Scully’s career spans 25 years in a variety of investment positions: financial advisor with Bernstein Global Wealth in Washington, D.C.; regional director with Mitchell Hutchins Asset Management, the investment management arm of Paine Webber (now UBS); and president of Spectrum Capital Group and Carey Financial, Inc., both affiliates of the New York real estate investment banking firm W. P. Carey & Co. Mr. Scully holds the Investment Management Consultants Association’s Certified Investment Management Analyst (CIMA) designation, as well as IMCA’s Wealth Management Certificate and NASD Series 3, 7, 22, 24, 31, 63 and 65 licenses. He is a member of the Greater Washington Society of CPAs and the Greater Washington Board of Trade. Mr. Scully received his BS in business administration from the University of Delaware and an MBA in real estate finance from Temple University.

Q&A with John Scully
What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now?
I’ve been with the firm for six years. Prior to that, I was at Sanford Bernstein for three-and-a-half years. Prior to that, I was at what is now UBS and used to be Paine Webber where my role was regional director in the product area, helping distribute mutual funds and separate accounts through the Paine Webber brokerage system so I didn’t work with clients directly, I worked with them indirectly through the brokers in offices around the country. I started working directly with clients when I started with Sanford Bernstein in 1997.
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What are some things that you think you learned on the job and not in the classroom?
That the job becomes much less about investment and much more about psychology, and understanding what makes clients tick, knowing what their hopes and fears and needs and dreams and aspirations are. Client-specific information can’t really be taught. You just have to live through it with clients in good and bad markets, and good and challenging life situations, and help guide them through it.

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View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Convergent Wealth Advisors, LLC

What is the most rewarding aspect of your career?
When a client tells you that they feel much more comfortable with their financial situation and that doesn’t necessarily mean they’ve made a lot of money, it’s that they understand where they are and what they’re trying to accomplish, and they feel comfortable that they’re on the right path.

What would you most like to change?
I would eliminate CNBC and MSNBC, and half a dozen newspapers. I think clients are bombarded with information. The best description I’ve heard of the market is it’s like watching a guy walk up a hill with a yo-yo. If you stand back far enough, you realize, long-run, he’s going uphill. But most of the media focuses on watching the yo-yo going up and down, which for most people is counterproductive.

What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good, effective executive?
Being patient and empathetic, and being a very good listener. Really trying to understand what the client is saying and trying not to filter through your own personal experience or biases, but absorbing what makes the client react the way they do.

What impact has your career had on your personal and family life?
It has generally had a very positive impact. Fortunately, it’s a career where you can do well financially and where I have a fair amount of flexibility in my scheduling. I have two daughters, and my office is pretty close to my home, so it’s not difficult if I want to leave at 4 o’clock on a Tuesday afternoon and go watch a softball game, and come back to the office. Also, I can manage my travel to be pretty much when I want it to be, rather than having somebody dictate to me when I need to be somewhere.

Do you have any special techniques and methods or philosophies that help you maintain the good work/life balance that you have?
I’m pretty good at compartmentalizing things, so I generally don’t bring work home. When I’m at home, I try to be devoted to my family and when I’m at work, I’m devoted to my work. Until I joined this firm I never had a BlackBerry and I avoided it because I thought it would be a real infringement on my personal freedom. But I have to say that having one is an enormous help, because every time you have a little bit of spare time, you can catch up on e-mails and projects. I find it invaluable.

What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry?
How many misconceptions that clients have, and how much misinformation they have, and how naïve they are about various investments. We deal with fairly wealthy people—our average client is probably about $40 million—and they’ve been very successful in their business, but that doesn’t necessarily translate into a high level of understanding about investments. I spend an enormous amount of time just educating clients about what investments they have, what investments they should have, how the investments they have work, what the pros and cons are, how they generate returns, what the risks involved are.
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I’m always surprised that I frequently have to be on guard against assuming people know what I think they know, and really try to explain to them in fairly simple terms how things work.

What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance?
Find a great mentor, serve as an intern under them, and work for them or follow them around and learn the business.

Have you ever been mentored or have you mentored others?
Both. I had several excellent mentors both at UBS and at Bernstein, and I try to be a good mentor for the people we have here at our firm.

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some I think don’t serve much of a purpose other than to generate revenue for the manufacturer of the product. I was then dealing directly with the brokers. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on finance? Looking back. and six years ago moved over to this firm. talk to a lot of people and figure out how various people conduct their practice and what would be the most complementary chemistry or relationship that would fit your personality. I’ve always been involved in coaching sports. I thought I’d make my fortune as a real estate developer. that I could have probably made more money if I had continued on the real estate path. I transitioned from a pure real estate investment banking career into a broader investment management and consulting career at Paine Webber. private equities and hedge funds. to some degree of comfort. You have to. I mean. It was initially successfully and then. I don’t think that trend is going to slow down. I went back to graduate school and got an MBA in finance. and as my daughters got older. Initially I did that with Bernstein. and now we have literally thousands of versions of derivatives and all sorts of structured products and Wall Street has been very adept at creating an enormous number of very complex financial instruments.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Convergent Wealth Advisors. If you were not in this field. They’re already mainstreamed among institutional investors and most sophisticated high-worth investors. and realized that wasn’t my life’s calling. it seems like my career has been a random series of events. and I moved to New Orleans and developed an office park down there. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Any predictions about the future of the industry? It will continue to become more and more complex. because part of it is just personality and chemistry—it’s hard to say you go mentor with Mr. mutual funds. savings accounts and CDs. in several years. When I started in this business. not so successful. But I’m very happy with where I am now—we’ve got a great firm. bonds.com Inc. it was stocks. Then I started syndicating real estate for a couple of firms in San Diego and New York and for the one in New York we were raising most of our money through Paine Webber. It’s almost always informal. when the local economy cratered. I’d probably move to Sun Valley and become a ski instructor or a teacher. Mr. Then I was buying. . from a purely financial perspective.CMU. what would your dream career be now? If I won the lottery. Smith may be a great mentor for me and a terrible mentor for you. and I was traveling virtually every week. or coaching. Smith. I decided I didn’t want to be away from home that much and I decided to build a practice directly with private clients in Washington. LLC How would someone find a mentor at their company/industry in the absence of a formal program? There are very few firms that really have a great formal program. But either way. I think what we now call alternative investments.EDU) 38 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. After college. won’t be considered alternatives. So there were several forks in the road that I can look back on and say. I worked for a couple of years for a trucking company. I think there will continue to be many more products and investment vehicles out there. and we’ve had a lot of success in the six years I’ve been here. and I think we’re poised to have as much or more success in the next 10 or 12 [years]. I’d probably do something that had to do with sports and teaching. so if money were no object. Some serve a good purpose. selling and developing buildings—and in the course of developing buildings. so I got to know those people and when the real estate market became somewhat soft in the early 1990s. and started my postgraduate school career in real estate with Prudential Insurance.

LLC Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. message boards.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www.com/finance for insider firm profiles. Director. Convergent Wealth Advisors. LLC “It’s always surprising that I frequently have to be on guard against assuming [that] people know what I think they know. CAREER LIBRARY 39 . the Vault Finance Job Board and more.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Convergent Wealth Advisors.CMU. and really trying to explain to them in fairly simple terms how things work.” — John Scully.vault.

as well as numerous middlemarket companies. . initial public offerings and recaps. Greenwich Academy and The Matthew Forbes Romer Foundation.C. Mr. MGM. Education Management and Nortek. What I’ve been able to gain through that experience is that the markets do come back so I’m much more optimistic now than I would have been at a similar time in the market 10 to 20 years ago. Yorke—Vice Chairman. Recent notable buyouts include companies such as Neiman Marcus. Yorke received his BS in economics summa cum laude. learning about the fine points of accounting or finance. Mr. the one thing that surprised me the most is the resiliency of the business. Targa Resources. Univison. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Completing a transaction that others doubted is always rewarding. Warner Chilcott. Yorke serves in the investment banking division of Credit Suisse. He is also Head of the North American Financial Sponsor Group. where he was co-head of the financial sponsors group. 1990s. Mr.com Inc.EDU) After two decades. 40 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. I.N. Yorke has worked with numerous private equity sponsors on many of their most important transactions. and even in the early 2000 that were difficult to see whether there was going to ultimately be a light at the end of the tunnel and whether we were going to have functioning markets again.CMU. What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? One thing that you really understand is that personal relationships with your colleagues and with your clients are extremely important.Credit Suisse Group Edward M. Transdigm. beta gamma sigma from The Wharton School of University of Pennsylvania and a JD from New York University Law School. Investment Banking & Head of the North American Financial Sponsor Group Vice Chairman Edward M. Lufkin & Jenrette. and it’s really hard to appreciate that when you’re sitting in a classroom. Q&A with Edward Yorke What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? The most rewarding aspect is when you can be creative. Mr. Yorke joined Credit Suisse in November 2000 when the Bank merged with Donaldson. He has been involved on the buy-and-sell side of numerous leveraged buyouts as well as exits through sales. There were certainly time periods in the 1980s. Yorke serves on the board of trustees of Youth. He is also on board of advisors for The Hospital for Special Surgery. and can provide something that is differentiated from the rest of the competition..

Ultimately. particularly in the financial world. and the most important thing is that on every transaction you work on. make sure you’re enjoying your family and friends or catching up on the things you need to take care of away from work. we will begin to see a rebound and a return to normalcy. and I think in order to be able to have all that. attorneys. but I think that if at the end of the day I decided to get completely out of the finance world. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. I think you need to have this view when you’re doing deals. effective executive? There are obviously many. I decided that was not the right career for me. I’m not sure I considered many other professions. There was no doubt in anyone’s mind that we were going to hit a bump along the road where we were going to have some issues in the markets. you need to have perspective on what’s important and what’s not. you can have great views but the most important thing is to be working with people you enjoy being with.” if you listen closely. You need to have perspective on life.CMU. when you’re negotiating transactions. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. So. I still feel that I learn things on a frequent basis. making sure you are working with people you are comfortable with. Do not count on others to do the right thing. pleasant demeanor. clients. You can have great offices. we have been in a cyclical upturn. Any predictions about the future of the industry? It’s a cyclical industry. It doesn’t mean there aren’t time periods where you’re working around the clock through the weekends. or mentored others? I’ve certainly been mentored throughout my career by senior bankers.vault. But during down periods.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Credit Suisse Group Have you ever been mentored. respect for others. I think one other important thing to have is a very strong sense of responsibility. For the past two or three years. Having said that.EDU) Well I actually started off as an attorney for two years after graduating from law school. You need to have the mind-set that it is up to you to make sure projects are completed on time and properly. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any special techniques. I’d probably like to be a teacher and a coach. I’ve had official and unofficial mentors. We certainly hit that in the summer of 2007. don’t worry about face time. you really need to have a balance between work and your life outside of work.com/finance for insider firm profiles. what would be your dream career be now? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. listening is a really important skill. in every meeting you attend. understand that there are ups and downs in the business and make sure you go to work with people that you enjoy being with. friends and family. You need to be able to see the forest through the trees. I’m often shocked at meetings with colleagues or competitors where you’re sitting across the table from people and it’s so apparent that the people are not listening and not reacting to what clients or colleagues or senior bankers are really looking for. One that often gets overlooked is listening. I think that’s appropriate at many times. including hardworking. CAREER LIBRARY 41 . What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? Make sure you are willing to work hard. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? If you were not in the field. But as with most cyclical industries. I expect that we are going to rebound from this and that sometime in late 2008 or early 2009. that’s the most important part of your career decision. while someone may not be your “mentor. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? It’s definitely important to have a work/life balance. desire to win and many others. you can have prestigious titles. make sure you treat both your senior and junior colleagues with respect. message boards. you can make every experience a learning experience.

The universities cannot teach this. Additionally.Crowe Chizek and Company. Q&A with Charles Allen What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? I started with Crowe just out of college and I didn’t know at the time but the reason I came to Crowe was because of what we now call our values. These services include: managing the due diligence effort. is a member of Horwath International’s board of directors and is licensed to practice in various states across the Crowe practice geography. Mr. divestiture. acquisition. the parent company of Crowe Chizek and Company. sits on the board of Junior Achievement of Chicago. LLP. he is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and represents Crowe Chizek as a member of the AICPA’s major firms group. and development of incentives for and structuring of participation by management. he encouraged me to relocate to Chicago to support his investors and he really taught me how to be a businessman. . Allen most recently served as the managing executive of Crowe Chizek’s commercial services group. you also remove the opportunity for great success. along the way I had a number of good mentors. Allen—Chief Executive Officer CEO Charles “Chuck” Allen has more than 30 years of assurance. It was a private equity firm and I began working with him and his investors and he encouraged me to take risk. and he asked me to continue to represent him. LLP Charles M. He is a member of the Illinois CPA Society. Also. and venture investors.com Inc. He currently also serves as a member of the executive committee for Crowe Group LLP. strategic. Mr. 42 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. assisting in the senior and mezzanine financing arrangements. Allen currently chairs Crowe Chizek’s management committee and serves as a governing board member for the Center for Audit Quality. One specifically was a client of mine who I helped when I was a fairly young CPA. His experience also includes advising companies as they enter public markets. structuring of debt and capital investments. including both success and failure. If you remove risk from business. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.CMU. Learning which risks to take and when to take them comes with experience. I had a small-town upbringing and I think that the values of that small-town environment positioned me well to run Crowe. Allen received his BS in accounting from Ball State University.EDU) What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? I have learned how to evaluate risks and to make decisions that involve risks. Mr. He is known for providing strategic assistance to private investors in acquiring and financing targeted companies. corporate finance and strategic business consulting experience leading the engagement teams for a number of financial.

The way we manage at Crowe is to try to make sure that we balance things and we evaluate all three stakeholders: our clients. I believe there is no success in business that will make up for a failure at home and that we need to invest first in the family. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. The model we have developed has definitely served me well. CAREER LIBRARY 43 . Each step along the way it has been required of me to be a better communicator. the most rewarding thing to me has been to help build and to be part of this firm that now has nearly 2. It’s always been a surprise to me how much I need to communicate to be successful. My wife. we’re not trained well to communicate. I joined the firm with 18 other college recruits to increase Crowe to a firm of 80 people and three offices at that time. LLP What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? When I started with Crowe it was a small firm in a small town. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any special techniques. I still do this even today with my kids who are in their 20s. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? I relocated three times to support my career. We have what we call date night.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Crowe Chizek and Company.com/finance for insider firm profiles. I try to get home on Friday nights and have dinner with Cathy. I chose public accounting and I chose Crowe.500 people and 23 offices. message boards. have traveled much. The paths are many. in many cases. continue to have long hours. effective executive? Well I think with each decision and every decision process you go through.CMU. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. What has surprised you the most about working in the accounting industry? What surprised me most about taking over as the CEO of this public accounting firm was the need for skills to better communicate with all the stakeholders I mentioned earlier. you let the other two down. It’s been a wonderful experience for me and a great opportunity. but each time I came to a decision point. I have also had a number of opportunities. there are also many different avenues you can take and each of them can lead to a fulfilling career and success. I used to do it by telephone but now I find myself doing it by e-mail because of the connectivity. finding a balance is important. If I had to make the same decisions all over. and I have been married for 32 years and we insist that the children make time for all of us to be together periodically. our people and the firm. I would make the same ones. Over the course of my career. a number of forks in the road. But we try to connect every day. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Every Friday night we try to be together and since I’ve traveled throughout my career. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in public accounting? There’s enormous opportunity today for young people in this industry. I use this model daily as I make decisions. I always try to connect at home each night. but I joined Crowe because of those dynamics. no matter where I am. We take long family vacations. but there are some things that I have done personally from a family perspective to keep the balance. I have worked long hours. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. I had offers from all the Big Eight at that time. Cathy. Watching these people develop and Crowe grow from a small-town Midwestern firm to what is now one of the top firms in the country is my greatest reward. What would you most like to change? I would have to say nothing. and I have a very strong sense of family. I had numerous opportunities coming out of school but I joined Crowe because it was a small firm in a small town and with limited traveling. Today.vault. but.EDU) We come out of school as technicians and we understand our trade. I believe if you become too focused on any one of those stakeholders.

com Inc. If you were not in the field. in fact. I think the public and private company financial markets and investors need a sustainable profession to serve their needs and there are many needs that we can serve the market in the way of audit. who will challenge you as you are moving through your career is also important. How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? I think most firms of any size or substance have a process of identifying and helping people in their career find mentors and coaches. there were none that offered the challenge and opportunity that I saw in public accounting and at Crowe.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Crowe Chizek and Company. risk consulting and performance services.CMU. tax. certainly network within the organization. your boss being your coach is important. mostly one client who I was very close to and who helped me develop. I have three especially. I think it’s a great career choice for young people coming out of the scholastic environment. but each time I looked at it. maybe tennis or golf. someone you respect and someone who will challenge you as you move through different levels in your career. I didn’t know why Crowe was the right firm for me but I now know that the values matched up with the values I have. Any predictions about the future of the industry? I believe public accounting is strong. the chief operating officer. . the chief risk officer of the firm and the chief people officer. That may be a boss and. Today I coach and mentor a number of people. have respect for. to find someone with whom you have a comfort level. but also finding someone outside of that role who you trust. and that’s why it felt right to me. vibrant and very committed to quality. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in public accounting? I chose public accounting when I was a junior in high school. I’ve had numerous mentors through my career. but it would probably have to be some type of an outdoor athlete. It’s part of the way business is done today and to the extent that it’s not available. or mentored others? Both. I believe the industry will continue to be vibrant and it will continue to offer numerous opportunities for talented young people. both inside Crowe (senior partners) and outside of Crowe.EDU) 44 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. we have a talent development process that assists people in the firm find and work with a coach and develop their careers. Have you ever been mentored. I have had many opportunities along the road to leave the profession and join private industry. I spend quite a bit of time with our chief people officer in assisting her in our Women into Leadership initiative while also helping her better position herself in her leadership role in the firm. what would your dream career be now? Not that I’m qualified to do it. I’ve been dedicated to this profession a really long time. At Crowe. LLP As I look back. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Someone you feel comfortable with.

CAREER LIBRARY 45 . message boards. LLP “We come out of school as technicians and we understand our trade. Crowe Chizek and Company LLP.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. a very basic skill needed to be successful.com/finance for insider firm profiles. subsidiary of Crowe Group LLP Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.vault.” — Charles Allen.CMU.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Crowe Chizek and Company. CEO. what we’re not trained well to do in many cases is to communicate. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.

Generally. Mr. Q&A with Dan Peters Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. . Mr. and the managerial and operational implications of transfer pricing. Peters is a member of the National Association of Business Economists. I. on the other hand.” He has been consistently named as a “Leading Transfer Pricing advisor.S. cum laude and an MBA in finance. with management responsibility for over 600 professionals in 35 countries.com Inc. Mr. including effective transfer pricing and supply chain planning. Mr. 46 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. He has helped clients implement a broad range of international and state transfer pricing initiatives. Peters received his BS in metallurgical engineering.” “Highly Recommended— New York. The biggest step that I’ve taken was just being interested in the management of a consulting business and seeking these sorts of roles. He is also the president and board director for the Corporate Transfer Pricing Association. in a professional services firm all of the partners provide services to clients and most of them are not particularly interested in the actual management of the firm. magna cum laude from the University of Pittsburgh.EDU) What are some steps that you took to get to the position you are in now? I was always interested in the management of the business. LLC and is the financial advisory segment leader. transfer pricing and valuation services business. intellectual property management. Dan has responsibility for a business with over 800 professionals in 22 offices. Mr.CMU. He also developed and taught a full-day course called “Valuation Principles in Transfer Pricing for the Center of Advanced Valuation Studies of the American Society of Appraisers. transfer pricing audit support and development of effective global documentation. Peters has been the primary transfer pricing advisor for a number of leading multinational firms in diverse industries. Dan’s primary focus areas include transfer pricing planning in the areas of valuation of intangible assets. have always sought to be involved in both parts of the business.Duff & Phelps Corporation Daniel Peters—Managing Director Managing Director Dan Peters serves in the Morristown office of Duff & Phelps. supply chain planning. Dan originally developed and led the transfer pricing practice and specialty tax business unit of Duff & Phelps. Peters previously served as the managing partner of KPMG’s Global Transfer Pricing services and its U. treatment of services and stewardship.” and a “Best of the Best” advisor in numerous client surveys of the International Tax Review over the past six years. global transfer pricing compliance strategies. Peters has spoken and published on a wide variety of transfer pricing matters.

Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? The most rewarding aspects for me have been the opportunity to see the world and to understand how business operates. The nature of what I do—I consult for many different companies—has allowed me to see inside different industries and I’ve been in every major city in the world. and you can’t do that well if your emotions get in the way. that number is 5. I think that to be calm and levelheaded are the personality traits that are really important in this business because typically you’re managing interpersonal issues.EDU) When I was a younger person. you need to have that same kind of love for it that successful people in any profession have for what they do. Do you have any special techniques. but in my choice of outside-office pursuits. We’ve had an opportunity to live abroad and we’ve been able to do a lot of things that we wouldn’t otherwise have been able to do.CMU. there might have been 25 people in the world who could have legitimately said that they were a transfer-pricing advisor.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Duff & Phelps Corporation What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? Being successful in this career has a lot to do with your interpersonal skills and your relationships with other people. When I was younger. as it’s been very rewarding for us. they don’t read The Wall Street Journal and they don’t understand what’s going on in the world around them as it relates to finance. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? I provide clients advice regarding transfer pricing. Today. It’s a very consuming role. is the amount of time that I spend traveling and the time I spend away from home. CAREER LIBRARY 47 . What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good executive? Over time. I thought of finance as investment banking and CFO-type roles. and how you manage conflicts. message boards. When I started. I never realized that there were so many diverse job opportunities and little niches that are finance-oriented. it is 60 to 65 hours a week. I don’t react emotionally as much as I used to. back in 1992. Those things aren’t really techniques. our time together is the driving force. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. and that’s something that as a kid I never dreamed I would have a chance to do. I hope that I’ve become better at what I do. what would you most like to change? I think the thing I would most like to change is to somehow be able to better manage the time commitment associated with this type of job. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? I’m surprised how many young people go into finance and don’t really love business. But I tend to look on the positive side. I often did let my emotions get the better of me. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. but now I’ve become more detached and factual on managing these issues. so I’m involved in coaching them.vault. and issues and problems on a day-to-day basis. and it’s very hard to put it down.000 professionals and it’s nearly an $800 million global industry. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? It’s been both good and bad. or philosophies that help you maintain the balance? I have three sons. and my sons are all very active in sports. and that are quite robust and exciting and can mean rewarding careers for people. That is something that you don’t learn much about in the classroom and only develop with work experience. rather than my own personal interests. I think if you’re going to be in finance. My sons and I fly-fish and ski together. If you had a choice. I never knew that there was even a transfer pricing industry. The bad.com/finance for insider firm profiles. of course. methods.

and I think the way to find a mentor is to ask people to relay their experiences and see how they might be applicable to you. I’d probably go back to being an engineer. I really wanted to understand the world from his perspective. I probably would go back to my original career. The main reason that made Dick such a good mentor to me was that he was willing to share his time with me. but because I was curious. the only thing better than being a doctor or a lawyer. it was a very difficult. run a big steel mill.com Inc. Have you ever been mentored or mentored others? I’ve had mentors and been mentored. the creativity and the things that they bring to our economy is what differentiates us and provides us comparative advantage. and in my hometown. I later went back to school and got my MBA in finance. which I don’t think at this age I could do. Any predictions about the future of the industry? I think some of the hoopla that is going on today with private equity and hedge funds is going to sort itself out. you’ll find people are more than willing to share and help. You really just have to ask “did you ever face this?” and you’ll find that people will open up to you and share their experiences.EDU) 48 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. I believe that the finance acumen of the people in this country. what would your dream career be now? If I can’t play shortstop for the Pittsburgh Pirates. You can’t be a numbers guy. I’ve never seen it work when you go to somebody and say. “I want you to be my mentor. I’d like to run one of these big factories. and how he addressed problems. The intelligence and process of how Dick approached managing the business was incredible to me.” My view is that you develop a personal relationship and you nourish it. and those can be tremendously valuable. How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry in the absence of a formal program that some companies have? I have found that. The best mentor for me was Dick Boykin. and worked in the metals industry. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. I was also sort of intellectually curious and I knew I was going to have his job eventually. What other careers and life choice did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? I grew up in a western Pennsylvania mill town. people like to talk about themselves. was to be an engineer. So I went to engineering school and became an engineer. Actually. But I think the industry itself and people who are in the finance industry add a tremendous amount of value to our economy. and most people are happy to help younger people. depressing time and factories were closing. and our relationship slowly became a two-way street. and then turn it off at 6 o’clock at night. like myself.CMU. and it just all naturally evolves.” That was my dream and if I wasn’t in finance. So when I was young.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Duff & Phelps Corporation You really have to embrace it and live it. If you do that. my view was that “I’d really like to help these people. he eventually started confiding in me and sometimes even asking me for my opinions. Our discussions were very informal. . If you were not in the field. When I was growing up in the 1970s in western Pennsylvania.

EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. they don’t read The Wall Street Journal and they don’t understand what’s going on in the world around them as it relates to finance.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Duff & Phelps Corporation “I’m surprised how many young people go into finance and don’t really love business.com/finance for insider firm profiles.” — Daniel Peters. Segment Leader.CMU. message boards. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. Duff & Phelps Corporation Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Financial Advisory Services Business.vault. CAREER LIBRARY 49 .

CMU. human resources. He currently lives in Fargo. with his wife. 50 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault.EDU) Being part of a growing organization and specifically being able to develop other people. Those two things combined can elevate you to a natural leader. Stende has more than 25 years experience in public accounting. communications. providing client services in the area of auditing and consulting for a variety of industries. he was appointed by the board of directors upon recommendation of the managing partner to serve as chief operating officer of the firm. But I think being a good leader is the aspect of putting others before you and giving others credit instead of taking credit.. He served as Partner in charge of the firm’s Fargo. He also collaborates with the Managing Partner/CEO in the overall administration of the Firm. but learning how to interact with other people is something not taught in the classroom. N. Mr. finance.com Inc. Mr. Q&A with David Stende What are some steps you took to get in the position you are in now? There’s nothing better than a positive attitude and being a self-starter. twins Thomas and Hannah. Tonya. and training and development. predictive index or any of those tools you can learn yourself. who is a certified Dale Carnegie Instructor and president of Eide Bailly Training. Mr. N.D. Stende provides leadership to ensure the accountability of the regional directors and the partners in charge of the operating offices. Stende received his BS in business administration and accounting from the University of North Dakota and is a native of Mayville. Stende—Chief Operating Officer Chief Operating Officer Dave Stende is responsible for the daily operations of Eide Bailly and assists in attaining established operational and financial goals. Mr. What are some things you learned on the job and not necessarily in the classroom? How to interact with people. I think integrity is obviously first and foremost. see them grow in their jobs and being a part of other people’s success. effective executive? In addition to that positive attitude. In May of 2006. He also provides guidance to firm-wide department heads in the areas of business development. ND office from 2005-2006. . Stende joined Eide Bailly in 1981 and was promoted to partner in 1992. What personality traits or attributes make for a good. technology.Eide Bailly LLP David L. and being humble. Mr. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.D. Stende has two children. Simple tools like Meyers Briggs.

my mentors changed throughout my career. and trying to identify and communicate with them. I have colleagues that work 70 hours a week and they swear they have the ultimate perfect work/life balance.” If you were not in this field. How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? If you’re a good self-starter you will naturally find a mentor. and I wasn’t aware that I was supposed to be mentoring them. I think accounting is actually a very exciting career. “You know. Most people become accountants or number crunchers so they don’t have to deal with people and that’s all this business is. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. I’ve had a few people who looked to me as their mentor. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. which will cause consolidation in the industry. I’d like you to help me along the way. I love the career I’m in. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in accounting? Accounting deals with human interaction. so that you can progress along the way. I like what I do. what would your dream career be now? You know. Do you have any special techniques or methods that you use to maintain this balance? Just good old-fashioned open communication. I like getting up every day and coming to work. message boards. The thing I would do differently is I never had a direct conversation with them as mentors.EDU) Any predictions about the future of the industry? I think the demands are only going to increase rather than decrease as government regulation and oversight increases. it is dealing with people and having to sell your ideas. but if you can get a leg up on those personal skills.” Because I know. and that should be part of being a self-starter. But again.com/finance for insider firm profiles. or mentored others? As far as being mentored. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Work/life balance is really a very personal matter as far as how you define it. which is the most surprising. you’ll accelerate your career. there was a certain individual because those were the skill sets I needed at the time. and having that direct conversation with them and making sure they know that.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Eide Bailly LLP What has surprised you most about working in the accounting industry? I’d say it would be the human interaction. the baby boomers are retiring. as crazy as it sounds. you’re going to change your mentors a few times and you should.vault. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. it creates a whole host of opportunities for people in the field right now. In the first few years. doing things like taking Dale Carnegie courses or joining toastmasters and trying to hone their own personal development skills because technical skills you’ll learn along the way. I think it’s just being up front and finding the person you want to emulate at that point in your career. and it’s getting that understanding with your spouse and your family. Also. but at the same time. I would have been a lot more helpful to them had they explained that to me. saying. CAREER LIBRARY 51 . “Hey I’d like you to mentor me along the way. but as you evolve in your career.CMU. Have you ever been mentored. It’s the human aspect. Again.

I spent the early years of my career in audit at another Big Four accounting firm and I left to work for a client that happened to be an issuer of mortgage backed securities. having focused on the product and operational facets of the industry. nonprime. He brings over 25 years of experience as an accountant. HLTV and subprime sectors of the industry. Campo is a certified public accountant and is a member of the New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. We are far more than that—we focus not only on the accounting and tax side of the equation.Ernst & Young Global Limited Steve Campo—Partner in Financial Services Risk Management Partner Steve Campo joined Ernst & Young in 1999 and is part of a team of people serving clients in the financial services market. prime lending programs and the home equity. During that time. While I’ve had a number of career changes along the way. but we can serve our clients with very deep advisory services.com Inc. Mr. Q&A with Steve Campo What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? I have been through a number of career changes during my years. issuer. He also served as an issuer of public housing program MBS. including State and Federal housing programs. he has been involved in many product sectors.CMU. He is also the lead partner on the Government National Mortgage Association (GNMA) account. I would not trade my experience in the public accounting arena in the early days for anything in the world. That said I also enjoy working with people—being challenged 52 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. That’s what made this so interesting. Campo has considerable experience in the residential mortgage industry. It was a phenomenal education. Campo recently served as practice leader for the structured finance advisory services practice at Ernst & Young and previously as senior managing director and head of the structured finance group at MBIA Insurance Corporation. Mr. where he was responsible for oversight of the financial guarantee business in the mortgage-backed and asset-backed areas. . I moved from the controllership of that firm to the finance side and became involved in the issuance of securities. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? What would you most like to change? Each of the steps of my career has been incredibly enjoyable. I found the Wall Street side of the equation to be a lot of fun and eventually found myself in New York working at what was then Municipal Bond Investors Assurance Corp. financial guarantor and advisor in the securitization industry. because that’s really what I wanted to do. many people have found it interesting that I’ve gone full circle from starting at an “accounting” firm to coming back to an “accounting” firm. focused on solutions in response to the current credit crisis. Mr. and currently serves as a member of the ASF Board-Level Subprime Mortgage Finance Task Force.EDU) After more than 14 years with MBIA.. the accounting industry has changed and it’s a misnomer to classify Ernst & Young as just an accounting firm. the predecessor of MBIA. in the professional services industry. But. I came to Ernst & Young.

dedicated teams who are not only interested in meeting students. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. We are challenged everyday to manage very challenging situations. You’ve got to be a good listener. And. helping Ernst & Young build its practice. working with people and finding ways to make things work within has been extremely rewarding and very enjoyable. you have to be even-keeled.EDU) What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any special methods. We have very diverse. you have to be very patient. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? Two things. At school a lot of the focus is on learning the technical aspects of a discipline. effective executive? Well. and it is certainly a different environment in terms of being a regulated versus a self-regulated industry. Working with the junior folks keeps your thinking young. because whether you know it or not. CAREER LIBRARY 53 .View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Ernst & Young Global Limited to solve difficult problems. your assistant or your superiors. There are different considerations. It’s important to me beyond belief that my kids have verbalized that they know I’ve done everything I can to be at their important events and to know that I’ve made it home for those school night functions. What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? One of the things that I struggled with in school was cost accounting. people are measuring your every move. I was working with a client on auditing cost accounting measures when suddenly. I inherited a very small team of people and built it to a team of almost 200 people before we realigned the practices last year. I find this incredibly amazing and very gratifying. this lightbulb went off and I said. and that you value the significance of the impact you might be having. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. you’ve got to know you’re setting an example for everyone. It makes me look forward to coming to the office every day. patience—a lot of it. “Wow. Now I’m over on the advisory side where I’m currently part of the global financial services risk management team. you’ve got to be able to maintain balance. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. Everything you do has an impact on someone and it’s important that you understand that. that’s what that cost accounting course was all about. What I’ve truly enjoyed is the challenge of solving problems. Helping clients build their businesses. I find it amazing that no matter what client I am working with. And that has a sacrifice to it. but in helping faculty and universities achieve their goals.CMU. I had this sort of epiphany. I’m good at fixing problems and because of that it has made each chapter along the way very interesting. It was very exciting to develop these other skills that end up being equally important. or what problem I encounter. They keep challenging you and they find new and better ways to do things. different drivers. I came here to Ernst & Young exactly eight years ago to become the managing partner of what was then being started as the structured finance advisory service practice. I’m pretty good at building businesses. somewhere in the firm I can find someone who can help solve the problem. Perhaps one of the biggest things I’ve learned on the job is the importance of building relationships and being a consummate team player. one is that the accounting and finance industry today is so different from the one I entered over 30 years ago. message boards. I also find the recruiting side interesting because it is an opportunity to find great young people to join Ernst & Young. you need to master the technical aspects but you also need to work with people who have different styles and skill-sets and different priorities. When you are serving clients.com/finance for insider firm profiles. For instance. whether it’s the most junior staff person. But after I was in the business for a couple of years. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.” But I’m sure everyone has those little chapters in their lives that they can relate to. techniques or philosophies that help you maintain a balance and be a successful professional? Honestly I can say I feel very gifted and blessed to have a family who understands that I have worked very hard to maintain the balance between my professional and personal life. But the pleasant surprise is the wealth of knowledge and experience that is housed within Ernst & Young.vault.

In my youth. . these are truly unique times. accounting just seemed like a good place to be. than I would. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? If you were not in the field. and I strongly believe. I had to choose which of those paths I would take and I have no regrets about the one I chose. whether it’s in the accounting side or the finance side. The truth is I don’t know that I’d want any other position and industry. I truly love what I’m doing. what would your dream career be now? When I came out of school. that one person who would always look over my shoulder or who was the voice that could talk to me and help keep things in perspective. I can say that over my career I’ve had three or four people that I’d be willing to put my career in their hands and know that they’ll handle it just as well. Certainly there are things in everyone’s career that you can’t control and I’ve been blessed to have a family that understands that. that there are lots of great students that are coming out into the marketplace that have either an accounting degree or a finance degree or in some cases both. and it certainly has an impact.com Inc. It’s someone that you have to find. in that we’ve gone from the absolute hottest period in history to a period now where the market has cooled off for a little bit. Finance just became a natural transition. there were very few people in the family who even went to college. I was also lucky enough to have been given a couple of breaks. being intellectually curious and making everyone on your team shine will help position you for great success. at keeping a good balance.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Ernst & Young Global Limited At Ernst & Young. Accounting seemed like a good honest living and I took a liking to it. because I found that the accounting path led me to an interesting area in finance.EDU) 54 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. someone you’re willing to trust. having a great attitude. Have you ever been mentored. be it finance. but I certainly needed to learn some new things through on-thejob training. we emphasize flexibility and we encourage people to make sure that they keep their work and life in balance. and been successful. I was a pretty good musician. I always have been fortunate enough to have someone that I had a great relationship with. But we have found. and they’re well positioned to take on lots of different tasks out here and you have got to explore them. if not better. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? Well. Be passionate about what you do and focus on always being the best at your current job. I grew up in a very blue collar family. accounting or another field. It’s perfectly okay with me if I made it home for dinner that night and somebody needs to call me at 9 o’ clock because we have an issue that needs to be resolved. That’s just fine with me. At one point. You can’t ignore the current credit crisis. For anyone starting a career. But a mentor is someone that can’t be assigned. It capitalized on what I’d already learned. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. They are phenomenally talented young people. I have been mentored. and yes.CMU. But I’ve also tried very hard. or mentored others? A mentor is a very personal thing. I enjoyed it and it provided me a rewarding career path. Along the way. It’s finding a new level of operation.

EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. Partner.CMU.” — Steve Campo. CAREER LIBRARY 55 . message boards.vault. Ernst & Young Global Limited Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.com/finance for insider firm profiles.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Ernst & Young Global Limited “Everything you do has an impact on someone and it’s important to understand that. and to value the significance of the impact you might be having.

She has been married to her husband. Q&A with Sarah Meyerrose What are some steps that you took to the position that you are in now? I’ve had a lot of different jobs within the financial services industry. Anna. 56 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. The biggest thing I like to tell people is be willing to take a chance on yourself. including technology. Because it’s very important that you feel comfortable working with the people that you’re with. Tenn. Ms. then do the very best you can. operations and corporate real estate. I think just being very curious about different aspects of whatever industry you’re in. she moved to Johnson City. then First Tennessee National Corporation.. she was responsible for enterprise-wide shared services. So I think it’s very important when you have the opportunity to do something different. Meyerrose is responsible for commercial and consumer insurance. Don’t be looking for the next job until you really know that you’ve conquered the one that you’re doing. to be curious. In 1993.EDU) What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? First of all. to serve as transitional coordinator for the merger of Home Federal Savings and Loan with the bank and. even if you think it might not be exactly what your strength is. as well as employee services. Meyerrose—President of Emerging Businesses President of Emerging Businesses Sarah L. corporate treasurer and senior financial officer. in this case. prepare yourself for other things that might come along by reading. to take a chance yourself and to try out new things. to be able to ask questions and get good answers for them and once you’re in the right company. financial services. Meyerrose served on First Horizon’s original task force to introduce family-friendly principles into the company and has been an outspoken advocate regarding the strategic imperative of the company’s cultural evolution. Ms. was promoted to president of the bank’s Kingsport/Bristol operation.CMU. in 1982 and has held the positions of investor relations coordinator. new growth platforms including the convergence of health care and banking. I’d say it’s that along with constantly reading and learning and talking to people. Prior to her current duties. find a place that really fits your personality. and digital/internet banking for First Horizon National Corporation. She returned to Memphis in June 1998 to accept the responsibility for corporatewide employee services.com Inc. headquartered in Memphis. And as you do that. Mike. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. by volunteering for committees or assignments that might be outside your related work. whatever your particular job is at the time. for 29 years and they have an 18-year-old daughter. Ms. Meyerrose began her career holding various positions with Commerce Union Bank in Nashville. but most of them with one company. or you fit the culture. She joined First Horizon. Meyerrose received her BA in business administration from Vanderbilt University and an executive MBA from Vanderbilt’s Owen School of Management. . Tenn. Tenn. That gives you the opportunity to grow. in 1995.First Horizon National Corporation Sarah L.

the Vault Finance Job Board and more. why did that go so well. So it just makes it a little bit more complex to come to the right answer. And so you will naturally end up with someone that you can see and use as a mentor. does it make practical sense. and so usually when asked that question I like to say that you can learn from everybody. school prepares you for the technical aspects of your job. and what did that person do so well that I can learn from and vice versa. You have to be able to work with the individuals to identify what their talents and passions are. whatever that is.vault. just about everything. I wish I’d taken that opportunity. you have to talk very slowly. effective executive? I think you have to really appreciate the talent that everybody brings to the table. But the interesting part is how highly regulated we are as an industry. it actually makes the puzzle a little bit more interesting. Because you have to figure out how to do what’s right for your customers and your employees and your shareholders. but the job teaches you the practical application of it. But I think it’s important in every situation to say. The bottom line in all this is. CAREER LIBRARY 57 . and what I found surprising and interesting is that while the regulations can be somewhat of a burden. What has been the most rewarding aspect of your career? What would you most like to change? I would say the most rewarding aspect is that I have had the opportunity to do a lot of different things in different roles. So I would say. message boards. people who are good at process. gosh. I had a professor many years ago who said if you talk to a banker. and the most important thing that I learned from that and really the most gratifying. what have I just learned not to do because of what happened in that particular situation. But when you get into financial services. so they are motivated when they come to work and then take those various talents and put them to work in the right way. it’s when you’re on the job striving for a similar goal. So you have a team that is balanced. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? I think the thing that surprised me in the first few years was the perception about financial services. or mentored? How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. school is very important. Have you ever been mentored. while at the same time making sure that you’re following all the regulations. We don’t have specific programs.com/finance for insider firm profiles. you really have to think about how it works. I’ve been in sort of a fix-it role. our mentoring tends to be more informal.CMU. That is absolutely the most gratifying. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. what is the ultimate goal. While learning to collaborate in school can be helpful. you have a team that can accomplish things. putting the right people in the right seats and helping them develop so they could become more than they were before. and how does what you’re doing lead to whatever the ultimate goal might be with a real focus on customers and how to get things done. which is what people think about it. You have people on the team who are good at strategy. is finding the right people to get things done. particularly in the last few years. don’t tie everything to an individual. that you really learn how to operate within a team. You can learn from every situation. and learn from whomever you can and whatever situation you can.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals First Horizon National Corporation What are some things you learned on the job and not in the classroom? Oh. of how things work and particularly of how you really collaborate with people. We have regulators for everything. Although.EDU) Well. But I don’t think there were too many opportunities that I didn’t take. it teaches you how to think critically. Matching the talents and capabilities and strengths of the individuals to the tasks and the goals is the most important thing that a leader needs to be able to do. things I would change? I don’t know that there’s a whole lot that comes to mind other than the moments when you look back and say. In terms of change. people who are good at details. and what can I learn from it. A lot of people think it’s really boring. Take responsibility for yourself. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good.

career and your personal life in a way that brings you satisfaction. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? If you were not in the field. So I didn’t have to worry about it. I would have been frustrated and I wouldn’t have been able to have the career I have. I don’t have to do this. but I think that’s where we’ll go. If. But any industry. to help people develop themselves and be good contributors. I’m going to interact with my daughter a different way. nobody can really do everything. We’re seeing the effect of the globalization of the financial markets. I ended up in the business because I took a finance course when I was in college and absolutely loved it. then. and we’re going through a sea change right now. that’s not important. I’ve been very lucky about embracing what’s important to me. that wasn’t important to me and it wasn’t important to her. I’ve got a very stable family and a very stable marriage and that for me has been very good and very important. And so I feel at various stages of your life you have to step back and ask yourself what is really important to you. It was one of those things where I could say. and particularly financial services. the Bank of Americas. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. We’re seeing the effect of the euphoria of the housing market that is in major correction right now. Part of the reason we have seen an inverted yield for such a long period of time is that there are a lot of international dollars that flow into the United States that might not have several years ago. That’s a unique philosophy.CMU. professionally. the large foreign banks. Any predictions about the future of the industry? It’ll change and I don’t mean that to sound trite. community banks and in the middle will be specialty organizations that have a very special niche on a go-forward basis. the Citicorps of the world. As a personal example. What the timing would be is questionable. at the end of the day. goes through sea changes periodically. while she was growing up. physically. . personally. Well. ended up in the banking industry and have stayed ever since. spiritually.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals First Horizon National Corporation What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any special techniques. by any means. Then you can manage your time. I had felt that it was important for me to be at school as a room mother for her. But what I really love is the people aspect. I have a daughter who is now about to graduate from high school. feeling good about my ability to mentor people. There are certain things that just aren’t that important and so you can take the burden off yourself and say. and we’ll see very small.com Inc.” The reason is I feel the word “balance” implies that you have to give up something that’s very important to you to be able to conduct your life. I have been in financial services ever since I graduated from college. Well. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? Yes. I spent about nine years heading up the human resources department for this company and one of the terms that I grew to dislike greatly was “work/life balance. and that’s something I’ve kind of grown into. I believe what will end up happening is that the retail/commercial banking sector.EDU) 58 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. what would your dream career be now? Honestly. will see very large universal banks. I think it’s all about knowing yourself and being honest with what’s really important. That supermom thing is a myth.

personally...vault. so take the burden off yourself and say. spiritually and physically. step back and ask yourself what is really important to you professionally. CAREER LIBRARY 59 .com/finance for insider firm profiles. I don’t have to do this. First Horizon National Corporation Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals First Horizon National Corporation “I feel the word ‘balance’ implies that you have to give up something that’s very important to you to be able to conduct your life . President of Emerging Businesses.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. message boards.CMU. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.” — Sarah Meyerrose. There are certain things that just aren’t that important.

but the facts are all there! Developing the facts accurately is the first step in creating a good plan and that’s not easy. you’ll probably smash the deal. Werbalowsky earned his BA in economics. and we were well situated with a cadre of good leaders in our restructuring group.” “Buying and Selling the Distressed Company” and “Deleveraging the Troubled Company. Inc. . he was a member of Levene and Eisenberg after serving as an associate with Gibson. Werbalowsky was CEO of Cheviot Capital Corporation. my Co-CEO who was in our FAS group. 60 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. an investment firm engaged in transactions involving bankruptcy and distressed situations. Before joining the firm. Dunn & Crutcher. I was interested in finance and I changed to investment banking restructuring and joined Houlihan Lokey at a time when our firm was very small. “Reforming Chapter 11: Building an International Restructuring Model. He is a member of the board of directors and vice-chairman of the board of directors for Fram. from a purely operational roll to a dual role in restructuring and corporate where I am today. Mr. Mr. Werbalowsky also serves as a senior managing director with Houlihan Lokey.” “Advising the Distressed Company. I was at the right place at the right time. Mr. “Oh well. where he was a Stone Scholar for three years and an editor of the Columbia Law Review.com Inc. So I transitioned with Scott [Beiser].Houlihan Lokey Jeffrey I. based upon my perspective of this issue ….” “Allocating Value In Canadian and American Restructuring Transactions. Q&A with Jeffrey Werbalowsky What are some steps that you took to get to the position you are in now? I had a career in law.” and has testified as an expert witness on a variety of restructuring and distressed security issues. magna cum laude. Then it got to the point in our firm where we were under-managed on the corporate level. corporate reorganization and insolvency. where he practiced law and specialized in cases involving bankruptcy.” “Evaluating Distressed Securities. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. everything looks like a nail.EDU) What are some things you have learned on the job and not in the classroom? One of the biggest lessons is that you need a huge amount of focus and energy to bring into the “field” of the deal. from the University of Virginia and a JD from Columbia University. If you really don’t focus on the facts. Werbalowsky has written a number of articles including. Our restructuring group was very successful and I was the head of it.CMU. Mr.” it’s the whole key issue and they got it wrong! If you have a hammer. It’s very easy for people to come in and look at the facts in the way they feel most comfortable and say. Prior to that. Werbalowsky has led many of the firm’s largest restructuring engagements in his position as co-founder and global co-director of the financial restructuring group since 1988. You have to figure out what the facts are on the ground at the company yourself—in school a lot of times you’re given these complicated problems. so it buoyed my career from the get go. Werbalowsky—Co-Chief Executive Officer Co-CEO Jeffrey I.

so it wasn’t that hard a transition. a lot of times in complicated deals you find that people. Employing the proper terminology is always important. all our great analytical abilities and creativity. but I call it responsible delegation. That means people have to be coordinated. intermediate and junior people in a team all contributing. some good and some bad. I always was a believer in allocating and delegating responsibilities. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. From close by what surprises you is that they’re just people making decisions. In terms of being a good executive. You’ve got to be able to listen to people all around you. Maybe not a good trait for a CEO so it’s a good thing I have a co-CEO who loves problems. message boards. make sure you supervise them and give them enough input to do a good job. So people sometimes get to be CEOs by doing a great job and a lot of times they do a lot of it by themselves. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. I think the two most important attributes. That means that the junior people have to understand the whole view at least conceptually. and you’d be surprised how many bad decisions people high up in the world make on a continual basis. are making decisions based upon incorrect information and incorrect analysis. and a great many people do. No problems. I hate problems. figure out what they know and make decisions based on that input. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? The most rewarding element of my career is having our firm go from being a nobody in the investment banking world—“Houlihan Who?”—to having a very successful firm recognized for our excellence in restructuring. not to my face so much anymore. you have to have great team work and people need to be energized.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. at least for me. and happy that they are a part of something that I helped build. That means you need to let people do the fun jobs and some of the not-fun jobs. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good effective executive? For a CEO. I just like dealing with good things. corporate finance and valuation opinions. but when you get to be a CEO that stops being an effective strategy. You can apply them. that’s the world. it’s hard to determine them. Some of the best CEOs relish dealing with problems. if everybody always got the right answer then we all wouldn’t have jobs—I certainly wouldn’t. you just say. important dual qualities are being able to listen and communicate. and make sure you follow up with them. What would you most like to change? I hate dealing with problems. and then communicate those decisions and the reasoning behind them in a credible manner. From afar it looks like geniuses are at work doing brilliant projects.CMU.” In some ways. I don’t like problems. to a wrong set of facts that come up to the absolute wrong answer and people in school sometimes don’t realize that figuring out the facts is just as important as applying the creativity and the analysis. For me. very fallible people. CAREER LIBRARY 61 . I am very proud and take daily joy in having lots and lots of people in our firm be very financially and professionally successful.com/finance for insider firm profiles. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? Well. because normally you need to do that with senior. So figuring out what the facts are is kind of a critical predicate for applying all the things we love to do. I never did it all myself. “I’m so happy I came here” or “It’s so good to be here” or ”I’ve had so much fun and it’s all because of Houlihan Lokey. Even though that is initially a little scary.” I get a big a kick out of that. If I recruited someone and they say to me. Some may call it lazy. “That’s life.vault.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Houlihan Lokey It’s hard to focus on the facts. All those things are really important because CEOs who try to do it all themselves will find that they ultimately don’t do a good job. are the ability to inspire and the ability to responsibly delegate.

But on the other hand. It helps! But the best of all worlds is when you’re doing something that you love and if that something is good for you and your family monetarily.000 people screaming your name would be worth more than making a lot of dollars a year. but you do the best job you can with that balancing at the time. So figure out early whether you really love it and if you do. when I neglected my family. . Also. but they never really got around to mentoring me in a way that I look back on and say—“Wow that was critical. and that it’s too late to go back. So it’s important in your career to have a real.CMU. and spent way too much time working on the thought that I was investing my time then and the benefits would ultimately inure to me and my family in a way that made it all worthwhile.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Houlihan Lokey What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any special techniques. methods or philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? Ultimately to be a good CEO and a good member of a firm you have to take your responsibilities seriously and put a huge priority on your responsibilities to the firm. I know some people think it’s intrusive but I believe it frees me up to spend more time with my family. or mentored others? How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? I really haven’t been mentored much in my career to my detriment. There have been years when we were building our restructuring group. I was talking to my son the other day about how walking out with a guitar around your neck to 100. made a lot of money. My real dream career would be a rock star. 62 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. The worst thing to do is be done with your career. you have to do what you love. But on the other hand. Both very smart. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? I think finance is a great area. Today. I don’t need to keep feeling like there’s an emergency waiting for me. what would your dream career be now? I was a lawyer initially and I thought about doing other things in business. Be passionate about it. Because I don’t have to keep checking in. go for it. I’ve got some books in my head that I’m going to write. go do something else because money by itself does not buy happiness. Have you ever been mentored. At the same time. after I’m done with this career. it really can’t. I have a BlackBerry everywhere I go. I am not sure that all those trade-offs were wise looking back. I have a big interest in writing. If you don’t love it. and realized you really didn’t enjoy what you’re doing. My thought was that I was working hard to create financial security in the long term for my family. from an effort-to-benefit ratio there’s a potentially great professional satisfaction and monetary payoff. I had close relationships and still do with people I mentored and who are now senior officers. I’m a massive believer in technology. It’s one of those things you don’t realize you’re missing until you look back and see you kind of missed it. You have to figure out earlier rather than later whether you love finance. There were two people in my career who could’ve been in a position to mentor me and they both did some positive things and were well meaning but they were both dealing with their own serious issues. you need to put your family first. We have a formal mentor program now throughout our firm. Everyone in our firm all the way up to the vice president level has assigned mentors. But it’s not always possible to get there. So. that’s a great correlation. capable people. I think it’s a great invention for people who want to balance life and family. notwithstanding the criticality of what you need to do for your work. I can track all the fires and know when I need to jump in and can just relax and it makes me feel calmer to have a BlackBerry on vacation with my family. putting your family first doesn’t mean you drop everything about work—you need to continually prioritize. sit down discussion with your spouse early on as to what your collective goals are and what trade-offs you are collectively willing to make and that often does not happen. I have tried to mentor other people in our firm and I certainly got a lot out of it and I sure hope they did. because it’s hard to escape once you start down the road.com Inc. You need to plan ahead. the most important issues in life revolve around your family.” It makes me all the more sensitive to making sure that we have good mentors at our firm.EDU) What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? If you were not in the field.

message boards.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Houlihan Lokey Any predictions about the future of the industry? Things will go up.com/finance for insider firm profiles. things will go down. CAREER LIBRARY 63 . A big restructuring wave is now lapping at our shores.vault.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www.CMU. People will make fortunes. There will be a lot of failure and a lot of opportunity in the near future. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. people will be wiped out. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.

Invesco Ltd. finding the right people and keeping them challenged and motivated is the most important thing.S. it was having a broad spectrum of experiences. especially in the financial services industry where there are a lot of smart people with a lot of good ideas. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. For a job like mine. in 2002. where he focused on business strategy and mergers and acquisitions. Mr. Schlossberg most recently served as head of global strategic planning and corporate development for Invesco. but you definitely have to pick up. prior to joining Invesco. . Schlossberg received his BS in finance and international business from the University of Delaware and an MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School. It’s a topic I can talk about with anybody and they can relate to it. Most of our time is spent trying to figure out how to help people live better in retirement with their investments. U. He has served in multiple roles within Invesco’s businesses including head of business strategy for the North American Institutional division from 2003 to 2005 and manager of product development for the company’s Retirement division from 2002 to 2003.EDU) What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. Andrew Schlossberg—Chief Marketing Officer. and talking less sometimes is better. effective executive? Surrounding yourself with good people. Schlossberg served at Citigroup Asset Management and its predecessors from 1996 to 2000 as an equity research analyst on the U. it is actually having had experience on the investment side and the product side of our business and having had the benefit of doing that in multiple places. Mr. What do you think is the most rewarding aspect of your career? That the work I do is relevant to so many different people. Mr.CMU.com Inc. 64 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. that’s both global and spans across a variety of different disciplines. Q&A with Andrew Schlossberg What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? For me. What are some things that you learned on the job and not necessarily in the classroom? Being a good listener is probably the most important thing that they don’t teach you in school. Retail & Head of North American Retail Strategy Chief Marketing Officer Andrew Schlossberg joined Invesco Ltd.S. In a people business like asset management. large-cap value equity team.

and those sorts of things. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. Find somebody at your company who went to the same school that you went to.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Invesco Ltd. even if you don’t get the opportunity to work with them day to day. Rather try to help share your experiences with them so that they can learn from them while using them to tailor how they want to be as a professional. don’t always try to have somebody replicate who you are. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. message boards. I think informal mentoring is better. Find opportunities to demonstrate that you actually are a high achiever. If you had a choice. Even if your company has a formal process. because that’s actually not helpful for the other person. etc. and pick their brain and have lunch with them routinely. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? I’ve had an opportunity to live in a number of different places. or come to them with a complicated question and use that to develop a relationship. Interestingly. so it just became more natural for me. but I believe it’s been positive.. but I always liked understanding how it all worked and how money moved around. Whether its understanding how marketing works.EDU) There are a number of ways to do that. In terms of mentoring others. So find somebody at your job or in school. rather than something that’s forced. I didn’t know it was called financial services. sharing things about work with your family is actually a good thing. How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. As meaningful as all the academics and technical skills. anything to forge a relationship. but over time you’ll tend to use it more than you think.com/finance for insider firm profiles.CMU. and that’s been eye-opening and very rewarding. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on finance? I’ve always wanted to do something in financial services. At first it won’t feel like you are learning the right information to really understand. accounting. When you work at a global company you continue to have those kinds of opportunities. it’s the softer skills that will be more relevant as you advance in your career.vault. or is into the same sports team that you’re into. because it’s always changing and that means there is always something new all the time. make sure you branch out and expand your learning opportunities. or understanding organizational behavior or business strategy. financial analysis. I think it’s been a challenge. try to develop personal relationships. You always have to be constantly learning and improving. what would you most like to change? Probably making sure that I maintain a balanced life while making sure I take advantage of opportunities that have to do with things outside of my normal workday. I’m not a big believer in formal mentoring. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? How challenging it is. CAREER LIBRARY 65 . Truthfully. because they’re much stronger than arranged business relationships. but so they understand and appreciate what you’re going through is helpful. not to let it totally absorb you. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? If you’re still in school. Have you ever been mentored or mentored others? Yes. make sure you actually study some things other than finance. Do you have any special techniques and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance? No—that is something I need to improve.

com Inc. wherever that is. I just always thought that’d be a fascinating career.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Invesco Ltd. .EDU) 66 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. I actually think that it’d just be interesting to listen to people’s problems and try to solve them.CMU. Any predictions about the future of the industry? Things are becoming more and more global every day. so don’t focus exclusively on your home country. What would your dream career be? Psychologist. because it’s increasingly going to be just part of a whole. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.

message boards.” — Andrew Schlossberg.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. make sure you branch out in school. Invesco Ltd.S.com/finance for insider firm profiles. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. “Whether its understanding how marketing works or organizational behavior or business strategy. Retail & Head of North American Retail Strategy. but over time you’ll tend to use it more than you think.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Invesco Ltd. At first it won’t feel like the right information to really understand. U. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Chief Marketing Officer.CMU. CAREER LIBRARY 67 .vault.

68 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. which primarily come from experience.EDU) What are some things you learned on the job and not in the classroom? I view the classroom as the place to build your technical knowledge in finance or accounting. is a member of the Colorado Society of CPAs. When I speak with individuals outside KPMG. Fernandez has extensive experience with large national and international companies. He is also a member of the Chairman’s 25 leadership program. Mr. including faculty relations. AICPA. In fact. and the PhD Project. have mentors and take advantage of opportunities as they come along. and is a member of the Mile High United Way Alexis de Tocqueville Society. Mr. client conflict resolution and other types of interpersonal development skills. He currently serves as the trustee of the KPMG Foundation. Q&A with Manny Fernandez What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? As you progress through your career it’s important to build good networks. I did a three-year international assignment in Mexico City around the ninth year of my career.CMU. Building good mentors. or mentored others? How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? Over my career I’ve had informal mentors and formal mentors.500 mentoring relationships involving more than 15. He is a member of the firm’s Operations Committee and the co-chair of the firm’s national Hispanic/Latino Network. Today at KPMG. Fernandez received his BS in accounting from Fairleigh Dickinson University. That’s really the major difference between real live action versus just reading the playbook. which was a tremendous catalyst for the subsequent 15 years.000 people participating through internet-based tools where you can sync up with your mentors based on particular needs and preferences. We’ve found that mentoring is highly sought by our people and is really a key to successful career development. . depending on the corporate culture and programs in place where I’ve been. University Relations and Recruiting National Managing Partner Manny Fernandez is responsible for KPMG’s recruiting strategy and execution. good networks both with peers and with the people you report to and then taking advantage of good opportunities as they come along helps to enhance and build your career.com Inc.KPMG LLP Manny Fernandez—National Managing Partner. both of which are critical. I strongly encourage that mentoring relationships be pursued— whether through formal processes or informal relationships. Have you ever been mentored. there are more than 9. Working outside the classroom is where you find skill sets such as working in teams. He previously served as partner in charge of KPMG’s Audit & Risk Advisory practice for Colorado. we have formal mentoring programs available to all our employees.

In recent years the importance of public accounting and finance to the capital markets has come to the forefront. so you can formulate your position based on sound knowledge and information. Whether it’s in audit. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any special techniques. 75 to 85 percent of our professional employees are under the age of 30. what would your dream career be now? Starting pitcher for the Mets or the Rockies would be a good choice! Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. It’s a matter of blocking your calendar for those specific personal times versus work commitment. tax or advisory. and take advantage of internships during your college career as possible. I’ve really enjoyed the people interaction. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. effective executive? I think it’s being able to have a very broad understanding of business and the environment you’re working in whether it’s specific to a company or an industry.EDU) What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in accounting? If you were not in the field. I’ve been married for almost 15 years and I’ve got two children. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. whether articulating issues succinctly or being a good listener and understanding the positions of others. I’ll know when I have personal commitments with my family.vault. which five to 10 years ago wasn’t the first choice of finance or business school majors. We’ve been offering internships for more than 30 years. especially in public accounting.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals KPMG LLP What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? I had an internship with KPMG. So one piece of advice I would give a young college student is to make sure you explore various companies and firms. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? I think the biggest surprise to me is how the industry has evolved. At KPMG. One way to get an idea of what a career at a Big Four firm is like. because I’ll put my calendar out a month or two or even six months but I’ll know when the kids’ games are. methods or philosophies that help you maintain a worklife balance and be a successful professional? In order to be successful in any career I think you have to make certain commitments and sacrifices. be effective in managing your personal life. today there are more options than ever to find a rewarding career. very vibrant. message boards. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? What would you most like to change? I think the most rewarding part of my career is having the opportunity to experience a variety of areas within public accounting. I think communication and interpersonal skills with a broad industry understanding are key components of successful executives.CMU. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. good communication skills are crucial. compensation and responsibilities expected at each stage of an individual’s development. exciting place to work with great opportunities to work globally and with a variety of clients and industries. so I have been doing it for a fair amount of time. We’ve recently opened the site to the public to provide students and others considering a career in finance with a realistic view of potential career paths—along with the necessary skills. Planning ahead is a critical success factor for me.asp). Also.com/finance for insider firm profiles.kpmgcareers. CAREER LIBRARY 69 . I’ve worked in four different offices and had eight different roles within KPMG over my career. but at the same time. is to log on to KPMG’s career architecture web site (www.com/eca/index. I would also look at the different opportunities within finance and accounting. So it’s a very fast moving. which is great to see.

View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals KPMG LLP

I considered other career tracks, such as architecture and engineering. I loved history when I was in high school, but my choice was between finance and accounting. My dad was actually an accountant as well, so I kind of fell into it a little bit in the preliminary classes I had in high school. Choosing accounting as a major after my first year of college was a natural fit and very attractive to me.

You were actually born in Cuba, correct?
Yes, I was born in Cuba and lived there until I was eight-and-a-half years old, so I spoke Spanish before I ever spoke English.

It seems like you’re very involved in giving back to your community. How are you involved in your Latino network group?
I’m on KPMG’s National Diversity Advisory Board and I co-chair, as part of that, the Hispanic-Latino network with another partner out of San Francisco. We’re very much engaged as a firm in making KPMG a more inclusive and diverse place, and our goals are to attract, retain, develop and promote more Hispanic and Latino professionals. It’s really working to increase the pool of talent coming into KPMG, and then finding ways to develop and mentor them so they stay longer and hopefully develop skills that will improve their careers.

Any predictions about the future of the industry?
There are so many examples of CFOs and CEOs across corporate America who started their careers in accounting. The profession is an ideal place to launch a career and lends itself very well to other career tracks in finance. At KPMG, you learn not only about the technical side of accounting, but also an understanding of business as a whole. You learn about strategy, goals of organizations and how to be an effective leader. Now and in the future, it will be very important for accountants to develop strong communication skills, because the profession now dictates that people often work in large teams and you have to be able to communicate with your clients.

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View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals KPMG LLP

“There are so many examples of CFOs and CEOs across corporate America who started their careers in accounting. The profession is an ideal place to launch a career and lends itself very well to other career tracks in finance.”
— Manny Fernandez, KPMG LLP’s National Managing Partner, University Relations and Recruiting

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LarsonAllen LLP
Gordy A. Viere—Chief Executive Officer
CEO Gordy A. Viere has served in his current capacity with LarsonAllen LLP since 1989. Mr. Viere has full responsibility for leadership and management of the firm, including the development of its strategic direction. Mr. Viere is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), and currently serves as chair of the strategic planning committee, as well as having served on both its board of directors and council in prior years. He is a board member of Accountants’ Liability Assurance Company, Ltd. (ALAC) incorporated in Bermuda to offer professional liability insurance to its members and is a member of the World Presidents’ Organization (WPO) and currently serves as a board member and education chair of its Twin Cities chapter. Mr. Viere also serves on the board of directors of Junior Achievement of the Upper Midwest, as an advisory board member for various companies, and has served on many nonprofit and university boards and committees. Mr. Viere considers his most satisfying experiences to be those connected with helping children of troubled families. He and his wife, Diane, have had over 20 foster children live with them over the years, and have been involved with organizations committed to matching adoptive parents with children in situations where parental rights have been terminated.

Q&A with Gordy Viere
What are some steps you took to get in the position that you are in now?
When I started with LarsonAllen, right out of school, I didn’t have a goal to become CEO of the firm. I just did what I was taught from very early on, which was do the very best I could in everything I did, and most importantly treat clients and coworkers well. It’s like we are taught in kindergarten: treat people the way you’d want to be treated. So when the opportunity arose and the firm was looking for someone to take the position, that helped them to look in my direction.

What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom?
The most significant thing I learned on the job is leadership and doing what is right for those around you even though it might be difficult for you to do so at times. I also learned that people really want to be part of something special; almost all people want to do a good job. If they don’t, sometimes it’s fear, or lack of confidence, so they need encouragement, and I think one of the things we as a society forget is that we all need accountability. Someone to come up and say “how are you doing?” and “why do you seem to be struggling in this area?” People want to be part of something special and will do a phenomenal job if you are willing to encourage them, empower them to use their own leadership skills and then hold them accountable to do what they said they would do.

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What has surprised you the most about working in the accounting industry? It’s the stereotype that accounting professionals are these backroom types of people. Have you ever been mentored or mentored others? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. If I feel that I’m under more stress than normal or I feel overwhelmed. And remember that the employees of your organization are people like you and me. It couldn’t be further from the truth. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in accounting? If you’re going to go in any sort of business career. accounting is one of the best places to start in terms of giving you a breadth of experience you really can’t get anywhere else. take the information from every aspect.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals LarsonAllen LLP What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? No question the most rewarding aspect is watching young people develop into mature professionals. not only in what they’ve accomplished in their business career. who are very concerned and capable in working with their client base.vault.CMU. Watching people get an opportunity. their personality. caring people.” I am very much for an organization having a real open-door policy. So when people talk to me and say. CFOs and HR and marketing professionals. and the joy that they receive in getting that opportunity gives me the most satisfaction because I’m part of an organization that has provided that path. The accounting experience can only be an asset. I’ll come back a day or two or a week later. Most people in the accounting profession are very outgoing. take advantage of the opportunity. you ought to seek it out. their sense of enjoyment. When you look around and you see someone that you think would be great for you. CAREER LIBRARY 73 . What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any techniques or philosophies that help you maintain the work/life balance? I think my career has had a positive influence on my family. things go a whole lot better at the workplace. effective executive? I think good executives need to be able to make decisions.EDU) Yes. I’m not a big fan of programmed mentorships where the company has a mentorship program and says “here’s your mentor” or “here are three people you can pick from. put the people around you and the organization ahead of your own agenda. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. but their attitude about it. Another attribute is that to advance your personal agenda. including CEOs. What personality attributes or traits do you think make for a good. message boards. You get the opportunity to work with multiple businesses and all types of management teams. a whole lot better prepared to deal with those stressful issues. I’ve always recognized that when things are going well with my family. It allows you to see the many different ways that businesses are successful or are not successful. look for input from anyone and everyone who’s willing to give it and be willing to make a decision and act upon it. I know that if I am disciplined enough to take some time off and spend it with my family. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. We work very hard as a family so that no single element of our life (like work) becomes more important than our family life. I’ve been fortunate to have a number of very good mentors over the years although they have not been through a formal program The most effective mentors I’ve had have been where I’ve looked at different people and saw how successful they were (and when I say successful.com/finance for insider firm profiles. where should I start?” I encourage people to start out in accounting because you have so many opportunities to move to when you start there. their sense of fun. In other words. their sense of satisfaction) those are the people I would seek out and ask how they were able to accomplish so much and yet have such a great attitude about it. “I want to go into a business career. We make it a high priority to make sure that we spend the appropriate amount of time together.

those that look for it have more opportunity than they ever had. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in accounting? I really didn’t entertain any other choices once I became an accounting major. I’m very upbeat about our industry. I’ve always found that when I was ready to move or take on something more interesting or challenging or different. I think there’s more opportunity both from a job satisfaction and a financial standpoint than there’s ever been. but I was convinced that I would only be in there two or three years and that I would use that experience to go get a “real job. I realized it was actually really fun and exciting. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.com Inc.” an exciting job. If you don’t find that inside your organization look outside of it.EDU) 74 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. . the firm was always willing to let me do it. After being in accounting for two or three years. preferably a person in your own organization. There is much more change and complexity than ever before and when there is a lot of complexity and change. In our business we get to see so many other businesses in our day-to-day work so that there are often people you can seek outside your firm or even your industry for mentorship. So I never seriously considered a career outside the accounting industry. So when I look at the accounting industry today and look at the next 10 to 20 years.CMU. Any predictions about the future of the industry? The accounting industry today has more opportunities for people than I’ve seen in the 30 years I’ve been in this business. A large part of this was because of the culture in our firm where we allow people to change careers and take a different approach to their career or take a different direction.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals LarsonAllen LLP How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? Seek out people with similar careers to yours. What would your dream career be? A high school teacher.

” — Gordy Viere. message boards. CEO. CAREER LIBRARY 75 .CMU.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals LarsonAllen LLP “To advance your personal agenda put the people around you and the organization ahead of your own agenda. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.com/finance for insider firm profiles. LarsonAllen LLP Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.vault.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www.

Prior to joining Tiedemann. I was always interested in what made business tick. The schools I wanted to apply to had tough standards that I needed to meet. culminating as regional head of the private bank’s New Jersey group. Basically it was a maturing exercise at the end of my teen years. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.Legg Mason. So I had a job from a young age in a variety of fields. whether it was at the stable or the construction job or whatever. Sandler in Roseland. Over the course of growing up. because the world wasn’t going to recognize my brilliance. working was always expected of us. Those jobs were where I first learned about hard work and how to deal with people. compliance and private banking. O’Mealia served as president and CEO of U. Baltimore Urban Debate League and the Maryland Academy of Sciences boards and is a member of the New Jersey Advisory Council for The Trust for Public Land. My father ran a small business as had both of my grandfathers So I come from an entrepreneurial and business-oriented family background. If I asked the questions in the right way. Trust. to caddying. Q&A with Harry O’Mealia What are some steps you took to get in the position are you are in now? I grew up in a family business environment. O’Mealia currently serves on the Independent College Fund of Maryland.S. I always had a job of some sort. . N. trusts and estates. When I began to look at colleges. He has also served as president of O’Mealia Outdoor Advertising. O’Mealia spent 11 years in JPMorgan Company’s Private Client Group. including investments. It was the first time I was faced with not being able to talk my way through a problem. Harry O’Mealia—President & Chief Executive Officer. Mr. I got focused on a goal. Trust’s operations in New Jersey. he has oversight responsibility for approximately $3 billion of private client and institutional firm assets and all aspects of U. tax. Mr. Most bosses liked my curiosity and were willing to give me their thoughts. Legg Mason Investment Counsel President & CEO Harry O’Mealia joined Legg Mason Investment Counsel in 2005. I always asked my bosses lots of questions about why we did this or that. I realized that I really had to apply myself more.S. Early on in high school I wasn’t a great student. From mucking out stalls at a horse farm. a JD from Boston College Law School and an MBA in finance from Columbia University. he was managing director of Tiedemann Trust Company. I began to take my school work more seriously. to construction to doing a stint in my father’s business one summer and bartending. a family business. Previously.S. Trust Company of New Jersey.CMU. At U. specializing in client acquisition and relationship management.EDU) 76 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault.J. O’Mealia received his BA in English and history from the University of Pennsylvania.com Inc. president of Black River Media Publishing Company and as an associate in the corporate department of the law firm of Lowenstein. I either had the credentials to get in or I didn’t. The fact that I was a hard worker gave me the ability to ask questions and get interesting answers. Mr. Mr. Inc. I got thoughtful answers but in the end what really mattered was that I had to work hard and do my job right for them to respect me enough to pay attention to me.

To be an effective executive you have to have a general and realistic plan as to how you’re going to get where you want to get. Inc. People respect clarity. What sort of personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good effective executive? The most important thing is to understand who you are. In the business world I don’t think people are as impressed with how smart you are and what you’ve learned as they are with what you can do and how you do it. you have your course load. I like consensus. Whether you’re taking art. for example. a curriculum.com/finance for insider firm profiles. message boards. Foreign languages and music expose you to other cultures. I continued to work hard. Each of them was important in its own way. but I’m very good at others. I took most of my courses in the liberal arts program and in the end was an English and history major. You also have to be able to maintain a certain amount of flexibility. I watch him. It’s really important to understand what motivates you. But I respect him as an executive. seeing things from other perspectives. psychology. I could go on and on.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Legg Mason. I could say the same thing about the chairman of my company. There are few set time frames and no set syllabus. Circumstances change. I took a lot of different courses. What are some things you feel you have learned on the job and not in the classroom? It’s about understanding people. try to learn from him and then apply it to my own style of managing. Science and math help you analyze problems and see processes better. You have to have goals in mind.CMU. Having to work within a world of increasing complexity and accelerating speed of change has been a great challenge. what they’re trying to accomplish and how you work with them. I went to law school and business school after college where I learned more specific skills so I am lucky that I got a broad education first and then specialized later on. CAREER LIBRARY 77 . a lot of what you have to do is motivate people or work with other people. That being said. However. Understanding the ability to work with imperfect information is one thing I have learned on the job. and you have to understand how each of the specific elements should work together. It is very different from an academic setting where you have a teacher. you have to have a plan of how you’re going to get there. I am happy that I took so many courses in so many disciplines at that point. He has more experience than I do. you have to understand the critical elements for success. I also took business courses in the business school and a few in the sciences. Make it clear to those you work with how you will deal with issues. At the end of the day if you see yourself in a leadership position. I’m a different person. it wouldn’t work. Then I make a decision at the end of the day. That’s where the liberal arts are very helpful. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. You have to understand what your particularly strong traits or best attributes are. I’m more of an integrative person. Have certain principles and stand by them. With my background.vault. learn from him and then try to apply what I’ve learned in my own way. When I went to college. Chip Mason. history or literature. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. They’re very good at getting things done in their specific disciplines and that’s a critical part of business. I counsel younger people to expose themselves to a lot of other things. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www.” It’s really the arts as opposed to the science of managing. because you’ve done some things vicariously. to be the boss you have to understand your business well. a lot of other people. I wouldn’t be good in some things. what their perspective is. and you do your reading and show what you learned at the end of the term. I think they have helped me understand issues from a lot of different perspectives in a way that I would not have had I focused on any one discipline. but I try to do it in the context of a lot of inputs. English. what your style is and then put yourself in the right spot for your particular style. As opposed to a person who drives decisions primarily from his or her own worldview. what you learn in those fields are going to be very helpful to you later on. If I tried to be Jack Welch. Results matter. understanding what motivates them. I tend to be more collegial. I manage differently. He is a great manager and leader. Sometimes they are more valuable than the executive or boss. That’s what I call managing “the seams between disciplines.EDU) There are people who don’t want to have to deal with the sort of complexities of running a group. you need to always be willing to accept the fact that you may need to take a fresh look.

You have to understand there are going to be set backs. The biggest concern I have in the world today. working together. The world is too complex—so many inputs. bringing their unique contributions. or complex adaptive systems through studying biology. You may understand people better from reading Tolstoy. you’re working with people from other disciplines and suddenly those numbers almost start speaking to you. When you think of finance. If you had a choice. I think public companies are under quarterly earnings pressure and analysts are saying. So. . What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? One is to have as broad a perspective as you can. Of course there are measures of financial success. understand the world.com Inc. You will come to understand that all things have an impact on finance. get rich quickly. Most progress is made through groups of people. “we’ve had three bad quarters. read broadly. basic economics. So at some point during your career whether you do it through formal education or on the job with a great mentor. The quality of people that I’ve spent time with.EDU) Also. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. there are going to be periods when you wonder whether you are on the right track. 78 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. But we still need common sense. force yourself to meet lots of people. refamiliarize yourself with who you are and what you have set out to accomplish. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? Its multidimensionality. people who think differently than you do or who have had different experiences than you have had. as opposed to just being facts. energy. telling a story. integrity and a group that really executes our mission exceptionally well. there’s a proliferation of products and of complexity in the market. you have to work from the bottom up. I’m telling you that they can be made to squeal by whomever put them together. once you understand the basics. what I would most like to change.” People as they build careers tend to be very impatient. be successful quickly. Those all lead to short cuts.CMU. You will probably fail in some way at some point or points along the way. basic finance. An effective executive is more like an orchestra conductor than somebody who’s showing up with the Ten Commandments. but real success is being able to develop a team of people that is high quality intellect. what would you most like to change? I would expand time horizons a little bit. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? The most rewarding has been the successes I’ve achieved as a team and the fact that we’ve been able to work with wonderful people. but you absolutely need to know how the numbers work. I think that everybody is trying to compress things too much. you have to have a strong grounding in the fundamentals. teams of people. Our world is overcome with short term-ism. They’re looking to get out of school and go run the business. so many seemingly contradictory elements for any one person to have all of the answers. That’s one of the things I’d recommend for anybody—work with good people. they’re all important. things are moving much more quickly. and there’s no doubt that the base of it is quantitative but the fact of the matter is that while the basics are critical. bringing those to the leader who is someone who can integrate those things well and get the pieces to work well together. and being able to achieve success with them has been exceptionally rewarding. you have to understand basic accounting. You cannot fake it in this business and for my love of literature. A career is a marathon not a sprint and so is building a business. is the race to short-termism. Whether it is early career success or short term financial results. manage per quarter. Financial success seems to follow that kind of success. The other is to gain specific technical knowledge. But you have to take those opportunities to go back. Inc. If you are looking to build something that’s sustainable long term. when are you going to dump that business. expose yourself to smart people. there is math involved. Finally. their unique perspectives. you need to have a certain amount of humility. You have to be able to block and tackle. Don’t believe it when someone tells you that the numbers don’t lie. good people. figure out what went wrong and build on those weaknesses. The world is opening up. We’re much more global. you have to go about it thoughtfully and realize that it is not always a straight line to the top.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Legg Mason. whether they’re clients or co-workers. you think of it as a quantitative field.

This takes the edge off. I travel with my wife and my kids a little bit. I constantly seek out folks who I think are successful or people who I admire but I haven’t had a formal mentor beyond my parents. I spend time with each of them individually. my frustrations about not finding the right job. and kept searching around on Wall Street. something other than your business. be respectful of the mentor’s time. Sometimes it’s very random. but would not reach the goals I was setting for myself. CAREER LIBRARY 79 . He said that I’d get a job. My job has certainly had an impact on my family. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? I’ve been lucky in terms of my career. A thoughtful letter will go a long way. He encouraged me to go to business school. I work very hard in challenging environments. How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? I think people are very flattered to be asked so don’t be shy is my first word of advice.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. I did and that turned out to be the critical turning point for me. By that I mean things that broaden you. My wife is extremely organized and disciplined so she tends to keep things in line. I met with a guy in New York who thought highly of my parents. and they’re very willing to sit back and talk to someone who’s interesting in learning from them. People talk to me and take away what they think I’m good at. people who I’ve sought out in my career. It’s important that they see me doing everything I can to balance things and that if push came to shove they would come first. force you to think of somebody else other than yourself. I first ignored him for a couple of months. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any special techniques. you ask the person to just talk to you about careers in the industry.com/finance for insider firm profiles. Inc. it’s provided a good financial basis for my family. I just went in to talk generally about what I might want to do. looking for any advice he might want to share. or mentored others? I’ve had lots of role models and a lot of people whom I have taken advice from. I see me mentoring others in the same way. When I was thinking of moving over to the business side. Have you ever been mentored. We have a shore house where I spend decent chunks of time during the year and I have tried to keep weekends as sacrosanct as I could over the course of the last 35 years or so to be with my family. You never know who’s going to be the one who’s going to help you. keeping his advice in mind. There have been times when I couldn’t make it to events or I have been away from home a lot. It isn’t always easy. not having liked what I was told. Finally—and this is important—be sure to thank people for their time.e. have four kids and I think that whether it’s your family or your other interests. Be thoughtful about it.vault. He felt that I didn’t have strong enough basic skills in finance and business to excel in the particular area of Wall Street that I wanted to pursue. message boards. it’s important that you have outlets. I’ve met folks who proudly say that they haven’t taken a vacation in 20 years and I don’t think that’s healthy. He was in investment banking and he was the person who turned me directionally toward what I would be good at. I’m married. (These are called informal interviews—i. Most executives recognize that they haven’t gotten to where they have gotten alone. so I have had to force myself to carve out time for other things that are important. it is not a formal interview and neither side has anything to really lose). Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. You talk to a number of different people and somebody says something and all of a sudden a light bulb goes on in your head or hers and it’s a matter of perfect timing. chances are they will give you more time and thought than they say they will. I consider them more important than my job but they recognize that my job is important too. sometimes it gives a mental break. but my kids and my wife appreciate the fact that I really do try. You tend to get wrapped up in your job if you enjoy it. The second is to have an idea of what you want to ask. I decided at the end of two months that I should really go back to business school. I talked to a lot of different people and after not really finding anything that was right for me.CMU. which forces me to be disciplined about time. I’m sure I also give them plenty to leave behind.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Legg Mason.

I did well in each one and I liked each one. In terms of a dream career. Any predictions about the future of the industry? It’s going to continue to be more global than it’s been. thoughtful. I was in a relatively rigorous academic program in college. I love to play golf and I love to travel. well-balanced people with creative minds. I was a dual major. so those are out! Golf on the PGA tour would be nice. Inc. common sense and judgment to execute. My dad got very ill so I had to stop and go home and get into the family business.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Legg Mason. There continues to be a need for smart. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. there’s more data. There will be a continuing proliferation of products and more complexity but at the end of the day. Being Tiger Woods’ best friend would cover a lot of bases. They go to nice places and make a good living out there. even though there’s more noise. I’d like to play centerfield for the Yankees or defense in the NHL but I don’t have the skills and am now too old. what would your dream career be now? I considered teaching when I was in school. it really comes down to the fact that we are solely in need of people with good skills. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? If you were not in the field. . We need to attract folks who want to make this a professional career.com Inc. but on a relative basis we are growing less important. The United States will be the most important market for some time longer. there are more products and there’s more of everything.CMU. I was asked whether I wanted to go into postgraduate studies in each and I thought about it. but life took care of that for me. are looking at it long term and are looking at building our industry by creating more value for our clients than we extract for ourselves. Our industry will be more diverse than it’s ever been as the talent pool for employees expands. Our industry is limited by the fact that we continue to attract bright people who are more focused on the business of finance than the profession.EDU) 80 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault.

message boards.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Legg Mason. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. President & CEO of Legg Mason Investment Counsel. “Our world is overcome with short termism. whether it is early career success. CAREER LIBRARY 81 . Legg Mason. instant gratification or shortterm financial results.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www.” — Harry O’Mealia. Inc.com/finance for insider firm profiles.vault. I think that everybody is trying to compress things too much. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Inc.CMU.

In 2005. and other transactions on behalf of prominent real estate developers and investors. It is a lot different getting a wrong answer on an exam than giving a wrong answer to a client. effective executive? I believe you have to treat each and every employee with respect and to lead by example. O’Sullivan joined the firm in 1996 as a senior accountant initially serving in the firm’s audit department and subsequently the tax department. and other diverse businesses. Mr. he has successfully completed various real estate finance and investment courses at New York University’s School of Continuing & Professional Studies’ Real Estate Institute. I learned real life tax issues and problems and how to deal with them. He was also named one of Real Estate Weekly’s “Rising Stars. Winer & Evens LLP Scott O’Sullivan—Tax Partner Tax Partner Scott O’Sullivan has over 15 years of experience. At Margolin.CMU. property managers. nursing homeowners and operators. his achievements were recognized by Long Island Business News which identified him as one of the “Top Five to Watch in Commercial Real Estate”. including 1031 exchanges. cost segregation studies. I constantly applied analytical skills and maintained a healthy work/life balance.EDU) The most rewarding aspect of my career is that the tax law and its application are challenging and each day is different from the last. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. where he is heavily involved in tax planning and deal structuring. Q&A with Scott O’Sullivan What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? I worked hard.com Inc. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? What would you most like to change? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. . paid attention to detail but tried not to get stuck in the small stuff. Additionally.Margolin. You never know what to expect when you sit at your desk each day. Mr. continued to learn through education and reading. Also. Winer & Evens LLP. Mr. What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? On the job. 82 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. O’Sullivan serves in the real estate practice group.” Mr. O’Sullivan is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Long Island Real Estate Group. O’Sullivan received his BS in accountancy from Villanova University and an MS in taxation from Hofstra University.

CMU. However. I don’t ever want to regret not spending more time with my wife and kids. Have you ever been mentored. needs and issues. message boards. They have given me great advice and have also focused on areas that needed change. It is exciting and ever evolving as the tax law changes both at a federal and state level. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? In an age of instant communication. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? In public accounting.e. it is a challenge to maintain a healthy work/life balance. The demand for quality accountants is increasing but the supply is decreasing. I have the ability to remotely access my computer from home to catch up. I have been blessed with formal as well as informal mentors that have taken an interest in my career. etc. we have a mentoring program whereby employees can review several biographies and can speak to potential mentors before a mentor is chosen. it is easier said than done at times. North Carolina) due to the high costs of living on Long Island.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www.com/finance for insider firm profiles. Long Island is experiencing an exodus of younger professionals to different areas (i. Any predictions about the future of the industry? The industry is going through an interesting time. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? If you were not in the field. However. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? I would definitely recommend a career in public accounting as a tax accountant. Each day brings its own challenges and stresses but it is rewarding. you have many clients with different personalities. what would your dream career be now? My father is a CPA specializing in taxes and I pretty much knew at an early age that I wanted to do the same thing.. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. my dream job would be the general manager of the Boston Red Sox. Winer & Evens LLP What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any special techniques. CAREER LIBRARY 83 .vault. I have three young sons and I keep hearing from others that I must enjoy the moment as the toddler years go by quickly.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Margolin. If I need to leave work early for any reason. I have never felt bored or unchallenged in my profession. At our firm. It has been very difficult to find and retain quality candidates. or mentored others? How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? Mentoring is very important.

Then I advanced into leadership roles at the local office and in geographic regions. having been appointed audit and assurance services practice leader of McGladrey & Pullen’s Great Lakes practice in 1998. McGladrey & Pullen and RSM McGladrey work together to serve clients’ business needs. Scudder started in an audit position in the firm’s Schaumburg.McGladrey & Pullen. and reviewing multiple systems and other people’s accounting. LLP David R. analysis and analytical skills are built on the job and not so much in the classroom. Mr. tax and business consulting services to mid-sized businesses.CMU. an audit firm. LLP. . Scudder is responsible for directing the management and strategy of the assurance practice and overseeing the partnership entity. Scudder—Managing Partner Managing Partner David Scudder has served with McGladrey & Pullen. with concentrations in the manufacturing..EDU) What are some things that you feel you have learned on the job and not necessarily in the classroom? In the accounting and financial area. Scudder is a certified public accountant and holds a public accounting license in Illinois. In 2005. As far as the traditional hierarchy goes. As managing partner. comprised of roughly 700 partners. Ill. Mr. Scudder received his BS in business from Illinois’ Monmouth College and an MBA in finance from DePaul University. people interaction. Mr. So the basis that you had in college is focused on building that foundation that you take forward. I have reached the top. Though separate and independent legal entities. It’s a big benefit to work with people who are motivated and career-focused exclusively. Mr. I started out as an audit staff member and moved up through traditional ranks to manager and then partner with client responsibilities. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? From my standpoint. office and has served clients in a variety of industries. operates in an alternative practice structure with RSM McGladrey. finally taking a board of director role and ultimately the managing partner position. since 1986. a leading professional services firm providing audit. The nuances of different companies. but my progress continues in terms of administrative responsibilities. Mr. Currently serving as a managing partner. Much of what you do on a day-to-day basis is interaction with people. 84 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. much of what you learn in the classroom is a foundation and it isn’t—as much as I hate to say this— used on a day-to-day basis. Scudder was elected to the McGladrey & Pullen board of directors. Scudder previously served in an assurance leader role. distribution and service industries. it’s working with professionals. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and the Illinois CPA Society. Mr. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.com Inc. a partner-owned CPA firm. Q&A with David Scudder What are some steps that you took to get to the position you are in now? I had many steps along the way. McGladrey & Pullen.

but they’re hard to locate. You might run into limitations.EDU) Have you ever been mentored. If you’re at work and distracted by things related to your personal life. CAREER LIBRARY 85 . But it’s hard to find that person who’s willing to take responsibility for all aspects of your career. I’ve had many mentors along the way. You need to be able to communicate with people.vault. I found that when you’re not a burden on people. priorities and skills. Some folks are out there. what you really have to do is give your full attention to whatever it is you’re working on at the time. what would you most like to change? We’re a highly regulated business. and there’s always a lack of understanding of what we do. LLP If you had a choice. It’s a difficult balance. Personally. As long as you’re not exclusively focused too much on one or the other. I think I’ve been pretty lucky along the way.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals McGladrey & Pullen. You’ve got to be able to get the most out of people who have different priorities than you do.com/finance for insider firm profiles. Do you have any special techniques. or mentored others? Absolutely. methods or a philosophy that helps you maintain this balance and be a successful professional? From a philosophy standpoint. they will happily mentor you and happily share insight. If you’re going to get ahead. you’re going to have to have the skills to lead a diverse group of people who have different motivations. and you have to be out there and know the sales side of the business just as well. You learn very quickly that those same kinds of skills that you need in the rest of the business world are just as important in the finance area. you’re going to be able to succeed. ongoing relationship. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in public accounting? What you have to learn very quickly is that interactive and communication skills—both verbal and written—are absolutely key. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. There’s a lot more to it than that. It’s difficult to find that person as you move through your career. you absolutely have to have good communication skills. Otherwise things can get in the way. It’s difficult to find one mentor for every aspect of your career. Some people have one mentor and have a great. message boards. lead large or multiple groups of people. So you need a long-term view and you have to be highly interactive and have a lot of communication. effective executive? If you’re going to lead a big organization. I think the auditing profession specifically is not understood by a vast amount of the business community. and the way I personally do it is just observe different people and try and see what makes them successful and then try and replicate those skills.CMU. that’s not going to be beneficial. Many folks go into accounting because they’re not very comfortable in what they perceive to be more of a sales or an externally-focused environment—and that’s not the case. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. I think it’s perceived that when you think finance and accounting. you think of communicating in numbers. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. and generally not very well understood. I’ve tried to observe and interact with as many people as possible and gather what I can from their successes. I have a very supportive family and that’s been very helpful. What has most surprised you about working in the accounting industry? The biggest surprise is that it’s traditionally viewed as an independent and internally-focused job. from the standpoint that it hasn’t been a conflict. But there’s a give and take that you have to have and priorities are different at certain points in time. And vice versa—when you are away from work you need to concentrate and give your full attention to those parts of your life. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? It’s always a balance.

I never felt limited.EDU) 86 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. If you were not in the field. I just don’t think that is going to change significantly. and business is a very broad career choice and can take many directions. What I really think I did was keep my eyes open as I went through school. I really didn’t consider a lot of other choices. like running a business where I can apply all the skills I have learned. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. that could have an impact on us. You’re going to find people that are very successful in certain aspects and have traits that would help you in certain situations. The biggest change I think that we will see in the short-term is a global economy and global markets and internationalization. Let that mentoring process happen piece by piece. Any predictions about the future of the industry? There are a lot of concerns. and a lot of that was based on internal assessments of my skills when I was making those choices through school. what would your dream career be now? A leadership role.CMU. Don’t be so selective that you don’t learn from others. So don’t think that you can’t learn from that person and don’t think that you can’t be mentored by that person just because they’re not all things. . information technology has a big impact on the way we work. even though many of the perceptions I had at the beginning about accounting and finance—and what skills were necessary—ended up being wrong or incomplete.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals McGladrey & Pullen. finance is a component of business. LLP How can someone find a mentor in their company/industry? You don’t necessarily need to force it. If systems and data can be manipulated and accumulated so that you don’t potentially need the auditor to come in and verify or analyze. But maybe a significant portion of what they do is not applicable. To me. Certainly. We still have a lot of disparity between the way things are done and the amount of transparency that exists internationally.com Inc. What you get with that is more transparency. But I still feel that technology may just lessen the need to find data. Depending on the growth and where information technology advances take us—and depending on where government regulation moves us and what skills are needed—there’s lots of concern that ultimately information technology and systems will make the accounting and the auditing side of things go away. There’s always going to be a need to interpret data. What other career and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in public accounting? I didn’t actively seek many other career choices. I always felt like I could still conquer the new things that were thrown my way. or they have some characteristics or traits that you don’t want to emulate.

Managing Partner. message boards.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals McGladrey & Pullen. and generally not very well understood. LLP “We’re a highly regulated business. LLP Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www.CMU. CAREER LIBRARY 87 .” — David Scudder.vault. McGladrey & Pullen. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.com/finance for insider firm profiles.

I also had a pretty good work ethic. What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? The first thing I learned is that business isn’t as linear as what you learn in class. I would change the lows. The next step was matching my skills and interests with the appropriate job. In a perfect world. Prior to joining this group in 2000.com Inc. you sometimes deal with people making irrational decisions. What would you most like to change? Our business in banking is very dynamic. So that’s where judgment and ability to assess the situation comes in. When you’re dealing with human beings. as much as I enjoy the dynamic nature of it. Inc. That makes this job very exciting to me. obviously I would prefer that it always be up instead of down. In my job as an investment banker raising private equity funds. Mr. So for me. he worked at Arthur Andersen & Co. Bronner joined Merrill Lynch from Citicorp Securities’ global communications group. but you never know from day to day what’s going to happen in a market environment. in their enterprise group where he was a certified public accountant. strategy and at working with people. So for me it was appreciating what I learned in the classroom and adjusting it to the facts on the ground..CMU. It turned out that I was pretty good at accounting. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. or that the problem you have to analyze is not as straight forward as you learned in class. A lot of unexplained variables are what you have to deal with on the job. I think secondly it’s the academic preparation. it’s the camaraderie of working in a group environment with colleagues who you like and respect. 88 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. Q&A with Erick Bronner What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? It began with a personal inventory. It’s a market environment so there are market highs and lows. Prior to his investment banking career. Mr. So it’s getting the proper education.Merrill Lynch & Co. It’s never a dull moment here. which requires performing at a high level with folks who are very stern graders on a daily basis. I raise capital for extremely accomplished people.EDU) For me it is a couple of things. in my case it was an MBA and a law degree. . an MBA from Emory University and a JD and MST from American University. Erick Bronner—Managing Director Managing Director Erick Bronner serves in Merrill Lynch’s private equity fund group within the firm’s investment banking division. Bronner received his BS in business from Lehigh University. First it’s working with very accomplished people both as colleagues and clients. figuring out what I was good at. on challenging and difficult projects. Second. Erick was an associate in Merrill Lynch’s global communications group.

Everything from the most qualitative to the most quantitative are in finance. The key in this business is to be very good at the job you select and the Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. non-family life. Inc. which is your recreation. non-family life.com/finance for insider firm profiles. You’ve got to be someone who’s willing to come in and work harder than others to succeed. So I find myself always trying to react to the events around me more so than I would have expected to coming into this business.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Merrill Lynch & Co. what it is you want to do and how much of your time you’re willing to devote to this before you pick the career. which involves a lot of travel and long hours.EDU) The most important advice I would give them is figure out what your strengths are. message boards. what are you doing well. There are so many variables of life that impact our business that you could never predict day to day what’s going to happen. you have to be someone who people view as being credible and honest when they ask for feedback or when they give suggestions or when you’re presenting work product to them. you really have to enjoy what you’re doing. creates a lot of pressure to make the time I am at home as effective as possible and so for me what generally gets squeezed out is my non-work. The challenge is to make as few as possible. I try to focus very specifically on my job. in terms of your assessment of yourself. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. a lot of challenges. I try to create zones for each. Then I try to carve time out for the other sort of non-work. you can go a long way down the road to having a successful career and getting over the bumps that are inevitable.vault. This business involves a lot of pressure. your family life and your nonwork. The way I break it up. The good news about the finance industry is that there’s a wide swath of jobs. Do you have any special techniques. whether you are doing retail or institutional sales or some kind of complicated arbitrage or a sophisticated structuring job. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? The work/life-family balance is very challenging. extremely long hours. but if you are passionate about what you’re doing. I say you have your work life. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. in two ways. that you are good at and you’re working with people you like and respect. honesty with your colleagues and clients. It is tough to make it all work in a 24-hour day. as you get more senior it gets a great deal better. You really can’t replace hard work with anything else.. where do you need to improve. your religion and volunteer work. you have to be confident in this business. not to make the same mistake twice and to make sure your successes outdo your failures and it’s a lot easier to do that when you put yourself in an environment to be successful. there’s a lot of different jobs a person can do. first of all. a lot of sacrifice. So when I am in the office. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. what time and emotional commitments they are willing to give it. I would figure all that out first and then find a job that fits into those criteria. Also. Finally. you succeed in the end because passion enables you to get over a lot of hurdles. confidence. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? It’s a never a dull moment. non-family life. Though I must say. they look for what they feel is the hottest area to go into and they pick the area before they figure out what their strengths are. If you’re in a business like this long term. Third. In a business like this you are going to make mistakes. I assumed that there were certain principles that would enable you to predict certain outcomes with some level of certainty and that is definitely not the case. how are other people’s assessments of you matching your own personal perspective. CAREER LIBRARY 89 . My job. I try my best to focus on my family. When I came to this business. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? If you find a job that you enjoy. Often times I find a lot of folks thinking of careers. Second is honesty. and what they actually enjoy doing. The market is very dynamic and people tend to over-invest in things. effective executive? I think the first trait is hard work. passion. When I am at home.CMU.

I’ve tried to do the same for other junior professionals on an informal basis. Inc. What I can say is that in a world that is getting flatter. it is clear that globalization is making finance that much more important. and something where the hours and other demands they are requiring fit what you want to give it. or reactively to my questions. you are trying to emulate.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Merrill Lynch & Co. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? In a perfect world. with extremely accomplished people and there’s never a dull moment. Such that.S.EDU) The only thing I can tell you is that any predictions that I give you are probably going to be wrong. I would be a retired NBA point-guard. I’m an optimist that this business will flourish over the coming decades. How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? There are several ways. that the informal mentoring has been more helpful than the structured program that from time to time I’ve been a part of because it enabled me to identify the person most specifically positioned to help me answer the questions I needed answered or provide the kind of advice I needed. I would probably work as either a professor or running somebody’s political campaign or something that’s very different from what I am doing now. such as buildings and facilities. I couldn’t have found a better job category for what I like to do. But that not being an option. Hence. an alumnus of your university or people in organizations you belong to who can provide guidance outside of the business.. what would your dream career be now? I struggle with that. when I started in this business. Any regrets? I find investment banking to be for me the closest thing to a quasi-professional career in sports in the sense that it’s a highly competitive business. with public markets springing up all over the world. I think the field of finance is growing as the world is becoming flatter and as the need for financial intermediation becomes a global imperative. 90 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. but for me I’ve had a lot of folks who’ve been helpful on an informal basis. I probably cared about what was going on in the U. Most of it has been informal but all of it effective. Third I would find colleagues who share something in common with you: for instance. ask the human resources department. something very unstructured but yet active and dynamic. I was a public accountant for a couple of years and then went to law school before I entered the investment banking world. and you’re in a position where you are always proving your value on a daily basis. I’m not sure what else I am qualified to do. whether building new businesses or creating new infrastructure. The way of least resistance is always looking for a formal process. now I care about what’s going on all over the world. in theory. Have you ever been mentored. . I’ve tried to provide guidance and thoughts as well as help them avoid some of the pitfalls I fell into.com Inc. something that your skill set is suited for. in the sense that people along the way have taken the time to help me either proactively with suggestions. or mentored others? I would say I have had lots of help in my career along the way. I find for my career. Those are the people who are best positioned to assess your skill set and how you’re doing and those are the people who. chances of you being good at it are a lot higher if it’s something that you enjoy. I’m sure for other people.CMU. I find most corporate organizations today have formal processes to provide mentorship. Any predictions about the future of the industry? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.. So for me. The second way is to look to the senior people on the project that you’re working on. structured programs may have been more helpful. If you were not in the field. So as a professional. Everywhere you go. I think if I wasn’t doing this. I enjoy this job. I would say. people are going to need financial solutions.

message boards. you succeed in the end because passion enables you to get over a lot of hurdles. Inc.” — Erick Bronner. a lot of sacrifice.com/finance for insider firm profiles. Merrill Lynch & Co. Managing Director. This business involves a lot of pressure. CAREER LIBRARY 91 .EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. extremely long hours. “You have to be confident in this business. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.CMU. Inc.. a lot of challenges. but if you are passionate about what you’re doing.vault. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. And passionate..View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Merrill Lynch & Co.

Q&A with Christopher Schmidt What are some steps you took to get into the position you are in now? I think the biggest step that I took to get to the position I’m in now was clearly choosing the accounting profession. and assumed the role of president and chief operations officer. He is an At Large member of the AICPA Council. Five years after joining Moss Adams. In 2004. The perception from the outside is you’re sitting at a desk and you’re crunching numbers. I don’t particularly like being in the spotlight. with vendors. mountain biking and many other outdoor sports. he was admitted to the partnership in 1991 and in 1997 became the managing partner of the Orange County practice office. It’s such a dynamic business.EDU) What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? I think the most rewarding aspect of my career is watching the people around me that I’ve worked with in all my years at the firm grow and develop and become successful. I prefer the team and my people that are working with me to get the glory. and is currently on the board of the Moss Adams Foundation. Schmidt received his BA from California State University Fullerton. What are some things you feel you have learned on the job and not in the classroom? The importance of written and verbal communication. an order of aging and elderly Catholic nuns. 92 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. People who communicate clearly and in a simple way tend to be more effective than others. Then your interpersonal skills are so important to how you move up inside the organization. personnel task force. which provides support for environmental causes and is involved with Sisters of the Holy Faith. . He is a past board member of the Surf Industry Manufacturing Association (SIMA).Moss Adams LLP Christopher G. I take a lot of satisfaction out of that. when really you’re interacting with the client. Schmidt has three teenage boys and enjoys snowboarding. he moved to the firm’s administrative offices in Seattle. Schmidt—President & Chief Operating Officer President and Chief Operating Officer Christopher Schmidt joined Moss Adams LLP in 1986. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. He is committed to the accounting industry and a number of charitable organizations. Mr.com Inc.CMU. Wash. People have to understand clearly what you want them to do and in what direction you want to take them on. you could do well in this industry. He has served on the firm's business assurance committee. The second step was acknowledging and identifying how important people were in this business. with bankers. You learn technical skill-building in the classroom but you truly realize what a people business this is only when you get out into the business world. Very early on in my career I realized that if you took really good care of people that work with you and around you and worked as a team. Mr. with attorneys.

which makes it rewarding.EDU) What advice would you give a young person considering a career in accounting? When you look at all the different choices you have as a young student. The clients and the business that I started with 22 years ago at the firm have changed. whether it’s dealing with the tax client or an assurance or consultancy project or in a partner meeting or a staff meeting with your peers. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. I have many mentoring relationships with the people around me. I’ve been very fortunate to have been mentored by some very outstanding people throughout my public accounting career. What has surprised you the most about working in the accounting industry? The importance that interpersonal people skills have in all that we do.com/finance for insider firm profiles. And yes. It’s a two-way street. It’s not just business. I will go out of my way to impart anything I possibly can from a personal or professional point of view. When people think about CPAs they think about tax returns. but they may not be extroverted people that would aggressively pursue a mentoring relationship.CMU. it’s all the aspects of that person and how they’re developing. keep your eye out for them and look for that touch point where you’re able to help them develop. challenging and rewarding career and it’s been in a constant state of change. It’s much more dynamic working in a public accounting firm than what the classroom or even the public would think. Part of choosing a career in public accounting would be to try to get a look inside an accounting firm. you want to make sure that what you choose. but you have to be able to sustain effort.vault. message boards. I’m not a strong fan of formal mentoring programs where you have to be mentored by an individual. Sometimes perception and reality are two different things. It consistently and continuously changes each day. effective executive? I think if you’re going to be an effective executive you have to have a high energy level and it doesn’t have to be an extroverted energy. personal tax returns and when Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. The mentor has to be able to adapt their style to the individuals they feel need it. CAREER LIBRARY 93 . learning how to talk differently to different groups of people. If you have some talented people in your organization. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. you have to step out and look for someone who you think may be a good mentor for you and you as the mentee have to make an assessment. you’re passionate about. You have to be patient as an executive because it takes time for the entire organization to wrap their minds and operations around the strategic direction you’re going. I don’t think it’s natural. and communicating with clarity that you want the organization to communicate is very important. Network with your friends and students and classmates. as a mentor. you have to. A part of it has to do with my taking an interest in watching someone develop. communications skills are key. get involved in some of the campus clubs so you can see what it’s really like inside a firm. or mentored others? I have been actively mentored throughout my career. So patience is very important. Have you ever been mentored.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Moss Adams LLP What would you most like to change about your career? I’ve been blessed with a very dynamic. How can someone find a mentor in their company/industry? I believe like-minded people tend to gravitate to each other. So I don’t have to worry about me changing things. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. My job has been changing from the day I first stepped foot in this firm and that has made it interesting and always very challenging.

Do you have any special techniques or philosophies that help you maintain the work/life balance and be a successful professional? I think time management is an overused buzzword.EDU) What would be your dream career now? I would teach high school biology and coach a high school varsity football team. organizational development consulting. auditing and tax projects for very complex clients. Once you’re inside you realize how many different avenues you have to have a successful career in this business. I think one significant change that’s going to take place.com Inc. There are important things that happen in the firm and then there are things that happen around you and I call that “noise. I’m a strong believer in delegating down to your team and surrounding yourself with really good people who are very capable of doing stretch assignments. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? When you like what you do. I contemplated selling. things happen that you can’t schedule for. it drips down into your personal life in a positive way. I could go into private industry or government. you’re able to strive towards that balanced life that everybody talks about so much and that’s really what I try to do. You learn to adapt to regulatory change and market change and a mix of people. you have a fiduciary responsibility to your firm. I chose public accounting because.” If you can move yourself away from the noise and into the important things. as an executive in a large firm. and I’ve always worked very hard to maintain a balance between my family and the things that I like to do personally and work. because sometimes. Those are great tools for the wireless world we live and I believe that those really help you attain a work/life balance when used properly. I’ve always focused on that. Any predictions about the future of the industry? The future of the industry is going to constant change. I make sure that my time is effective. which allows them to grow as leaders. And allow them to not bother your BlackBerry sometimes? I don’t have a problem with BlackBerries. I could stay and go into public accounting. When I come into the office. or I go out to an office and I’m with partners and staff. you manage your schedule a lot better and when you manage your schedule a lot better. I’ve always enjoyed what I do. without knowing how far or where my career would go. and that’s something that’s very important. you think about information technology consulting. You can let the day manage you or you can manage the day and that doesn’t mean that I’m a linear person and I have to check the box. It’s changed from the day that I started back in the summer of 1981. I think when you move into a position where you have a lot of responsibility. is taking 94 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. My family knows that I’ve always liked my career. it used to be call into the office and get voicemail or it used to be paper messages and then voicemails that you would always clear.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Moss Adams LLP someone in the profession thinks about the business. It’s the place. .CMU. You need to figure out ways and network as much as you can to see what it’s like inside a firm and make sure it’s something you truly are passionate about. We’ve come a long way. However. marketing and sales because I was naturally good at that. Rely on that team. Also. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. it is something I think that’s very effective. What other careers and life choices did you consider before decided on accounting? I always wanted to be a business major. long before “work/life balance” became a buzzword in the business. efficient time. I thought it would be a great transferable skill. and give that team the opportunity to perform and give them reinforcements when they have small failures because that truly is a learning process.

com/finance for insider firm profiles. CAREER LIBRARY 95 . At Moss Adams. I think more women business owners are just going to start dominating the market over the next 10 to 20. the other significant thing that we will face is the continued globalization of our business and dealing with Pacific Rim companies. message boards.CMU. approximately 20 percent of our partners are women and I believe these numbers are just going to continue to increase.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Moss Adams LLP place and it continues to take place is the number of women and minorities that are entering the business world and our profession. Asia. Also. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.vault.

com Inc.CMU. he was asked to rebuild and lead Nationwide Financial Network’s Exclusive Agency Distribution Channel. customer services. Michigan. He subsequently held positions of increasing responsibility in human resources. and financial sales supervisory consultants to work with over 3800 exclusive agents and registered representatives to market financial service products.Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. I enjoy seeing other people succeed and this comes from helping our customers achieve their financial planning dreams. 96 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. national sales manager for Nationwide Retirement Solutions.EDU) What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? Most of everything. He subsequently earned the Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC) and Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU) designations from the American College. He transitioned from the Property Casualty Companies to Nationwide Financial in 1997. Mr. He also holds the Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter (CPCU) designation and as well as the 6. life sales specialists. Mr. leadership skills were learned more on the job than in the classroom. Houle was the vice president. he oversaw a sales team of over 400 licensed sales representatives and qualified for the Nationwide Financial Sales Conference three consecutive years. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. marketing and agency development. Thomas F. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? I really like seeing our organization grow. Nationwide Financial Network Vice President Thomas Houle began his career with Nationwide in 1980 as a commercial underwriter. 7. 24. . In that role. Houle received his bachelor’s of business administration from Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo. ChFC—Vice President. the leader in 457 deferred compensation plans for public employees. Exclusive Agency. Q&A with Thomas Houle What are some steps you took to get in the position you are in now? I’ve progressed in the financial services field now for 28 years and one position led to another. He and his two Regional Vice Presidents lead a national team of territory sales directors. How to effectively motivate and inspire people. In March 2006. Houle. CLU. My career path has been pretty traditional by industry standards. 26 and 66 FINRA registrations.

effective executive? I think you have to have honesty. If you don’t have that. message boards. This includes travel to 49 states. So nothing but upside potential. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? I love the quote “when you’re green you’re growing.EDU) Probably a park ranger! I love the outdoors and that would be the real office. just continue to stretch yourself. Professionals enjoy passing on what they have learned over the years. We are in a noble profession in that regard. I’m a big believer in continuing education. Do you have any special philosophies or techniques that help you maintain your work/life balance and be a successful professional? It’s always a challenge. what would your dream career be now? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.CMU. which has been a great experience. I wake up each day excited about new opportunities. What other career and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? I just kind of evolved into it. If you had a choice. That’s really important for me. people know they need to take on more responsibility. I stay in physical shape. I really do appreciate what I’m doing. all help achieve this.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co.com/finance for insider firm profiles. The demographics are in our favor. When you’re ripe you’re ready to rot. most importantly. It’s a rare situation where people won’t take the time to help somebody else out. I think the best advice would be to just ask. people aren’t going to work with you very long much less with full commitment. What personality traits or attributes make for a good. Have you ever been mentored or mentored others? Very much so. CAREER LIBRARY 97 . so whether it’s a designation or an MBA. What has surprised you most about working in the finance industry? The greater need that people have for retirement planning. which products that our customers continue to need advice on and services continues to surprise me.” Definitely get a strong base of knowledge. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. what would you most like to change? I don’t think anything. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Professional success has allowed me to grow personally. If you were not in this field. including product knowledge. I was in the property and casualty insurance and moved over to financial services within Nationwide. integrity.vault. I have had several mentors and I mentor others all the time and if they would like the help. So it became a natural move and a smooth transition. I think just trying hard to separate yourself personally and professionally and carve out quality time. we are looking at strong growth. Any prediction about the future of the industry? It’s very optimistic. which provides more energy and keeps me focused. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.

Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. . Ferro overseas Parente Randolph’s accounting. compensation. When I did have a choice I think I did pretty well in that department. I would like to think I did it on my own but that would be extremely far from the truth. LLC Jeffrey L. auditing and various issues related to the senior living services industry. Q&A with Jeffrey Ferro What are some steps that you took to get to the position you are in now? Well. He also serves on the firm's executive committee. Ferro—Chief Operating Officer Chief Operating Officer Jeffrey L.com Inc. I also think that my background and who I have associated myself with has gone a long way to help me in my career. New Jersey and New York. billing and collections. being a team player and being dedicated goes a long way. work ethic. skilled nursing facilities. Mr. In addition.Parente Randolph. continuing care retirement communities and home health/hospice agencies. Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants. I think hard work is a key factor. His responsibilities include staffing and scheduling delivery of client services. One of the biggest attributes of getting to the position I am in now is I really enjoy what I do. I also have been able to generate friendships with outstanding individuals who helped me along the way. Ferro is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. He is a certified public accountant in the states of Pennsylvania.CMU. Mr. My wife has been unbelievably supportive and has been a key factor in my career and success. You also need to strive towards possessing and gaining leadership skills and demonstrating leadership attributes. Ferro has spoken before many professional and educational groups on the subjects of accounting. Ferro received his BS in accounting from Pennsylvania State University and has supplemented his education with a variety of continuing education courses.EDU) 98 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. LLC. I believe it’s something you need to do. business plans and budgeting. Mr. Who you end up with as parents is a luck of the draw kind of thing and this is a category where I would consider myself pretty lucky. As chief operating officer. Mr. personal care facilities. I would start with my parents and upbringing. cross selling and performance and appraisal systems. Ferro’s responsibilities have included audits of health care clients. client acceptance and retention. People help people and I have been on the receiving side of that equation big time. auditing and tax practices. Ferro also serves as the principal in charge of the Philadelphia Region with Parente Randolph. Mr. American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging. He has over 20 years experience in public accounting and has concentrated his efforts in senior living services. T hings that might not come naturally to some come easier to me because I really enjoy what I’m doing. Pennsylvania Association of Non-Profit Homes for the Aging and New Jersey Association of Non-Profit Homes for the Aging.

A certain amount of empathy is also necessary. and the most rewarding aspects for me. and the way you do things may be accurate and they may be right but that doesn’t necessarily mean that the way other people do things are wrong”. They may not always agree with what you’re doing and they may not always like what you’re doing. If you’re pursuing a career or you have a degree in something that you really don’t like or you are really struggling to stay with. you have to feel some self-achievement. I believe that the college experience is much more than just the classroom. being able to deal with people on your own and being away from a home or family environment. You need to do it and you need to do well in it. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. aggressive professional who’s going to achieve a lot in his career. seven days a week. most of what I’ve learned was on the job. It may take hard work. try not to be rigid. and you’re part of the group. and don’t think of yourself. something you enjoy and that doesn’t necessarily mean being easy. effective executive? You need to be a good listener. because if the group moves ahead. voicemail and laptops Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. Hard work is part of being prepared. and it’s not always salary increases. I’m not trying to discount that the classroom is not important. What would I like to change. That would be some of the strongest advice I’d give. It’s not always just a promotion. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? There is no substitute for hard work. “you may be correct. I think dedication is an attribute that all successful people have. It’s the foundation. I believe these types of leadership skills are important. you have to be rewarded internally to be able to do a good job. in what I would define as relatively short periods of time. I think some of the best advice that I received as a young professional was.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Parente Randolph. Now that doesn’t mean that the classroom is not important. you’ll move ahead as well. I think some of this comes naturally and some you can learn. the things outside of the classroom that helped most were. You really need to find something that you like. coming into early adulthood. You also need to be able to walk the talk. You need to be able to put yourself in their shoes and although you may not make the same decisions that they would you need to at least understand where they’re coming from and their point of view. I define luck as being prepared at the opportune time. CAREER LIBRARY 99 . is the 24/7 work week perception. but at the end of the day. What are some things that you’ve learned on the job and not in the classroom? I’d say that in order to do my job. LLC What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. message boards.vault. and try to be a team player. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. It’s a pat on the back. You need to be fair and people have to look at you as if they can trust you and know that you’ll do the right thing. I would actually say I learned more in college outside the classroom. Try to move the entire group ahead.com/finance for insider firm profiles. It would be difficult for me to say that there’s a direct correlation of things that I learned in a college classroom setting that I apply to my job today. I think that BlackBerries. its people recognizing that you’re doing a good job and people actually willing to follow your lead and recognizing that you do have leadership attributes and you do have leadership qualities.CMU. They’re willing to trust what you’re doing and put their career in your hands as well. you need to be dedicated. you’re just compounding things by going into it as a profession. Most people don’t just step into this and it’s not luck or being lucky. but the bottom line is they always need to believe what you’re doing is fair and that you’re not playing favorites and that you’re treating everybody the same. So you need to be open to suggestions. PDAs. growing up. Also.EDU) What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? What would you most like to change? Probably the most rewarding aspect of my career has been the ability for me to move up from position to position. but it’s really just a foundation for what’s about to come. It’s just too hard the next morning to get up and go do something you don’t like. I think you also need to be a team player and you need to be open to other people’s suggestions. were working hard and having other people take notice and being rewarded for it and getting that pat on the back. I also have to go back to: you need to enjoy what you do. I’ve always been considered a young. You can’t dictate and preach one set of ideals and one set of rules and then have a different set for yourself. For example. I think that a lot of people believe if you’re going to be extremely successful you need to work or be on call 24 hours a day.

but you have to go through your career recognizing that change provides opportunity. In my career I’ve picked successful people who happened to be my bosses and I would consider them to be my more important mentors. I realize that my career will not allow me to attend every one of my children’s events but I most definitely plan on attending the ones that count or mean the most to my family. If I could change one thing. Your ability to react to change and successfully deal with change is going to give you an advantage. Basically people that you like. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. It is also all about the quality of time and not the quantity of time you spend on the personal side of the equation. There’s been no looking back. I believe it’s going to get even more competitive than it is today as our economic model become more global. First. That also does not mean that we can abandon our sense of urgency or ignore deadlines. Sometimes you will need to make difficult choices but in the long run those choices need to match up with the priorities that you have. Have you ever been mentored.CMU. it would be the 24/7 work week perception and its importance as it relates to success. or mentored others? How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? I have been mentored and I still am being mentored. I also mentor others and am considered a counselor to several people who report to me. It has become brutally competitive and there is no end in sight. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? I think the pace of change has really surprised me the most. I think you need to go towards those individuals and try to create a relationship. I often remind the people that work with me that we are accountants and most likely no one is going to live or die if we do or don’t get that last spreadsheet or tax return out today. In the first 10 minutes. Change is something that you need to embrace. I have witnessed too many people who have put 100 percent of their efforts on the work component and have ended up with a disaster on the personal side.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Parente Randolph.EDU) What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in accounting? If you were not in the field. It’s not a one or the other situation as well as one cannot dominate the other. and you need to deal with. Second. a good organization is going to have a formal mentoring program and if you’re a young professional seeking employment you want to make sure that the organization that you’re working for has some type of formal communication program where you have an opportunity to get feedback upward and downward. Having a successful career includes being able to balance your priorities. you need to also find people that you respect and trust. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a good work/life balance and be a successful professional? I think you need to prioritize to maintain a work/life balance. 100 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. You don’t necessarily have to like it. .com Inc. Individuals can be successful without being tied to their BlackBerry or being tied to their PDA. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any special techniques. The real turning point was my first accounting class in freshman year at Penn State. and receive and give feedback regarding your career. You can see what they’ve done with their careers and you can picture yourself being like them or having similar characteristics to them. what would your dream career be now? There really were no serious contenders to accounting. The second thing that’s surprised me the most is just how competitive it’s become. If I had to stop being an accountant and I had a good enough story to tell. I wouldn’t mind being a public speaker. I liked the professor. I think there are two pieces to that. You need to really determine what your priorities are and you need to maintain the ability to do certain things that keep those priorities balanced and in check. LLC have all probably added to that perception. We must continue to know what is important to us and make a continuous effort to balance our work/life priorities. and I really connected.

LLC Any predictions about the future of the industry? I think change is going to continue to happen and it’s going to happen at a faster pace.vault. I think that the household name corporations in the country have experienced this firsthand and it is not going to stop with them. message boards.com/finance for insider firm profiles. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. That is really not new news and I certainly am not the first to point it out.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www.CMU. Eventually everyone is going to feel the competition because people are going to demand and expect more from us. CAREER LIBRARY 101 .View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Parente Randolph. We are all going to have to be on our A game all of the time. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. I think that the days of having a loyal customer or client forever are over and that you are going to need to prove your worth or value proposition on a daily basis. I also think that the competition is going to continue to get better and competition in general is going to become more severe than it is now. The more successful will rise to the occasion and others will not.

working with young. and we all decided that we would move forward to start a company together and Perella Weinberg Partners was formed. I lived in London while I served in that capacity and returned to the United States in 2005. Brunswick School. Mr. I left after having served as chief executive of Goldman Sachs International for seven years and came back to the United States. and three children: Sidney.com Inc. Then I met Joe Perella and Terry Meguid. and served on the management committee for six years. . I really learned a lot about how to engage with such people and it’s been something I’ve enjoyed and found to be a real challenge. There are a lot of smart. Weinberg is on the board of BAE Systems PLC and GLG Partners. Q&A with Peter Weinberg What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? I spent almost 20 years at Goldman Sachs. Mr. He also co-headed the partnership committee. He was elected partner of the firm in 1992.CMU.EDU) One of the most important things that I learned on the job was being able to deal with difficult people. The firm has offices in New York and London and serves companies. capable people. based in London. Mr. Debby. adding value to important people and important clients. a private financial services firm. it was working hard and never forgetting the importance of trust and integrity. He has been committed to many educational institutions and currently serves on the boards of Deerfield Academy. What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? Firstly. which formed the bulk of my career. co-headed the global investment banking division. in June 2006 to provide M&A advisory and alternative asset management services. Weinberg graduated from Claremont McKenna College in 1979 and Harvard Business School in 1983. I entered Wall Street in 1979 as an analyst at Morgan Stanley and if there was one thing that I did between then and now consistently. families and institutions around the world. both are based in London. The Kravis Leadership Institute and the Kings Academy in Jordan. There’s nothing more fun or stimulating than that. Secondly. Weinberg has been in the investment banking industry for over 25 years. As far as personal success goes. 102 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. I think those are the two things that are the most important as one continues in their career.Perella Weinberg Partners LP Peter Weinberg—Founding Partner Partner Peter Weinberg co-founded Perella Weinberg Partners. Prior to co-founding Perella Weinberg Partners. He currently lives outside of New York with his wife. when I decided that I wanted to start a new company. capable people in our industry but there are also a number of people who are not easy to deal with. smart. he served as chief executive officer of Goldman Sachs International. Charles and Henry.

that those people share your values. I think there’s always a way to step out and be with your friends and your family. effective executive? I think transparency and honesty is very important. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good.vault.com/finance for insider firm profiles. and I have learned a lot from very sophisticated people who I’ve called my mentors. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www.m. Would that be formal and informal mentoring? I find that informal mentoring is the best and it really depends on what issues you are seeking mentoring on.EDU) I have been very lucky to have had wonderful mentors—but it’s been hit or miss. because in the end your family is all you have and it’s been very important to me to keep that “front and center. For that to happen you need to be open and straightforward with people.CMU. I’ve always been very focused on putting my family first. around 5:30 to 6:00 a. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? I get in very early in the morning. The growth of this industry has been absolutely extraordinary and it’s been exciting to be part of that growth. I also think that a good executive must be able to have the ability to delegate effectively. in the morning so I don’t get to see my family then but I do that in order to get home in the evening. Now working at a startup is a lot of fun and it’s a great way to craft a new business that reflects your own values. That’s very important. It’s very healthy to have other interests and it helps you perform better at work. even if it means delivering a tough message. which is a very essential thing for me. you need to show flexibility in your commitment to work but at the same time. both at Morgan Stanley early in my career and then Goldman Sachs later. But people love to give advice and I’ve been a prolific user of advice from people who are more experienced than I. When I joined Wall Street in 1979. Those are the three factors that transcend the kind of industry you select and are by far the most important issues to me. I’ve tried others and they have worked wonderfully. I’ve tried certain mentors that haven’t worked. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? It’s all about the people you work with and you have to make sure most importantly. or mentored others? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. CAREER LIBRARY 103 . But the ability and desire to seek advice and the ability to take it is a very important feature of a successful executive.” Do you have any special techniques. which you can share with the partners and all the associates. message boards. the value of the Wall Street firms was probably 1/100th of what it is today. that you respect them as professionals and individuals. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? I feel it’s enhanced my personal and family life. and now in our new firm. I worked in a very large organization for most of my career. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? The growth of the industry has been the most surprising by far. Have you ever been mentored. Picking the right people and delegating is very important because if you don’t. people need to be able to trust their leaders. and that it’s a comfortable and appealing working environment.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Perella Weinberg Partners LP What would you most like to change? I don’t think there’s anything I’d like to change. your people won’t develop and you will be less effective. As a younger person in the business.

it’ll be very fast changing over the years ahead and I think that provides for a fantastic career opportunity. but I started working at Morgan Stanley and then went on to Goldman Sachs.” I may try to get involved in some project in the Middle East that has to do with bringing the Palestinians and Israelis together. The pendulum swings back and forth in the financial services industry and now it is swinging a bit toward the negative but it’s a very exciting industry and there is enormous potential. unencumbered by conventional thinking. I am a founding trustee of King’s Academy in Jordan. I was considering working for a medical products startup company in Baltimore and I was very excited about the idea of being an entrepreneur. and it wasn’t till 2006 when I really become an entrepreneur at our new firm. what would your dream career be now? When I got out of Harvard Business School in 1983. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. it will grow again.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Perella Weinberg Partners LP How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? A mentor-mentee relationship is a very personal one on both sides. But I think there’s certain chemistry involved and I like to go seek out my own mentors. creative people. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? If you were not in the field. In “my next career.EDU) 104 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. both very large companies. but I have no doubt that in the future.com Inc. So what I’ve always done is tried to find someone who had an interest in mentoring me and someone who I got along with and then we would work together on various projects and it was all very effective. Any predictions about the future of the industry? The industry right now is in a state of contraction. I’ve also been involved in a number of projects in Israel and am very committed to and interested in that area. . It’s a place for smart. I remembered that thought.CMU.

Weinberg. unencumbered by conventional thinking. it’ll be very fast changing over the years ahead and I think that provides for a fantastic career opportunity.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Perella Weinberg Partners LP “The pendulum swings back and forth in the financial services industry and now it is swinging a bit toward the negative but it’s a very exciting industry and there is enormous potential.CMU.com/finance for insider firm profiles. message boards.vault. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. creative people. Founding Partner. Perella Weinberg Partners LP Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. CAREER LIBRARY 105 .EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www.” — Peter A. It’s a place for smart.

divestiture and merger transactions in both the public and private domain as well as debt financing and restructuring assignments. Office Depot. Well. So. Quigley serves in the mergers and acquisitions Group with Peter J.. Inc. 106 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. retail and distribution. Del Laboratories. Mr. Mr. consumer products. and general industrial sectors. I applied for an associate position in my firm and made the jump from private banking to investment banking. DIMON Inc. Inc. public company M&A. I enjoyed that for a few years after college. Quigley has executed a number of transactions in a variety of industries. Morgan Securities in the mergers and acquisitions group.EDU) What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? I had a great experience in the classroom at NYU’s executive program. So.. it was learning M&A contracts. in graduate school they want you to look at valuation based on a company’s financial projections and that’s the purest way to value a business. that’s how I got into investment banking. but at the end of the day. Inc. Q&A with Andrew Quigley What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? I started my career in private banking years ago and was a relationship officer for high net-worth individuals. Mr.. Tokyo Electric Power Co. Solomon Company Andrew L. to put ideas in front of clients. . Solomon Co. and an MBA from the Stern School of Business at New York University. So I applied for and accepted a position in NYU’s executive MBA program while I was working in private banking.com Inc. The people were great. Quigley received his BA in economics from the Trinity School of Arts and Sciences at Duke University.. Mr. The valuation. Niagara Corp. Dick’s Sporting Goods. you don’t have a good set of financial projections. Prior to joining PJSC. Quigley’s clients have included Cardinal Health. Inc. sell-side. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. so you have to use alternative methodologies such as how comparable public companies trade or precedent transactions to figure out what the valuation might be.. Once an investment banking associate. both clients and co-workers. He has also worked in various positions in Chemical Bank’s private banking group. those are really building blocks and the real world puts limitations on the theoretical abstracts. I tried to build a toolkit of skills that I thought it would take to be a successful managing director. how to negotiate. It soon became clear to me that I wanted to do investment banking. and to deal with CEOs etc. For instance. corporate finance and M&A classes were invaluable.P.. Initially it was learning valuation skills and as I became more experienced. largely speaking... He joined the firm in 2002 and has over 12 years experience representing clients on a variety of assignments including buy-side. McKesson Corp. including the healthcare. Quigley was a vice president at J. it became apparent that the career path in private banking centered on managing bank employees and it didn’t really challenge me in the way I wanted to be challenged.CMU. and Walgreen Co. Inc. but as I became more exposed to the job and to the financial world in New York.Peter J. many times in the real world. the classroom’s knowledge is limited sometimes by what you can use in practice. Harrah’s Entertainment. Quigley—Managing Director Managing Director Andrew L.. Priority Healthcare Corp.

which is why I am here. You have to have a strong tool kit because there is a confluence of accounting.” Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www.vault. You have to get a good read on your client (e. Going from a large firm to a small one for me was a lot about changing what was important to me and being at a much more transparent organization. commuting really gets in the way. one of the most important things is to stay connected to your friends and retain the ability to be spontaneous.g. you have to have good ideas because much of this business involves going in front of clients and showing them acquisition ideas. From a personal standpoint. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. when a company misses its numbers in the middle of a process or the CEO gets fired or one of the buyers of the company that you’re looking to sell backs out. I had vowed that I wasn’t going to work for another big firm. it helps to live close to your workplace early on in your career because when you’re working intense hours. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. Solomon Company In real life. It’s challenging because it’s not easy and it is nice to meet new clients. Sometimes that involves you advising them to buy this company at a certain price and sometimes if that price doesn’t work. Also. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? Helping clients build their businesses and working with them to determine the right strategy. and they invite you for a weekend getaway. CAREER LIBRARY 107 . so I think that’s really important because it is a big time commitment and both of us understanding that upfront helped a lot. I came from JPMorgan Chase to Peter J. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. legal and finance issues. tax. What would you most like to change? I actually made an interesting change. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? I went into investment banking with a very clear understanding of what it involved and my wife did too. Also.EDU) Also. you really have to listen and understand what those objectives are.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Peter J..CMU. you have to be driven because the work is hard and the time commitments are demanding. This way you don’t have the tendency to look back 20 years later and say. You will have periods in investment banking when you’re really busy and then you’ll have a free weekend or two and if you stay in touch with your friends. they shouldn’t buy that company. For junior people. Finally. As you become older and more experienced and if you have children. Five years ago. Solomon Company. there’s much more complexity and there’s no way to teach that in a classroom setting. you really have to work hard to stay involved and relevant to your children both on the weekend and during the week. It becomes your job then to guide them tactically on how to accomplish that. Many clients are trying to build a bridge between strategy and tactics and want to be in a space but need help getting into it.com/finance for insider firm profiles. So if someone’s having a recital at the end of their school year you may think it’s not important but it is. effective executive? If the ultimate goal is to help your clients achieve their tactical goals. “I wish I had done that. you should be able to spontaneously say yes. What are their strengths and weaknesses? What is their relationship with their board of directors?) You have to be a good listener and then you need to be a good communicator because much of dealing effectively at a high level in investment banking is not just understanding complex problems and analysis but being able to convey and synthesize those issues into a series of very clearly understood principles for others. because every client is different and every set of challenges a client presents is different. message boards. If you don’t like that part—helping clients—it all gets tiring fairly quickly. it’s a lot harder to teach someone what happens when a deal doesn’t go the way it’s supposed to. the work is exciting.

Today you have the subprime lending debacle. and they feel disconnected with what’s going on in the organization. They base decisions relative to the deal before and lose all sight of the fact that you’re at an all time high. You’re not going to have a great experience if you look to cut corners. that’s the most important part. my wife and I had a policy where we go out every Saturday night. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. the social circuit in New York and people in your hometown. helping him understand how the numbers would have been different and how our conclusion would have been different. Solomon Company Do you have any special techniques. or mentored others? I have. the alumni network. At the end of the day you need to be sure you want investment banking. there are more junior people. friends of friends. It’s a double-edged sword for a junior person because you get the exposure to more senior people but at the same time you have to be on your A game because there are fewer people to comment on or proof your work before it gets to a managing director. Long Term Capital Management blew up. You should really want to be here and treat every new deal as an opportunity to learn something new. The important thing is. people have a tendency to lose sight of absolute values and completely focus on relative values.EDU) How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? Most people are flattered to be asked to be a mentor. For me.CMU. maybe there’s a connection there or maybe I’m going to talk to people in the class ahead of me or my class who had summer analysts positions. I’m not looking for someone who spent 10 hours on our web site because that’s one-dimensional. Later. I want someone who went through our web site and thought. work with a new person or have another person in the firm compliment your work. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? I think what surprised me the most is how cyclical the business is and how history repeats itself. Call it date night or whatever.com Inc. 108 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? Understand what you’re getting into. Over the course of these cycles. Understand the job of an investment banking analyst or associate. I have two children and she works hard taking care of them all week. The nice part here is as a senior person you can take the time with a junior associate who’s doing an analysis for you and discuss with him why you asked him to run these numbers. OK where have all these people gone to college. you ought to come into this thinking and wanting to be a success. It’s a subset of networking which is an important skill for young people to develop. think broadly about who could be a mentor. and whether he/she understands why we’re doing this. Secondly. and how this is important to the end goal of what we’re trying to do and that if the circumstances had been different. I try to get home in time at night to see my kids. You get to the end of these cycles and then the bubble bursts and everyone gets back to reality and the bubble starts building again. You can’t be afraid to ask. and if I can’t. Have you ever been mentored. We’re fortunate to have a more flat organizational structure. At larger firms you tend to have more formal programs because the senior people in the firm have much less interaction with the junior people. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? From the moment I started in investment banking. both in formal and informal programs. when I go out and talk to analyst and associate candidates. no matter which is your reason. it’s our time. In October of 1989. so it’s our time to be together alone. Person to person contact. but a lot of people do it because they think it’s the best training they’ll get and then go out and do something else. . From a recruiting standpoint.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Peter J. I try to see them in the morning before they go to school. You cannot underestimate the importance of having a personal network as you build a career. there are so many nuances about what someone’s experience was like and what firms are like. A lot of people do this because they want a career in investment banking. You can meet people through professional associations. because it is a big time commitment. the United Airlines buyout blew up and the rest of the M&A market went into a slump for a couple of years.

CMU.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Peter J. message boards. Mergers and acquisitions is here to stay as a business. When these elements are present. technological changes. and that’s why I can’t help but put in a plug here for our firm. People have different ways of giving back and that would be my way. changes in health care or changes in government spending programs that will continue to create opportunities and be disruptive to existing business models. then I’d like to be a history teacher. I took a white sheet of paper approach to my job search and considered what I wanted to do next. I considered investment management and corporate development but came to the conclusion that I really liked investment banking and that this is what I really wanted to do. before I came to PJSC.vault. I think there are underlying trends in the economy whether globalization. if I am fortunate enough to have a second career after this one. Solomon Company What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? If you were not in the field. mergers and acquisitions often happen because companies need to change strategic direction quickly and cannot do so organically.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. what would your dream career be now? Several years ago. However. CAREER LIBRARY 109 . There will always be a need for mergers and acquisitions to solve clients’ business needs.com/finance for insider firm profiles. Part of the reason people hire experienced investment bankers is because they have been through more than one cycle. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. Any predictions about the future of the industry? The cycles will continue to repeat themselves.

Too often an employee new to a group walks in and does not ask: “Why are you doing it this way? Or. Mr. What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. In 1997. figure out where the current business practices make sense and where they don’t. I believe my career has benefited from that focus. Whitford—Chief Administrative Officer Chief Administrative Officer Thomas Whitford oversees corporate communications. operational risk.EDU) One is that “information is power” and information leads to a more effective organization.com Inc. enterprise risk management and the insurance group. . Doing so improved my understanding of the company and our business. I took that step. but it doesn’t make their employees effective. Whitford joined PNC in 1983 and has since held leadership positions in consumer banking. Whitford helped PNC sharpen its strategic focus and coordinate risk management activities corporatewide. It also helped me build a network of people. This empowers the team and makes the company more successful. to increase employees’ effectiveness. credit policy. Whenever I was offered the opportunity to move to a different part of the company in a different role. because I could rely on that network for support. I am a firm believer in sharing information with my subordinates as well as my peers. I’ve always concentrated on what was best for the company. human resources and internal audit for The PNC Financial Services Group. market risk management. Often managers guard information because they believe it makes them more powerful. Mr. then. The second is the importance of supporting a culture where employees are willing to challenge the status quo. which allowed me to be more effective in subsequent assignments. He was named to his current position in May 2007. risk analytics.CMU. and. Mr. Also. Whitford serves on the boards of directors of Pittsburgh’s Dance Alloy Theater and Robert Morris University. Whitford received his BS in psychology from the University of Massachusetts and an MBA in finance from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School. He was named chief risk officer in May 2002 with responsibility for credit policy.PNC Financial Services Group. His responsibilities also include directing the activities of PNC’s regional presidents and overseeing PNC’s risk management program. Q&A with Thomas Whitford What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? I was always willing to take on new assignments. 110 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. they accept too quickly: “We have always been doing it this way!” Their insights could be very helpful in enabling us to break out of a pattern that isn’t as effective as it could be. Thomas K. asset management and strategic planning. when they do ask. Inc. he was named chief executive officer of PNC’s wealth management business. raise their hands and challenge what we’re doing today. As the executive in charge of these key areas within PNC. internal audit. Mr.

the number of regulatory bodies involved in our industry today surprised me. Financial services careers require technical Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. what their development needs are. Their understanding is so limited. I talk with my wife to make sure we are aligned in terms of expectations. One. and the industry keeps introducing complicated products for sale to customers. I think it sends a positive message to them about the importance of a work/life balance.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals PNC Financial Services Group. I spend a lot of time trying to understand the people who work for me. Third.CMU. So we spend lots of time talking. I do that for two reasons: one is to help keep me in balance. Second. We have sacrificed time together and some of our flexibility for the financial rewards my career has provided. but I always come back to the same three.EDU) Also. and then finding opportunities to capitalize on their strengths.com/finance for insider firm profiles. Inc. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. because it’s tough enough not being able to get home. It is surprising that an industry as sophisticated and regulated as financial services ended up with this large a disconnect. message boards. and by that I mean talking as well as listening. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? There are two things I do. and how the company should respond. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? The most rewarding aspect of my career is the development of people. Do you have any special techniques. If you choose financial services. When you change assignments. you need to pick a career that you think you’ll enjoy. customers’ needs and preferences. a more tactical thing. that really doesn’t work out well. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? First and foremost. You need to be a strong strategic thinker: someone who understands market forces. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. There is a different regulatory body for each aspect of a financial services company. but if she’s not aware of that and she’s making plans. If they see me take my vacation. what their strengths are. It’s given my wife and me a lot of opportunities to do things that we wouldn’t have been able to do otherwise. You should have some fun at work. You must be willing to stand up for what you think is right.vault. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? In one obvious way it’s been rewarding financially. CAREER LIBRARY 111 . but you lose the daily contact. But it has also been time consuming. you need to take the time to understand the fundamentals of the financial markets. while ensuring I am creating opportunities to help them develop new skills. It’s not that you lose those relationships. and disappointment. you need excellent communication skills. I’m not sure customers understand what they are buying. and two is to serve as a role model for the employees who work for me. is the mismatch between the complexity of products and services we have created as an industry and our customers’ understanding of that complexity. you have to be decisive and possess a backbone. What would you most like to change? The hardest part of my career is changing positions. Just coordinating your activities with all of these different regulatory bodies takes a lot of time and expertise. I don’t want there to be any surprises in terms of the time I need to spend at work. they’ll take their vacation. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. I make sure I take every one of my vacation days. effective executive? There are many. relationships change and that’s always difficult. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? The biggest surprise. Second.

different settings. credit.com Inc. what would your dream career be now? Since we’re talking about dreaming. Have you ever been mentored. As you get into different meetings. payment systems. I have been mentored and found it very valuable.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals PNC Financial Services Group. While you do not need to be an expert in everything. or mentored others? Absolutely.EDU) 112 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. I’d love to be a professional baseball player. If you were not in the field. Inc. expertise in diverse areas: capital markets.CMU. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? I was in health care consulting with one of the big firms before banking. for example. you do need a solid foundation concerning the fundamentals. but that’s also a little limiting. look out for a person with whom you get along. How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? The easiest thing to do is to look at your boss as a potential mentor. and I am currently mentoring several people. if I could be a Dodger that would be great! Any predictions about the future of the industry? The one thing that has been very clear in my 24 years at PNC is that the industry is continually changing and that we better be ready for a lot more change. For people who are starting their careers in banking and financial services today. . Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. While it was a rewarding career. I really wanted to get into a company where I was involved in the implementation and management of solutions versus the development of recommendations for someone else to implement and manage. the issues they will be dealing with 10 years from now will be very different. Have a discussion and see if something can develop in terms of a mentorship. Since I grew up in Los Angeles. Serving customers successfully requires this understanding.

PNC Financial Services Group. Chief Administrative Officer.CMU. CAREER LIBRARY 113 .EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. Inc.com/finance for insider firm profiles. message boards. Financial services careers require technical expertise in diverse areas: capital markets. If you choose financial services. Inc. payment systems. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. You should have some fun at work. credit.vault. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. “You need to pick a career that you think you’ll enjoy.” — Tom Whitford. you need to take the time to understand the fundamentals of the financial markets.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals PNC Financial Services Group.

Greene continued to lead several assignments and regions before being promoted to the rank of senior vice president. Greene. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Someone once said. For example. Mr. Greene joined Prudential in 1979 as an agent in Danville. the best development is self-development. so updating the plan kept me focused.Prudential Financial Company of America John W. Agency Distribution President of Agency Distribution John W. Mr. where he was responsible for the sales activity of ten states throughout the midwest and east coast territories. Mr. set high goals and memorialize them in writing. Mr. The Prudential Insurance Company of America based in Newark. and what steps you need to take to get there. Greene serves in Prudential’s domestic Individual Life Insurance Business.EDU) 114 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. Greene is also a member of general agents and managers association. Q&A with John Greene What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? I’ve always believed that the challenge in life isn’t getting what you want. New Jersey. when I first established my own career path. It’s also important to create an aggressive self-development plan. He was recently named to the executive committee of the board of trustees for the American College. and living by that motto has served me well over the years. my ideal job changed.CMU. He is chairman of the board of Pruco Securities. There is great competition in corporate America today. I strongly believe that actively doing this over time was the key to my success. qualifying for Million Dollar Round Table during his first full year as a producer. I took a candid look at my developmental opportunities—meaning the areas where I thought I needed to improve upon to achieve my career objectives. I have been updating my career plan every year and I find it interesting that as my goals changed. Greene is responsible for the national insurance sales organization. I also didn’t wait for the company to develop me. has been a member of The American College Board of Trustees since 2006 and serves on the marketing and certification committees. and a member of National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors. He held various sales positions before being named vice president of regional marketing of the Illinois area in 1988. LLC.com Inc. which consists of some 2. Illinois. That means thinking seriously about what your ideal position looks like.500 agents and financial planners. where you want to be in five to 10 years. It’s important to plan your career path. it’s deciding what you want. My strengths and developmental opportunities changed as well. CLU. agency distribution in 1998. and represents the company’s face-to-face captive distribution system for insurance and investment products. ChFC—President. Mr. Greene holds the chartered life underwriter (CLU) and chartered financial consultant (ChFC) designations. He was promoted to chief field officer in 2000 and appointed to president of agency distribution in 2002. I believe a big differentiator lies in setting goals and defining a career path. . I began by doing an inventory of my skills and abilities.

ethics and values. promote them and watch them grow from year to year under your leadership. They are willing to take personal and career risks to serve the long-term interests of the company and the constituents they serve. They are developed. Common thinking does not create high-performance teams. Early on it’s important to determine whether a leadership role is something you want to pursue. it is acquired through work experience and maturation. I might add. If you do choose a path of leadership. They create environments where people want to participate. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? Developing people and watching them grow under my leadership is very rewarding. An important component of building a strong team is to have ethnic and gender diversity as well as diversity of thought. It is an extremely gratifying experience. mentor them. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. because it’s not for everyone. They’re proud of their results and they work collectively and collaboratively for the good of the team. You have to develop them. It’s very rewarding to recruit people. I think the challenge here is that the marketplace demands nimbleness in order to be competitive. You can’t put a collection of people together in a room and call them a high performing team. Good leaders cannot fully educate themselves in a classroom. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. Major change just doesn’t happen overnight. Through his or her leadership and personal example. developing your own leadership qualities and continuing to study human behavior. I have to be “impatiently patient. Cultural shifts can take decades to develop. Good leaders take people to places they wouldn’t have traveled on their own. My experience proved that actual work experience was the best way to learn how to effectively lead a team.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Prudential Financial Company of America What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? That’s an easy one. and to be able to clarify the key issues in complex situations is a critical attribute of good leaders. Ethical Behavior–Effective executives act with integrity and demonstrate a commitment to company values and principles. they set an exemplary tone at the top. customer needs. I would like to see cultural shifts and trends change more rapidly. message boards. I learned about people! I don’t think the classroom can totally prepare you for understanding human behavior. So while I try to remain patient in changing a culture. shareholders and employees. they want to be part of something big. nurture them and create an environment where they enjoy coming to work and are proud of their individual accomplishments and the accomplishments of the organization as a whole. I also enjoy building high-performance teams. The marketplace can be unforgiving. it can prevent their formation. effective executive? What come to mind in no particular order are quite a few things. Unfortunately. Some people are better served and find more gratification from being an individual contributor.com/finance for insider firm profiles. CAREER LIBRARY 115 . Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. and I enjoy making that happen. they’re quite rare. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www.CMU. It never grows old even with the passing of time. but also to appreciate the realistic pace of change.EDU) Conceptual thinking–Having the ability to think through decisions about a business with its many moving parts. then I would suggest that it begins with learning about developing people. In fact.vault. High-performance teams don’t just happen. Finally. Good leaders excel in these areas and are critical to the success of corporate America and. What would you most like to change? The amount of time it takes to change a culture. it is not realistic. such as customers.” This term reminds me to move fast. Courage–Effective leaders know when the course of action is right based on business judgment. you have to have the patience to appoint the right people.

To be successful in this career. What has surprised you the most about working in the financial services industry? What surprised me 29 years ago and continues to surprise me today is that many financial and insurance protection products that are so needed. you are just simply too busy. Once you make appointments for those important things in your life. In order to understand what that means. this may be the right career for them. For me. 365 days a year. Initiative–It is another important attribute that is required to understand and recognize changes in the marketplace. organization and prioritization. A career as a financial services professional has a compensation structure that allows people to be compensated as much as their talents permit.com Inc. an individual must be self-driven. I run every day. opportunities and problems that occur in the workplace. I’ll do a six-mile run at 2:30 in the morning so I can reach the airport for a 6 a. No one can do it alone. and ultimately my work benefits from it. and to know what customers need and being passionate about filling those needs. we compete with consumer dollars that are often allocated to more tangible commodities. Actively engaging and retaining talented people in essential positions and developing a bench of successors for these positions are absolutely critical. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? Many years ago. Once an individual determines that this is the right career. Seeking Information–Good executives continually seek out information. It’s important to remain focused. I am an avid runner. stay up to date on trends. Building Organizational Capabilities–Lastly. someone once told me that you can’t have it all. It is an incredible career. . I’ve watched many people who were entirely committed to their profession burn out. and sometimes. but these are promises that customers can’t hold or touch or see. I think this requires incredible focus. time blocks for my career and time blocks for me. effective executives build organizational capabilities. Drive for Results–Leaders who have a strong drive for results demonstrate an underlying passion for continuous improvement every day. you can’t cancel them. and because of that. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any special techniques. then it’s time for due diligence in search Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. We sell dreams. and I disagree now. There’s potential for excellent compensation. This is an industry that has done a lot of good for a lot of people and if someone has a desire to make an impact and not just a living. and learn as much as you can from them. it’s important because it’s something I need to do. as absurd as it may sound. are not owned by more people. Someone once told me that if you are too busy to run. I found it’s important to have time blocks—Time blocks for my family. We have people in the insurance and financial services industry that come to work every day with a burning.EDU) 116 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault.CMU.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Prudential Financial Company of America Strategic Leadership–This is needed in order to drive a compelling business vision that does not accept the status quo. highly focused and be able to keep pace with changes in the marketplace. I would suggest interviewing men and women who are presently financial services professionals and who have built their own successful practices. continuous desire to educate and help individuals secure a better financial future. we sell promises for the future. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? I would encourage any young person considering a career as a financial services professional to learn as much as they can about the financial services industry.m. but it is not for everyone. having time to myself and being a solid contributor in my professional life. flight. not a 100-yard dash. I can’t think of many industries that have done more good for more people for a longer amount of time. I disagreed then. I look at a career as a marathon. and all for me is making time for my family. As an example. I aspire to have it all.

but also look externally. dreaming. I had a desire to help others and this industry provides that opportunity. and mobilizing. Find out if it’s a company that will provide training and expertise in the specific area he/she wants to pursue. but in my view that’s a friend and not necessarily a mentor. you have to be able to give back and transition from being the mentee to the mentor. A mentor should be someone who has clear strengths in an area you need to develop.com/finance for insider firm profiles.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Prudential Financial Company of America of the right company. Don’t rely on your boss or your company to develop you. go to co-workers. I have found over the past five to seven years I have spent an incredible amount of time mentoring others and I intend to continue to do so. but several mentors. They talk to you about your growth and development and take you to places that you wouldn’t have gone on your own. then you have a responsibility to mentor other people. I also believe that mentoring is like a relay race.vault.EDU) If you were not in this field. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? I started with Prudential when I was 20 years old. At some point. what would your dream career be now? I started my first management assignment when I was 23 years old. A lot of people say in corporate America that there is a lot of competition vying for advancement. CAREER LIBRARY 117 . it is evaluating a company’s training programs. my priorities have changed. A mentor should at times make you feel a little uncomfortable. It’s about being pro-active. Basically. Good mentors ask tough questions and they challenge you. I was looking for a different life than my father’s. and so that is how I began. I was involved in a family business that was going to transfer to me. and I’ve developed. I’ve had the privilege of taking on new and larger responsibilities. I believe that there will be a point in time when I close this chapter and open a new one. Go to your manager. seek out people in your company who have the attributes that you want to have or that you need to improve upon. I would also suggest that as you develop and are the benefactor of good mentoring. Once you have a good handle on what your dreams are and what you need to do to achieve them. but it was a transfer I was not looking forward to. Try to find a match that is very strong in the areas you want to develop. look internally in the company. I will give back to communities on a full-time basis using the professional skills that I have developed. message boards. or mentored others? I would suggest that anyone who has accomplished anything has been the benefactor of not one. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. I don’t think there are as many qualified competitors as you may have think. If you have a plan. Mentoring relationships are not social occasions. I believe at some point. How can someone find a mentor within his or her company/industry? First.CMU. health and welfare benefits. I would like to apply what I’ve learned about general management and leadership to the nonprofit world. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. and I suggest to my mentees that there may be far less competition than they think. so I didn’t have a long list of things I wanted to do at that point of my life. but I also feel that true mentoring is generally misunderstood. and understanding the advancement opportunities they offer. if you add value and if you are committed to continuous growth. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. salary structure. Have you ever been mentored. I would also encourage examining a company’s value proposition. I’ve had several mentors throughout my career. I have been fortunate in that I have been with one company for 29 years. so I’ve spent most of my 29 years managing people. When I do that. I’ve grown. There are lots of companies in this industry so I suggest an interview with several to determine whether or not the company shares their values. One mentor carried the baton and helped me grow and develop to a point in my career and then handed the baton over to another mentor who helped me reach a higher level of success. People come together and have lunch and enjoy one another’s company and call it a mentoring relationship. Mentoring is extremely important to individuals who want to develop themselves. That has allowed me to develop good management and leadership skills. if you develop yourself. understand your strengths and developmental areas. and I’ve worked with a great company that has allowed me to grow and has grown with me.

and they need experts who can provide sound advice and guidance at arguably the most important time of their lives. to name a few.EDU) 118 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. there is a changing face of the consumer today.CMU. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. I believe qualified financial services professionals are in the best position to help consumers meet their goals and to achieve their hopes and dreams for a financially secure future. First of all. There will be multiple and emerging outlets where they will be able to acquire these products. to help them navigate through the complexity of the products and services that are available to help secure their financial future.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Prudential Financial Company of America Any predictions about the future of the industry? As far as this company goes. These groups need to understand the multitude of products. someone who can make sense out of a mountain of information they need to navigate through. It will be up to them to develop strategies to help grow and protect their wealth. The number of women and people of color that can benefit from the products and services we offer are continually increasing. the future is as bright as its incredible past. Having said that. . there is a need for financial services professionals in a market where one generation’s wealth will transfer to another. such as worksite marketing and the Internet. I continue to believe that most people will seek out a trusted advisor whom they feel comfortable with. and someone who will help them make some of the most important decisions of their life.com Inc. Consumers will likely want to establish an ongoing relationship with a knowledgeable professional they can trust. For the financial services industry. I believe the provider of choice will be the financial services professional. Our company plans to continue to provide a career path that meets these multicultural and gender opportunities that are developing. Equally important as we go forward is that consumers and employees are going to be asked to “be their own rock.” They will have portable cash balance savings plans and they’re more likely to have multiple employers. and where an aging population is nearing retirement and must plan for the distribution of their assets.

message boards. President of Agency Distribution in Prudential’s Domestic Individual Life Insurance Business. In fact. You can’t put a collection of people together in a room and call them a performing team.” — John Greene.vault. CAREER LIBRARY 119 . it can prevent their formation. They are developed. You have to develop them and common thinking does not create highperformance teams.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Prudential Insurance Company of America “High-performance teams don’t just happen.CMU.com/finance for insider firm profiles. The Prudential Insurance Company of America Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.

Inc. as well as of numerous subsidiaries throughout the organization. I started out in the financial services industry as a financial advisor—learning about the business by doing the business. I have never lost sight of those important lessons learned by doing. he serves as a director of Raymond James Financial. Helck began his association with Raymond James in 1989 as a vice president of business development for its independent contractor subsidiary. and built a successful retail office. Helck entered the financial services industry in 1983 as an investment representative for Edward D. Helck received his BA from the West Virginia University Institute of Technology and is a graduate of the Securities Industry Institute at the Wharton School of Business and of the Harvard Business School Leading Professional Service Firms Program. marketing and corporate communications. He became president and chief operating officer of Raymond James Financial in February of 2002. He is chairman of the Raymond James Technology Advisory Group. Helck serves as a board and executive committee member of the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association. legal. human resources. Additionally. Mr. he served for nine years as a product marketing and territory manager for Deere & Co. . Q&A with Chet Helck Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Prior to working in the securities industry. Increasing responsibilities led to his appointment as executive vice president of business development.Raymond James Financial. I learned our business from the customer level. wealth management. Even though I had an eye towards management. Mr. in addition to representing the firm in activities related to public company status such as engaging institutional investors and working with analysts covering Raymond James. Mr. 120 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault.CMU. with widows and with young professionals helping them with financial planning. where he shaped an environment of success that contributed significantly to remarkable growth in the firm’s independent contractor business. He oversees its domestic broker/dealer subsidiaries. and Londonbased Raymond James Investment Services. directing and coordinating the company’s technology efforts. which turned out to be life planning. He later became the firm’s regional leader for Georgia.com Inc. I sat with retirees. Mr. Helck’s leadership responsibilities further include risk management. Florida and Alabama. which is charged with planning. together with Canadian subsidiary Raymond James Ltd. Raymond James & Associates and Raymond James Financial Services.EDU) What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? You have to really know the business you are in. Chet Helck—President & Chief Operating Officer President and Chief Operating Officer Chet Helck works with the CEO and other senior management in formulating and directing strategic initiatives for Raymond James Financial. Jones & Co. and as chairman of its Private Client Group Steering Committee. Mr.

You have to know something about what you are doing. Years later I joined Raymond James.vault. “Sign me up. who say they want to “play a strategic role with P&L responsibility” that they really don’t know squat about our business and they had better go learn it first. message boards. By then I was able to demonstrate knowledge of the business from experience and an aptitude and a passion for management. creating multimedia expressions of the capabilities that had been designed into the products. after I had been working and successful for a while. they hired the son of a John Deere dealer who obviously knew a lot more about the product than me. not doing things yourself.” I wrote down: technical design. but it’s also about contributing to the efficacy of how the organization meets its objectives. photography (a friend had just bought a camera I thought was cool). with a subsidiary company based in Atlanta. I would also have learned another language. industrial management (my degree). Though it took a while for him to say no again. “Take a notebook with you wherever you go for two weeks.com/finance for insider firm profiles. Earlier. To be relevant. but I interviewed for the job.” So. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. when I was a senior in college. not just academically. The HR manager was calling back to invite me to become the first “trainee” in a new management development program. and to really learn you usually have to start with the basics. One of the toughest things managers have to learn is letting go and getting others to do something. Management means getting things done through other people. while I did some of the work for an MBA I took the classes too late.CMU. you can be good at it. What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? Make sure you identify what you can be passionate about and transpose those things into a job. in being told no. Inc. and I couldn’t relate well to the academicians who talked down to the students. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? Feeling that I can really make things happen has been my biggest reward. If you are passionate about something. Write down words that reflect the things you enjoy. and to create sales and marketing materials to help sell those products in the marketplace. hopefully even better than you. and you have to know a business experientially. After two weeks look at those words and write a job description that includes those things and then see what kind of job you should seek based on the things you enjoy. I wasn’t sure I knew how to properly pronounce combine or Moline. It’s rewarding to develop people. I didn’t get it. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. you have to get it in your blood. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Being good at it is the key to success.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Raymond James Financial. delegating.EDU) What would you most like to change? I probably would have gotten an MBA . he did let me down gently. music (I was in a band) and public speaking (I felt pretty comfortable in that role). But about an hour later the phone rang. a professor gave us some very good advice about choosing a career. taking new product designs off the drawing board.” Surprisingly. I said. in terms of both developing people and affecting financial results. He said. I often tell some of these incredibly bright young people who come through our management training program. But. persistence helps. You have to get your hands dirty. So my ideal job was to “work with technical people in a company. travel (I had been on an airplane once). I attempted to persuade the HR manager that he should call his counterpart in the lawn mower division (because I really knew a lot about lawn mowers having mowed yards since I was a boy) and to get them to hire me in for the same type job in their area. CAREER LIBRARY 121 . one company had this job—it was the combine-harvester division of John Deere in Moline. to be able to make a contribution and have it mean something. Illinois.

Be reliable. We get surprised along with everyone else. you will outperform others. It’s those fundamental little things that create the relationship of trust. I have been mentored. Attitude is the most important factor to success. the negative ones. But I would advise students to really learn. You see talking heads on TV. We cannot see the future. It’s the little things. in financial planning terms. you will have to make sacrifices with both family and work. I know there are students who can get good grades without really learning anything. “I’ll call you tomorrow”—and you don’t. There’s a small group who outperforms.CMU. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. I don’t have any particular system but I try to be a part of what’s going on. Having to be away when important things happen is hard. No one will lose confidence in someone more quickly than having them not do what they say they are going to do. it’s a myth. that will make or break a career. You must not lose sight of the fact that these conflicts exist. who know their stuff and who are thinking of the possibilities. My mother always said. or mentored others? How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? Yes. They have about them an air of credibility that they really do know the future. Managing your attitude is incredibly important but it is hard—it’s much harder than doing your homework. Tell the truth and the whole truth. absorbing the knowledge is important.EDU) Have you ever been mentored. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? One’s work life affects everything—and family is the most affected. It’s not just the big things that can ruin you. developing relationships with colleagues all make for competition with your family. “I’ll get you an answer”—and you don’t. over time. especially with young people in business. and the other bigger group who are the complainers. Traveling is hard on a family and many successful careers involve a fair amount of travel. but also have a backup plan. Study those who are good at what they do. but if you maintain a healthy family life and a healthy attitude. I did spend time with my son when he was a boy scout and went on field trips and camping weekends. but I will always be able to benefit from more mentoring. Working long hours. Demonstrate humility. My advice is to hang out with the positive group. Do what you say you are going to do. and if your family is supportive and understanding. Inc.” What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any special techniques. you need to be able to diversify and manage risk and in financial management terms you need to have a solid business plan and a commitment to it.com Inc. Take the educational process seriously. executives quoted in the newspaper all making predictions about what is going to happen. “I’ll have that report to you on Monday”—and you don’t. Well. Emulate winners.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Raymond James Financial. The negative people are rationalizing their own underperformance and blaming someone else. 122 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. or lack of it. Yes. So. they can score well using their intelligence. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. but it was important. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? The perception others have about our industry. and I knowingly gave up some business to accomplish that. There seems to be an assumption that people in the financial services industry can predict the future. where there are two groups. effective executive? Have integrity. assuming you have the fundamentals and the basic attributes. but we have to have a plan in place to deal with a broad range of possible outcomes. There’s a practice you’ll often find in business. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? Learn from the ground up. “Remember where you came from. . that’s not a license to take them for granted.

Any predictions about the future of the industry? The financial services industry has a very bright future. I look for those who are engaged. I try to mentor the people who demonstrate the most ability to contribute.com/finance for insider firm profiles. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? If you were not in the field. meet. Raymond James plans on being at the forefront of this growth. and are willing to commit to you that they are on board helping you achieve your objectives. message boards. I have my dream job right now.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. Beyond that. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Maybe years from now I will take my boat to the Bahamas for three months and go diving. is already—huge. indeed in the world. and as people in emerging markets become consumers of financial services we will export our business knowledge to those markets. A lesson to learn is that the young aspiring person must reach out to the mentor. etc.CMU. would tell you that the demand for our services from the baby boom generation is going to be—in fact. Take the first step. Inc. The demographics in our country. I want to continue in this role so long as I can make a relevant contribution. CAREER LIBRARY 123 . have the best attitude.vault.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Raymond James Financial. what would your dream career be now? I think seeing my fingerprints all over something that really matters is wonderful. there’s a developing middle class in parts of the globe where there was not one before. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. Ask to go to lunch.

office properties. the Urban Land Institute. Additionally. whether I was in school or later at work. Q&A with Joyce Price What are some steps that you took to get in the position you are in now? I was always determined to do my personal best. the Maryland Society of Certified Public Accountants. multifaceted real estate projects. Once you’re on the job. homebuilders and large.C. I always wanted to deliver something that would make me proud and my expectations of myself are pretty high. . homebuilding and hospitality industries for more than twenty years. I am responsible for managing a group of professionals who provide audit. Joyce S. She has been providing professional services in the commercial real estate. having and reflecting a strong work ethic and recognizing the importance of collaboration have been fundamental to my success. A cohesive team will naturally build rewarding relationships with clients. As a result. the whole team is more likely to be successful in achieving both the individual and group goals. Relentless preparation. cum laude from the University of Maryland. Each business transaction has distinct elements. She currently divides her time between Bethesda. learning 124 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. land developers. consulting and tax services.com Inc. I learned early to stay very focused on providing great service—to my team and to my clients.Reznick Group. Baltimore and Los Angeles. Over the course of her career. Ms. I wouldn’t be where I am today if I hadn’t been dedicated. my partners and my clients is vital. strengths and what truly motivates them is an important part of building a successful group. Recognizing the value of a team is more vital than any one contributor. I have learned that effective communication with my staff. Price has been involved in over $100 billion in real estate transactions including hotels and resort properties. Ms. Understanding. you continue to expand your technical knowledge and learn when and how to apply this knowledge. regional shopping malls. She has overall responsibility for the financial due diligence services for one of the largest consumer and commercial lending companies in the country and is the lead principal for many of Reznick Group’s largest real estate clients. In my current position. focused and prepared and had good people to work with and to work for. listening and recognizing each person’s goals. Price received her BS in accounting. P. Ms. private equity funds. Price.CMU. Price’s professional affiliations include the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. the National Council of Real Estate Investment Fiduciaries (NCREIF) and the Pension Real Estate Association (PREA). In school you are taught the technical skills that serve as the foundation for your career. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.EDU) What are some things you feel you’ve learned on the job and not in the classroom? I have learned the importance of fostering solid relationships. Developing strong relationships with my team is essential. CPA—Audit Principal Joyce Price is a Principal in Reznick Group’s real estate consulting and audit practice. and has extensive experience servicing the audit and accounting needs for some of the largest real estate investors nationwide.

Third. Developing exceptional technical skills. will always be the most successful executives in any business. Watching them progress from the day they came through our door with uncertainty and tentativeness to becoming selfsufficient. you need to really care for the people with whom you work. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. P. learning how to listen to the answers. how women could and should interact with one another in their chosen profession. Most of all—I have learned that integrity is paramount to everything we do. confident professionals is extremely rewarding. Reznick Group accommodates flexible schedules and adopts a results-oriented focus. There haven't been many role models to demonstrate how to juggle all the demands of work and home life.EDU) What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? My generation is among the first for women to enter the workforce in earnest. To win at this—learning to communicate effectively and consistently has been critical. When you’re in public accounting. dynamic and unpredictable. it is certainly about giving back by mentoring. to understand the economics of the transaction. People who are creative and lead the way with bold new ideas and strategies.com/finance for insider firm profiles. You have to be capable of making adjustments to every situation you encounter and you absolutely must be able to cope and manage through constant change. Public accounting is an amazing arena to grow a career that can move in a multitude of directions— all while remaining in public accounting. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.CMU. foster and sustain relationships. message boards. developing and enhancing your business acumen are achieved throughout your career. the objectives and goals of the transaction and the risks and rewards for each party involved is essential. I’ve enjoyed sharing my knowledge and experience to help develop those successful careers and have learned more than a few things from my staff along the way.vault. If there were any one thing that I could change—it would be the perception that public accounting is a great place to launch a career but then transition into industry. Sixth. My son is in his sophomore year at Emory and Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. In addition to learning how to build. you should be passionate about your work and love what you do. you know very early on whether your personality is suited to the field. constant preparation and the ability to anticipate issues are essential. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. Each day brings new challenges. new opportunities and new ideas. Public accounting provides opportunities for continually expanding your knowledge and developing management skills. It is not the type of position where you come to work each morning and know exactly what you’re going to be working on. Second. you have to set goals and objectives. understanding the issues involved and the decisions made in structuring a transaction. My “on-the-job” experiences have taught me that to be truly successful—you have to be agile in your thinking and your approach to clients and staff. I’ve worked with some individuals for over 10 years. coaching and developing people. On-the-job training includes learning what questions to ask. The flexibility I have been afforded at work has been essential in managing my career and raising my children with my husband.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Reznick Group. Fifth.C. Both staff and clients must have trust in my judgment and know that they can depend on me do to what is “right” and reasonable even if it is not uniquely popular. mastering the art of consulting. and have the ability to actually implement them. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? At this point. regardless of what field they’re in. be optimistic and innovative and establish yourself as a visionary leader. CAREER LIBRARY 125 . Acquiring. Fourth. I have also learned to adapt. You must be proactive versus reactive. What would you most like to change? I love my career and public accounting. you need to be an effective communicator. develop an entrepreneurial spirit. effective executive? To be an effective executive. Knowing you’ve had a positive influence on people both in their personal lives and in their careers is one of the most rewarding aspect of any person’s life. and furthermore. the exceptional leadership opportunities that abound coupled with the ability to provide exceptional client service are not readily found anywhere other then public accounting. Public accounting is very fast-paced. learning how to creatively resolve issues and learning to think outside of the box.

What has surprised you most about working in the accounting industry? The constant change. 126 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. The quantity of accounting rules and financial pronouncements issued has increased tremendously during the past five years. My daughter is a senior in high school and will be entering college next year. There have been times where certain family events have been missed and times when certain business events have been missed. But I would hope that in looking at the whole picture. A good mentor will give you feedback even when you’re doing great. Balancing the pace of change with training and implementation continues to be a challenge. Other examples might include utilizing valuation specialists as well as state. go with the flow. Many transactions today are completed entirely using information technology so information technology specialists are added on the audit team to gain an understanding of a client’s electronic data interchange and to test its output. How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? I know that some companies adopt formal mentoring programs but in addition. This is a challenging and ever changing environment so it is important to have a passion to succeed and a hunger for knowledge. They should observe the successful people within their organization. I have always worked throughout my children’s lives and have dealt through the common work/life balance issues. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. I’ve been mentored throughout my life. You just need to be flexible. learn from their decisions. . Have you ever been mentored or mentored others? Yes. I think it should also be up to the individual to seek out their own mentor. I was mentored in college by my professors who gave me advice on what field to pursue. in an environment of constant praise you will only stagnate.CMU. sometimes even on a daily basis. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in accounting? Choose something that you’re passionate about. federal and international tax professionals on a particular engagement. In addition. soon will be applying to the business school. Feedback is not always an easy thing to hear.com Inc. and not expect perfection from yourself all of the time. I have demonstrated to my children that you can really have both a career and a happy family so long as the communication is open and compromises can be made. I’ve also been mentored at work. and it’s from my professors that I chose public accounting as my career. There have been significant changes to the accounting profession throughout my career. P. but you can’t improve without it. My partners at Reznick Group have inspired me to advance beyond what I thought was possible. identify their attributes and try to determine what makes them successful. it included life skills that I continue to apply today. I was mentored as a child by my parents. You don’t want to chose a mentor who will only pat you on the back and tell you that you’ve done a good job.EDU) An individual should also take the initiative to ask for feedback. the need to integrate specialists onto the audit team has increased significantly.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Reznick Group. You want the constructive criticism so that you can continue to improve and develop.C. Do you have any special techniques or philosophies that help you maintain your work balance? It’s about knowing your priorities. Emulate the positive traits you see in these individuals. Inspiring others to do their personal best and ensuring that each person sees that they can and do make a difference is important to me. I coach our employees on a daily basis as I love to teach. My father used to say that people like what they are good at and they are good at what they like. The coaching I received went beyond technical skills.

I interned with a public accounting firm and experienced the energy. the enthusiasm and the intellectual challenges of “tax season. with increasingly more requirements and more oversight. In addition. and will continue to be a focus to align the generally accepted accounting principals that exist for various nations to a set of standards that will be adhered to on an international basis. the Financial Accounting Standards Board has issued several pronouncements which require components of the financial statements to be reported on a fair market value basis. I really enjoyed the course work and did well. P. There is. Financial statements have. up to now. message boards.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Reznick Group. During recent years.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on accounting? I originally intended to be a stockbroker and chose finance as my major at the University of Maryland. Any predictions about the future of the industry? The industry is going to continue to become more sophisticated.C.vault.CMU. been generally reported on a historical cost basis. CAREER LIBRARY 127 .com/finance for insider firm profiles.” This experience sealed my decision and I changed my major from finance to accounting. as the economy has become more global. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. This trend started with just investments but has now reached a significant number of other financial statement components that will touch and affect all aspects of the financial statements. our financial reporting must keep pace. If you were not in accounting. During the spring semester of my junior year. But when I took my first accounting class. what would your dream career be now? I would probably choose something involving the travel industry as I love to travel. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.

EDU) What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? You need to have both technical skills and experience. Mr. and that’s not the way to succeed. Then you need to be observant of other successful people and what makes them tick. After three years. Q&A with Steven Kass What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? The most important step in moving ahead in business or your career is to build a strong foundation and knowledge base.com Inc. and he frequently lectures before industry groups and professional associations. and if you can show that you have the skills and experience to meet the responsibilities of the position— and this includes understanding and skills related to technical. Mr. Additionally. He was honored in January 2004 with a Distinguished Achievement award by the banking and finance unit of B’nai B’rith International. Mr. Kass received his BS in accounting from Syracuse University.CMU. Mr. most importantly. You cannot be afraid to make a decision. Kass began his career with Arthur Young (now Ernst & Young). You need to have a keen awareness of circumstances around you—what are the dynamics of the situation..Rothstein Kass Steven A. people and client responsibilities—then you have a much better chance of succeeding. Bringing strong skills and a fresh mindset to the firm. . and I learned from that process. New York. You need to have a broad understanding of your clients’ needs and the services you are providing. Kass—Co-Managing Principal Co-Managing Principal Steven Kass has served at Rothstein Kass for the past 21 years. organizational. He is certified to practice in the states of New Jersey. an association of separate and independent accounting and consulting firms in 80 countries. Pennsylvania and Florida. with experience. I would add that. what is influencing the outcome and you need to learn to trust your instincts. he joined Rothstein Kass. to succeed you need to take ownership of your career and not wait for things to be presented to you. For me. He is also a member of the firm’s board of directors he has extensive experience promoting audit. one of the things that helped me a lot in my success is that I paid attention to other individuals. Kass serves on the advisory board for the Lubin School of Accounting at Syracuse University and recently completed a two-year term as international chairman of AGN International Ltd. Mr. and you need a range of skills and experience that you can develop only in the field. tax and advisory services to a wide range of public and private businesses and their owners. he has been extensively involved with advising clients within the firm’s financial services group. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. in part. I saw what they did and what worked for them. You have to learn how to motivate and lead—and that understanding and those skills come. Kass has played an integral role in the firm’s growth and national presence over the last 21 years. Kass is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. Too often people sit back and wait for things to happen. The classroom does give you a 128 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. the New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants and the New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants. You have to understand what is required in the position to which you aspire.

I am far from the best role model. CAREER LIBRARY 129 . Seeing people achieve and benefit from the growth of our organization is really one of the most satisfying and gratifying aspects of my current position. Being charismatic is good. What has surprised you the most about working in the accounting industry? I’ve always understood accounting to be a dynamic profession.vault. A good leader needs to be able to motivate people. the type-A personalities that we are. flexible. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Balancing your career and family life is always a challenge to highly motivated people. new services. The profession has gone through tremendous growth have and I always understood and even expected change. not make it any more complicated. but the remarkable evolution in the profession exceeded my expectations. If you think about the accounting industry. especially a technical foundation. Charisma doesn’t hurt either. He or she needs to see the big picture and have a good sense of where the firm needs to go. effective executive? A good leader needs to have vision. and it can also create opportunities. although there are times that I can certainly be better at it. And. you need to be nimble when you see change around you. the easier it is to control my life. but I want to make sure we can adapt quickly to or in advance of any significant changes.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Rothstein Kass foundation. both the individuals and firm succeed. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? I think it’s simply a matter of keeping work/life balance a priority.EDU) Another technique is that I only have one calendar for work and home. in particular. for that matter. but at the end of the day you need to develop leadership and people skills. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www.CMU. and my most effective technique is literally to schedule my family time. and you make sure you do take the time needed to take care of obligations and interests. message boards. I literally do schedule my family time. and we practice this concept at all levels of the firm. What surprised me the most is the dynamic effect Arthur Andersen imploding and Sarbanes-Oxley being created had on the profession. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. As far as the profession goes. Actually. And there are mutual benefits when the resources are developed and focused properly. and you need to know when to trust your instincts. I don’t go for multiple email addresses. and they created new requirements. new ways we can help our clients. I put it in my calendar. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? The most important thing for a professional services firm is its human capital. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. and it is something I do work hard to improve upon. Change can be unsettling. Sometimes you need to have the flexibility to schedule your leave to deal with family-related issues. We try not to interrupt anyone’s scheduled time off with work issues. a good leader needs to make sure he or she is surrounded by good people who can become good leaders. Do you have any special techniques. I am not sure I know what I would like to change. you never could have anticipated the collapse of Arthur Andersen and the subsequent implementation of Sarbanes-Oxley legislation. adaptable and observant. Those events really changed the landscape of the accounting profession. That way it stays a priority. What would you most like to change? I feel pretty blessed with my career so there’s not a lot that I’d like to change. He or she needs to be nimble. The more I combine my databases and have all information in one central place. I try to simplify my life. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. it’s a firm philosophy to “disengage” during time off. you cannot really build the strong reputation that you need in order to be successful. I have one email address also. You need to schedule your family time as if it’s your most important client.com/finance for insider firm profiles. because both work and family are important and deserve appropriate attention. Without having talented and highly motivated people.

I would advise a person embarking on a career in accounting to take it seriously. People always need mentor regardless of where they are in their career.CMU. You want to deal with someone who feels comfortable with you in terms of his or her personality traits as well as their skills sets. . There are always going to be new economic cycles. You need to aggressively go for it. My father. and there’s going to be continued globalization of the profession. because you will want to have open conversations and discussions. and it’s something that we should do. Another may advise you on how to approach very specific situations or client issues. Any predictions about the future of the industry? It’s going to continue to evolve. it was the right decision. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in accounting? I thought about a career in finance.EDU) 130 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. I have spent a lot of time mentoring and coaching individuals who are leaders today. I think mentoring is a responsibility. And. You need to be observant of different traits of the individuals and identify those individuals with whom you are most likely to have similar thoughts and approaches. because hopefully one never wants to stop learning and developing. You want to find mentors or coaches with whom you will have a certain comfort level. There will probably be continued consolidation of accounting firms. There’s always going to be new services and products. Take ownership of it. you look for people who you feel demonstrate the attributes of future leader—you have a sense that it’s worth investing in these individuals because the investment will have a significant return—and who you personally want to help through the development process.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Rothstein Kass What advice would you give a young person considering a career in accounting? Accounting is a great career. How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? You will probably have several mentors. as opposed to waiting for it to get to you and waiting for someone to acknowledge you. with navigating firm culture. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Have you ever been mentored. I like to think I am helping others as I was helped to develop professionally and personally throughout my career. I have had a number of people who have guided me and offered me advice. and to put yourself in a position where you’ve earned the position—and shown proven yourself in the position—that you’re looking to achieve the needed expertise or experience for the next position. you are responsible for developing and implementing your career plan. as I reflect on it today. Accounting has been great. was a great role model and mentor to me. People who are the recipients of it have a better chance in excelling faster in their career. I did consider a Wall Street career. Don’t wait for things to come to you. you want to seek someone out who can help you provide those intangibles to make you more successful. who was also an accountant. Accounting felt more comfortable to me and. There were several others. I would tell a young person that you need to embrace your career. And I continue to mentor professionals who hope to be leaders tomorrow in all aspects of the business. As a mentor.com Inc. If you’re a mentee. each providing you with a different perspective and perhaps advising you in a different aspect of career development. It’s a career with a great upside. As a mentor you should identify your future leaders and put each of them into a position to succeed. don’t treat it like a job. or mentored others? Yes. One may help with technical skills development. another. In any career you need a vision of where you want to go and how you will get there. The standards on international levels are likely to converge. while some people will help you along the way. In my capacity as co-managing principal of Rothstein Kass. both.

don’t treat it like a job. CAREER LIBRARY 131 . Rothstein Kass Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. You need to aggressively go for it. message boards.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. Take ownership of it. Co-Managing Principal.com/finance for insider firm profiles.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Rothstein Kass “Embrace your career.CMU.vault. Don’t wait for things to come to you.” — Steven Kass.

RSM EquiCo, Inc.
Hector J. Cuellar—President, RSM EquiCo; RSM EquiCo Capital Markets
President Hector J. Cuellar has more than 20 years of experience in corporate and investment banking, including international M&A, corporate finance and capital raising. The firm has added several new practice areas, revamped its business-development strategy, tripled its average deal size, almost doubled its number of cross-border transactions, and generated billions of dollars in liquidity for its clients. Prior to joining RSM EquiCo, Mr. Cuellar served at Banc of America Securities, the full-service investment bank and brokerage subsidiary of Bank of America Corporation, as managing director and manager of the firm's Los Angeles office. In this role, he oversaw the firm's global activities in the aerospace/defense and engineering/construction industries and advised some of the nation’s most prominent companies, including Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, CBI, General Dynamics, Kiewit, Goodrich, Boeing, Bechtel and Fluor. Mr. Cuellar joined Bank of America in 1980 as an international finance officer and associate vice president in the bank's Mexico City office, where he handled corporate and government sector clients. Mr. Cuellar later transferred to the company's Chicago corporate office, where he served general industrial clients and subsequently was promoted to managing director, providing corporate and investment banking services to a variety of multinational corporations. Mr. Cuellar is a director of the Mexican-American Legal and Educational Defense Fund (MALDEF) and previously served as president of the California Pacific Chapter of the United States-Mexico Chamber of Commerce and member of the U.S. Space Council. In 2004, he was named one of the nation’s 100 Most Influential Hispanics by Hispanic Business Magazine, and in 2007 he was listed as one of the Top 25 Latinos in Finance by Latino Leaders magazine. Mr. Cuellar received his BA in accounting from Loyola University in Chicago and an MBA from Northwestern University’s J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management. He holds FINRA Series 7, 24 and 63 securities licenses.

Q&A with Hector Cuellar
Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.CMU.EDU)

What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now?
I benefited from having fairly broad exposure within the field of finance, which gave me some valuable perspective, especially compared with people who narrowly specialize. I spent many years working in the global corporate bank for Bank of America and within Banc of America Securities and thus held a variety of positions, both in the United States and abroad. So I gained a fairly international perspective early on, without losing my appreciation for the idiosyncrasies of local, regional and national markets. Experiencing the evolution of Bank of America’s investment banking practice first hand also taught me some valuable lessons. I learned that having expertise in finance and investment banking products are not enough if you want to get to the top of this field; you also need

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to develop an in-depth understanding of relationships as well as of a particular industry. Knowing a lot about aerospace and defense has been hugely beneficial to me. Developing relationships with some of the major industry players has been even more valuable.

What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom?
Lessons can be learned in a lot places outside the classroom: at home, in the office, on the street. In this business, an absolutely essential attribute is trust, and there are no shortcuts to gaining it; you must earn it, patiently. That can’t be learned in a class. The art of negotiation, which at its core is what deal-making is, is not a book-learned talent. Client management is another crucial skill that has to be learned on the job. Of course, the need to constantly stay abreast of industry trends requires lifelong learning.

What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? What would you most like to change?
I have found this to be an extraordinarily exciting career, one that has helped me grow as a person both on and off the job. Investment banking in particular has given me a very broad perspective, a global point of view, which I think has made me more sensitive to cultural differences. That’s useful in an increasingly interconnected and interdependent world. I’ve also had a chance to work with some really bright people, not only colleagues and clients, but other advisors such as lawyers, private equity investors and tax specialists. There is not much I would change. I suppose I might have left Banc of America Securities a little earlier.

What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good, effective executive?
In this business, a strong work ethic is an absolute prerequisite. If you’re not willing to work hard, you’re not likely to succeed. You also should have good analytical and financial modeling skills, as well as a solid grasp of accounting, corporate finance and business valuation. This is a demanding field, and you’re often juggling multiple assignments, so time management skills are essential. If you want to move up the executive ranks, you also must learn to be a decision-maker and an effective manager of people. Leadership requires a well-honed sense of fairness. A leader must be willing to walk the walk and not ask people to do anything he or she is unwilling to do. He or she should serve as an example to others.

What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any special techniques, methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional?
To be candid, my not-inconsiderable ambitions have put pressure on my family and created challenges in my personal life. Investment banking can be lucrative career, but it can also be extremely demanding. There is a lot of travel, a lot of stress. It’s also incredibly stimulating and at times even exhilarating. I’m still learning to manage and improve the balance in my life. One thing that’s definitely helped: bringing my wife with me when I travel abroad. I also strongly urge people to take advantage of their time off. Don’t skip vacations.
Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.CMU.EDU)

What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry?
I’m surprised at how much fun this business has turned out to be. I’m also somewhat surprised, and definitely pleased, by how well this field aligns with my personality, interests and passions. There is no boredom in this arena. Deregulation and globalization have helped stimulate rapid evolution, and nowadays banking requires long hours and involves considerable risk. At the same time, the upside potential is better than ever.

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What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance?
Do your best to determine your desired end game; that is, decide where you want to end up in your career. Then do your homework to assess the skills, experience and attributes you’ll need to get there. Develop the requisite technical abilities, and then steadily add other skills that will help you achieve your long-term goals. Develop and maintain relationships. Don’t compromise your integrity; develop a reputation as a straight shooter with high ethics. Finally, take responsibility for managing your own career. Don’t count on a company or institution to do it for you.

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the Vault Finance Job Board and more. CAREER LIBRARY 135 . Inc. Inc.” — Hector J.vault. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Cuellar. President. “Take responsibility for managing your own career.CMU.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. message boards. Don’t count on a company or institution to do it for you.com/finance for insider firm profiles.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals RSM EquiCo. RSM EquiCo.

Gennaro J. the Construction Financial Management Association. Mr. managing federal and state tax examinations. What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? I attended Duquesne University. Mr. not just in the college classroom. Mr. Technology was not as prevalent back then. DiBello received his BS in business administration from Duquesne University. I just celebrated my 20 anniversary with the firm.com Inc.CMU. DiBello joined Schneider Downs in 1987. and became a shareholder in 1998. the Constructors Association of Western Pennsylvania. communicating and implementing tax minimization strategies. real estate. Mr. DiBello also serves clients in construction. He currently serves as a tax advisory services shareholder. I’d certainly encourage people to continue to learn. He also coaches youth sports for Our Lady of Grace School and the Scott Township Athletic Association. the Master Builders Association. of the Club at Nevillewood Finance Committee. He also excels in developing. but through practical experience and continuing education. and overall entity and individual tax planning. it was all done manually. DiBello has widespread experience in all areas of tax and business planning associated with closely held companies and delivers services to the firm’s clients on a variety of tax and business planning matters that include the coordination and delivery of tax compliance services to closely held businesses and their owners. Mr.EDU) Was Schneider Downs your first job? No.Schneider Downs & Co. Perseverance has been a key essential ingredient in arriving at this success.. He is also a member of the Young Presidents Organization. Q&A with Gennaro DiBello What are some steps that you took to get in the position that you are in now? I’ve actually been very fortunate to have an opportunity to work my way through Schneider Downs. I am currently a member of our firm’s board of directors. Pittsburgh Chapter. I learned a lot in a small environment. DiBello—Shareholder Shareholder Gennaro J. The handson experience that I received at the two smaller firms was absolutely wonderful. . of the Schneider Downs Board of Directors and of the Schneider Downs Engineering. Construction and Real Estate Industry Group. th Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. DiBello is a member of the American and Pennsylvania Institutes of Certified Public Accountants and the Maryland Association of Certified Public Accountants. but I have spent my entire career in public accounting. I got here as an entry level accountant and I’ve made my way through several levels of management. Inc. manufacturing. and the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties. The education was great. professional services and automobile industries. I was with two smaller firms before I joined Schneider Downs. the classroom is 136 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. I learned about the profession and became enthused about public accounting. The education was critical as it was a foundational stepping stone for my career. I’ve learned by doing. DiBello also is a member of the Board of Trustees with La Roche College.

com/finance for insider firm profiles. message boards. People skills are very. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. very critical in our business. The development of relationships with clients and with the business community is very important. effective executive leader? I think an effective leader is someone who is absolutely comfortable with taking responsibility and being held accountable.” I remind myself of that everyday. fast and often. I’ve got a quote on my desk from Vince Lombardi—“Leaders are not born. Inc. It’s not just about numbers. Part of the work/life balance is being able to achieve and enjoy. Along those lines. It’s never perfect. You need to be able to react to the needs of business.CMU. you must have good critical. Day to day it’s a whole new set of issues. written and verbal communication skills. to find time to pursue those interests is challenging during busy season.. it is the work compression during the January-April time frame. As I mentioned.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Schneider Downs & Co. It is essential that to work in our industry. my clients and the business community. I’ve grown up with this organization and I’m very proud of the achievements that I’ve been part of through my involvement on the client service side and with our governance helping to lead the firm into the future. they are made through effort and hard work. which can cause a lot of stress both on the family and the professional fronts. CAREER LIBRARY 137 . we have the work compression in the January to April time frame and that certainly gets to be one sided. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. It’s also cultivating and growing relationships with my colleagues.vault. and then ultimately trusts them. you need to have the ability to change gears. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. You also need to have excellent interpersonal skills. In order to be effective. Along with excellent interpersonal skills you need to be a good communicator. the workplace is very practical. at the end of the day it’s up to me to keep and maintain that balance. It’s about continuous relationship building. I’m also blessed that our organization recognizes the importance of work/life balance. empowers them. We are recognized as a top 50 accounting firm (No. I try to find time to enjoy with the family. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? What would you most like to change? There are actually a few. If there was something in particular. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any special techniques. very theoretical. There are no two days alike in a finance professional’s life. I enjoy marketing the firm and new business development and. It’s never easy to achieve that balance. but it’s very important in a professional’s life. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. Our culture has been wonderful here. quite honestly. and I’m very proud to be a part of this organization. Some of my family members think that I sit all day at an adding machine and that’s certainly not what I do on a day to day basis. An effective leader also develops the younger talent. Communication skills are key. I don’t know that I would change much. Without question. whether it is a vacation or just time away from the office. I wish there was a way we could spread the workload compression. It has been incredibly rewarding here to be part of a management team that has helped our firm reach unprecedented levels of growth. I’ve made very close friends here and there’s a tremendous amount of interaction with my co-workers and their families.EDU) What has surprised you the most working in the finance industry? The biggest surprise is that there’s a misconception that the finance industry is mostly number crunching. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? I’m blessed with a wife and a family who understand what I do. My support network is tremendous. not being afraid of change. 44) in the United States. whether for public accounting or any area of finance. a lot of statistics.

has a lot of energy. Take a look at those you work with. we need to take the time to mentor the future leaders of our organization. Have you ever been mentored.com Inc. and I think the slow down is starting to happen. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in accounting? If you were not in this field. he’s approaching 72 years old. I owe much of my success to those who took the time to mentor me. One of the key strengths of every well-run organization is the finance area. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Be open-minded. the dynamics of the world of finance. someone who’s credible. it would be a great question to ask: “Do you have a mentoring program?” We have a mentoring program for our staff. When I was new in the business I always thought at some point in time. Inc. my fall back was going to be running the family business. I think in any organization—for any new kids coming out of school—through the interview process. Whether it’s conversations in a car.CMU. I’d love to be playing golf professionally. Stand out. Currently I am mentoring young team members and shareholders within our organization. It’d be an interesting job and an interesting ambition.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Schneider Downs & Co. There are continuously changing rules that allow opportunity. I got two words for you: Tiger Woods. and getting into public practice.EDU) 138 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. take challenges. I saw myself running the family business. and he said to me a couple of weeks ago. You need to be inquisitive and you need to have some ambition to do it. when I get older I want a job that’s going to be fun and one that I can make a lot of money” and I said. I think the future of our industry is quite bright. or discussions in our lobby or water fountain discussions. whether it is working with small. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. I have an eightyear-old son. Because of the global economy. be ambitious and learn from those you work with. I think as leaders we’re also finding informal ways to mentor. Don’t be afraid to have the courage to go out and find the answers on your own. Coming out of college. multinational organizations.” Any predictions about the future of the industry? We operate in a global economy. I had set goals for when I wanted to become a shareholder or a partner. I enjoy the challenges of each day and public accounting has been very professionally rewarding for me. Look to see who you admire and respect. . or mentored others? How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? Have I been mentored? Yes. the opportunity is out there. or has those traits. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? Learn through your supervisors. It’s a competitive industry. Take time each day to think about what you can do to help your organization and its clients. My father has been self-employed for 45 years. to public practice. If I had a dream job. To the extent that it didn’t happen. “Son. Am I mentoring others? Yes. closely held businesses. the typical protocol is that you get three to four years of experience and you end up in industry somewhere. “Dad. I think young professionals entering the finance industry should find a mentor.. I think a lot of people like to be told what to do and those that stand out are those that take some initiative to try to seek out answers and solutions on their own. what would your dream career be now? Interestingly it’s part of the goal set that I had once I entered public accounting. I think there will always be opportunity for finance professionals to enjoy rewarding careers. to working for large. and don’t be afraid to emulate them. Had I not attained my goals. who is holding themselves out as the leader. To be a problem solver is very critical in our business. I would be the CFO for a publicly traded company.

the Vault Finance Job Board and more. message boards. CAREER LIBRARY 139 . Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. “You need to be inquisitive and you need to have some ambition to do it.. Schneider Downs & Co.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www.CMU.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Schneider Downs & Co.. Tax Advisory Services Shareholder. Inc.com/finance for insider firm profiles.vault. Inc.” — Gennaro DiBello.

Inc. I have our mission statement hanging on the wall in my office. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. .EDU) What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? What would you most like to change? As far as changing. You’ve got to think about first. Maher received her BS in business administration from St. I did the jobs I had along the way to the best of my ability. It helps if you love the company you work for and you do truly believe in its mission. I am probably the luckiest woman there is. I am fortunate enough to work for a firm that firmly believes in promoting from within. get to the end of your day and get home. She is a Certified IRA Services Professional. on other departments. Catherine Maher—Executive Director of Operations Executive Director Catherine Maher has served with Scottrade. providing our associates with 140 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. Ms. and secondly.Scottrade. I don’t know that there’s anything I’d like to change about my career. So don’t just get your report in balance.CMU. what impact this is going to have on the customer. I am just so lucky to work for a firm that is really committed to its mission. What personality traits and attributes do you think make for a good and effective executive? Someone who can make a rational decision. The most rewarding aspect? Again.com Inc. You really need to step back and think about the downstream implications of your work and how the customer could be impacted by that and how other departments could be impacted by that. Louis University. Someone that’s very observant of what goes on. Q&A with Catherine Maher What are some steps you took to get to the position that you are in now? I don’t think I consciously took specific steps for this role. the customer. Ms. You can’t be completely emotional or completely rational. specifically at the ground level. Inc. What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? The biggest thing is to think of things from all angles. I don’t think that is touched on in the classroom a whole lot. Maher maintains a Series 27 registration. don’t just think about what you need to do your job correctly or to keep your report in balance. You have to balance. So much happens there and you must pay attention to it. When you have a problem. That mission statement talks about our corporate culture. for the last 12 years and is responsible for managing all back office operations.

What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any special techniques.” I look back on that and chuckle at that day. the more opportunities you can create for yourself. I probably would have been in our IT building! It would be the only other career I really considered. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? Read as much as you can about business. You knock on the door and you ask a question. but that comes with any job. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? If you were not in the field. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a worklife balance and be a successful professional? Some days are better than others.vault. in family. All aspects of business are important: consider marketing. and our firm does believe. I think anyone considering a career in finance better also get some education in IT and project management. CAREER LIBRARY 141 . I am fortunate enough to work for a CEO and company that really preaches. too. The more well-rounded you are. study what worked for them and what did not. too. Follow the financial markets. someone whose behavior is nothing less than ethical. who really has the passion and compassion—the passion for Scottrade and the compassion for customers and for employees. no. who makes good decisions. I think you look for someone with sound judgment. fortunately. I knew I did. Find an internship. It’s really a very warm. To work for a firm that believes in the same things I do has really been fantastic. In finding a mentor. I really think it’s a give and take. I actually interviewed while I was still in college with one of our competitors and I thought. I work at home in the evenings. But at our firm.” It’s all give and take. about fostering success. Make sure you’re at least exposed to the technology side of things.com/finance for insider firm profiles. What would my dream career be? That’s a tough question. and when I came out of college I wanted to work in MIS. and about providing our customers with the products and services they need. Inc.CMU. But if my son gets sick and I have to go pick him up.EDU) Any predictions about the future of the industry? I think it is going to get more and more automated with technology developments designing the changes in our processes. “I don’t want to do that. I keep saying how lucky I am. family place.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Scottrade. officially. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. Expose yourself to as much as you can. or mentored others? How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? I would say. opportunities. Now don’t get me wrong. because since I have been here I have never once considered doing anything other than this. What has surprised you the most about working in the financial industry? I started this job two years out of college and one of the things that surprised me was the warmth of the place. Have you ever been mentored. Finance alone isn’t enough anymore. I’m fortunate to have landed in a company that believes in the same thing I do. message boards. We’re approachable. legal. accounting. they understand that. So. we don’t sit in the office with our doors closed all day. “Your family comes first. Find an interesting corporation and read about it. but that’s really true. I have not one day considered anything else. what would your dream career be now? I graduated with majors in MIS and finance. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. probably it would have not been entirely different. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. I feel very lucky to have such a healthy balance. there have been some tough days.

so maybe five accounting-related courses. operational and controls review.CMU. She is a major contributor to the innovative advancements and industry leadership that have become the trademark for SS&G. I basically learned everything I know about business hands on: how to be an auditor and how to manage people. Ms. Rubin—Director. technology-based businesses. Ms. tax planning and consulting. Ms. you take entry-level accounting.EDU) In college. Rubin received her BS in accounting from Miami University in Oxford. you’ve had a brush with accounting but. Everything I do pretty much everyday I learned on the job. and management consulting services. and country clubs. Ms. Rubin has spent her professional career working with privately owned businesses. service businesses. When you come out of school. You really learn the job on the job. Assurance Services Director Patricia Rubin has spent the last 15 years at SS&G Financial Services. Rubin is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Ohio Society of Certified Public Accountants. Rubin was a senior manager at PricewaterhouseCoopers in Cleveland. Your accounting classes give you a good overview of the industry and a little about the world you are about to enter. where she spent 11 years. then manager up to senior manager. Rubin is responsible for all assurance services in its Cleveland office. Patricia B. nonprofit organizations. Inc. I was with PwC for 11 years before I joined SS&G.SS&G Financial Services. a Big Eight firm at the time. Ms. I took a traditional audit partner path. Ohio. Q&A with Patricia Rubin What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? I started out in public accounting at PricewaterhouseCoopers. manufacturing and distribution companies. . intermediate accounting. I then switched from a national firm to a regional firm. you are not really taught how to do actual accounting work. She assists clients with accounting.com Inc. What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. if you are planning on a career in public accounting or even finance. I came to SS&G as a manager and was promoted to director (partner) shortly after I joined. Playing an integral role in one of the fastest growing firms in the country. then a senior accountant. At PwC. but everything else is on the job. due diligence. starting as a staff accountant. 142 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. unless you’ve had internships. employee benefit plans. She is a member and immediate past co-chair of the attorneys and accountants division of the Jewish Community Federation of Cleveland serves as treasurer of the Oakwood Club and is on the board of trustees of the Park Synagogue. Prior to joining SS&G. attestation services. strategic planning. and probably one tax and two audit classes. Inc. mergers and acquisitions.

He’d say. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? There are a few things I’ve done over the years. People want things faster and faster and it can get very difficult. every Wednesday night and it worked for him. message boards. I think every man and woman wants some sort of work/life balance and a lot of companies preach it. Inc. Once you’re out of school. I like helping their businesses grow and succeed. The first is I really enjoy serving my clients. or 5 p. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? I’ve always worked full time. I worked with a partner who always left early on Wednesdays. Second. and they are understanding and very supportive. I try to stay on top of my children’s lives by meeting teachers in the beginning of the year. to my career. “My wife knows I’m coming home. First of all. particularly in the winter. it’s my family night. As a family unit we’re very close. I try to stay on top of what is going on with my family. Everyone has their tricks-of-the-trade. as well as constantly meeting new people. I never have in my entire career. I enjoy working with our staff. What would you most like to change? I would probably try and figure out a way to reduce the number of hours during tax season! Aside from that. I have a fairly good work-life balance. I block the time on my calendar just as I would for a client or a doctor’s appointment. we catapulted into the paperless world.m. teaching them. I never work late on Friday nights. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. It can be very demanding.m. I have a husband and two children. but you really have to study hard and get good grades in order to get a better job.CMU. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in accounting? Public accounting is a great career and a fun industry. There have been times when I might not have been able to do something they wanted me to do and they had to be understanding.com/finance for insider firm profiles. but its rewarding as well. but at this point. I always look ahead to when vacations are and do not let events and days off sneak up on me. By being organized and always being a step ahead of the curve. be a good listener. It may sound corny.” Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. but as individuals we’re very independent due. I make them a priority and don’t really feel like I am missing out on anything. and making sure to be on top of their school calendar. “I have to be at the school and have this huge presentation at the same time tomorrow. we now live in a world where everything is instant. but our company lives it. CAREER LIBRARY 143 . The good thing about SS&G is that every combination works because it’s a resultoriented place. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. and seeing them grow and mature in their careers.EDU) What has surprised you the most about working in the accounting industry? It’s constantly changing. effective executive? You need to be flexible. I am able to avoid running around in crisis-mode the night before saying. If there’s something I need to attend or something I want to do.” He went home at 4:30 p. and you do not have to be sitting at your desk from eight in the morning to eight at night. At SS&G. Do you have any special techniques. there are a lot of career paths that you can choose from and your first position will help you along the way. The technology advances in the last three or four years have been significant. which was a challenge and a learning process but has made us a more efficient firm. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. Sometimes you just need to think about it and process it. have strong organizational skills. and be knowledgeable about the business you’re in.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals SS&G Financial Services. It seems like we need to tell the business world that sometimes it’s ok to sleep on something and that you can’t always have an instant answer.vault. in part. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? I look at the rewarding aspects of my career in two ways.

moving from a national firm to a regional firm was a real life choice for me. Honestly. or mentored others? How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? SS&G has a formal mentoring program in which I have been both a mentor and a mentee. however.” You have to like the person and respect them personally and professionally. Accounting is really a people business. I wanted to go to a four-year college and be something when I finished. I also think that accounting has the misconception of being boring and that you just move numbers around all day. . you have to have strong communication skills. I’m not sure what direction I want to take. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in accounting? When I think back to school. We are constantly questioning our independence and what the rules allow us to do. I’ve had a couple mentors that had a big influence on me. It sounds nerdy but I was that person! I liked math. An employee looking for a mentor at SS&G just needs to contact HR and make a list of desired mentors.EDU) 144 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. I remember thinking I have to go to college and I’m good with numbers so I think I’m going to become an accountant. we have to be careful to continue to dot our Is and cross our Ts.com Inc.CMU. There are a lot of really good jobs with potential to grow. Have you ever been mentored. I had a one-year-old child and the job at the national firm required frequent travel and I didn’t have as much control of my schedule. it’s still a fabulous career. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. You must have the technical skills but as a student. I didn’t really know what it was although I did have some family members who were accountants. When I look back. All that said. To really be good at your job as an auditor or tax professional. Any predictions about the future of the industry? I think as the scrutiny of what we do continues to grow in intensity. and then they are matched up. a lot of my mentors resulted from having a strong working relationship. You have to find someone you really feel comfortable with and be able to say. “I’m not really sure I want to do this. Independence in a regional firm is always an issue. The numerous regulatory bodies that govern us make everything even more challenging. Inc. so I decided to become an accountant. which turned into a mentor relationship.” or “I’m struggling with this. Also I really wanted to be a little closer to home. so I changed jobs in order to accomplish that work/life balance that I just didn’t see happening in the early 1990s at a national CPA firm.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals SS&G Financial Services. you should really develop your people skills because those with the strong people skills are the ones who advance the fastest and the furthest.

Accounting & Auditing. but you really have to study hard and get good grades in order to get a better job. Director.CMU.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals SS&G Financial Services. CAREER LIBRARY 145 . CPA.” — Patricia B. Rubin.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. Inc. “It may sound corny. Inc. message boards.vault. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.com/finance for insider firm profiles. SS&G Financial Services. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.

loan sales & trading. Also. O’Halloran provides strategic guidance to all levels of management of businesses in the U. Before joining TD Securities. Mr. but what it comes down to is competing against other firms. O’Halloran serves on the Canadian Association of New York Advisory Board and the Governing Board of the University College Club of Princeton. and operational activities in the U. O’Halloran worked at The First Boston Corporation. O’Halloran received his BA from Princeton University and an MBA from the Harvard Graduate School of Business.S. As a member of the TD Securities Management Committee.CMU. and is a Trustee for the Institute of International Bankers. You learn those tools in schools.S. sales and trading. He has also served as head of global loan syndications responsible for all syndicated loan underwritings for TD Securities worldwide. motivating people is an important part of my job today and that’s also not something you’re necessarily going to learn in the classroom. Debt Capital Markets where he oversaw loan origination. on the people side. Brendan J.EDU) Things like persistence in winning transactions. Q&A with Brendan O’Halloran What are some steps you took to get in the position you are in now? I had a really broad exposure to various businesses here at TD and in my previous job at First Boston where I started out after college. Mr. .S. I’ve done everything from corporate finance to M&A. and fixed income origination and distribution. It’s hard to teach what goes into actually being successful in the banking world. 146 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault.TD Securities. It’s not necessarily about being able to calculate the best weighted average cost of capital in the quickest way. O’Halloran joined the New York corporate finance business at TD in 1989 and has gained extensive origination and market experience during his career. TD Securities & Senior Vice President. TD Bank Financial Group Vice Chair and Regional Head Brendan O’Halloran has responsibility for TD Bank Financial Group’s investment banking. Prior to his current position. What are some things you learned on the job and not in the classroom? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.com Inc. O’Halloran—Vice Chair and Regional Head USA. I’ve seen a lot. other bright individuals on Wall Street and coming away with the deal or the transaction or the mandate. Mr. Mr. he plays a key role on the firm’s senior leadership team. getting new business. loan syndications and now my position is really very much a general management role. Inc. private placements. Mr. he was head of U. high yield origination.

So inevitably you will click with one person and may end up working on transactions. People will cancel Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. what they want out of their next position. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.EDU) What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any special techniques or philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance? Finance is a fast-paced career.CMU. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. I think as you progress through the organization. more often than not with that person because you make a good team. what their issues are at the current position. because I’ve worked for other organizations where the guilt factor was huge. that you find someone you work well with and they like working with you and they want you on their deal teams and that’s how you find your mentor. The pace of the business is very fast and there are some times when I want to have a 15-minute conversation about an issue and I really only have five.com/finance for insider firm profiles. But the finance world is a great place to have informal mentoring and it’s just by virtue of the fact that you’re working in deal teams. it’s not a 9-to-5 career. you’re learning a lot from the people above you. find solutions. It’s probably the same throughout the industry. That’s how you learn and develop friendships and collegial relationships with people and then you turn around and you become the associate and you feel it incumbent to pass those lessons on to the analyst on the team. message boards. Unless you’re all working intelligently together. It is strong. I am completely disconnected from work. It’s a culture. spending time with people. but it’s more informal in nature. if I had a choice. On a more individual level. You may not work every day of the weekend. I probably spend 40 percent of my time doing that and that’s the most rewarding. travel becomes more of an issue than putting books together at midnight. So it is a challenge for your family and you really are on call seven days a week. How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? I think people gravitate to individuals on their deal teams. spending time with people not only on the business issues. If you had a choice what would you most like to change? However much I’d love to spend more time with the people. It may not click on every deal team.vault. Have you ever been mentored. especially in the beginning of your career. or mentored others? Our industry lends itself to mentoring although not so much in a formal manner where you meet every Monday at 5 o’clock. CAREER LIBRARY 147 . respect the important personal events in your life and allow you to feel that those things can come first when they should come first. even on a vacation. talking about their careers. That is the sort of the mentoring that goes on here at TD. I’d slow the pace. you may work on one deal team where you don’t find that fit. their aspirations. in turn. along with a genuine concern for the people working for you at the firm. your team will suffer. There’s always a BlackBerry email that needs to be responded to. I don’t think these two things are necessarily in conflict. but I really can’t think of a time where. I think every firm has a different culture and the culture here is very much one of wanting to see you succeed in a motivated and aggressive manner. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? It’s definitely working with people. or a conference call. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. The key in balancing that is finding an organization that understands you work hard and that that’s your personality and you want to succeed. But at any time here at TD. But not ever at the expense of the ideals that we have here about what sort of environment we should be creating for people. They. effective executive? It’s a balance of intensity and desire to win new business and generate revenues or execute trades. So. helping them get through problems.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals TD Securities Inc. It’s almost by osmosis that it happens. I also have a business to run. and pitch clients. focus on all of their needs. You have to put the hours in. you may be working on three or four different transactions at the same time.

when there are outside interests you need to attend to.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals TD Securities Inc. but it’s been a difficult year for many dealers. There are a lot of other jobs out there in the world and everybody has their tough days. so you’re not stuck on staples. What would your dream career be now? When I finish this. four-. It’s a great industry to enjoy the fruits of your labor. this is really terrible.CMU. You have the ability to execute a myriad of products. is what has surprised me the most. .com Inc. that may not be the most financially rewarding way to spend your life. But I think the industry understands these cycles. you should feel comfortable doing that. leveraged loan financings. But I think over all. and to some extent that was because that’s what everyone else was doing. You do have to put in a little homework and find out if you want to be in high yield or investment grade or public finance and make sure you’re comfortable with how those subsectors are viewed within the industry. It seems like “oh gosh. so when there are emergencies. 148 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. The one thing people have to do whether they’re choosing finance as an industry to go into. you took it. You could be the best general manager in the world. If it is. I’m very happy I chose finance. etc. But my strengths are my ability to interact with people on the client side and on the employee side. you have to spend some time and make sure that it’s not only something you love but something that is going to be growing. what have I gotten myself into. Any predictions about the future of the industry? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. I considered working in sports marketing for one of the professional sports leagues for whom I had done consulting work or as a manager for a manufacturing plant. we understand you give a lot of your life to the firm. But. you work a lot of hours. you have to be prepared to work hard. I think with finance you’re given a wide perspective on various industries. five-year cycles. You always feel the world is ending when you see the financial results that are coming out now with the big dealers. That’s what I enjoy most and I’m not sure I’d find that anywhere else. It does make for a fun way to spend your day.” But I think once you’ve been through a few cycles—I’ve been through about three cycles now where things are really bad—you do start to understand that the industry expects those cycles. What has surprised you most about working in the finance industry? Being surrounded by really great people with similar motivations who want to work on sophisticated financings and trades. swaps and that makes for a career that is different every day. If you could get a job at a Wall Street firm.” It comes with the confidence that you work for an organization where you’re allowed to balance your life. whether it is in finance or elsewhere. it might be nice to use a more artistic element of my brain and do something a little more creative in nature. their trips to be at their sister’s high school graduation because they’re so deep in the mindset of “I’ve got to be here. but if you’re working at a manufacturing plant that makes staples. When you work for an organization that treats people with respect. So in some ways you get to work in a bunch of different industries. So I’m confident the industry will bounce back. It doesn’t make them any more enjoyable or any less painful. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on finance? Right out of college I worked for First Boston. You could be offering your client high yield bonds.” At TD it’s very much a culture of “listen. because you’re doing financing for them or providing M&A advice. It seems to go in three-. Finance really provides open-ended opportunities for those who choose it as a career. or whether they’re choosing subsets within finance. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? Make sure it’s what you want. but I think everybody’s quite optimistic that things will be better a year from now than they are today and they’ll be better two years from now than they are a year from now.EDU) We’ve had a great year here at TD. when there are issues at home. in retrospect. it’s a privilege to be surrounded by people who are so bright and who are really all trying to accomplish the same thing you are. It’s always hard when you’re starting out. After business school. then employees give back even more.

Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. but we think the opportunity for growth.vault. building around TD Banknorth and Commerce and TD Ameritrade are huge.com/finance for insider firm profiles.000 branches in the United States stretching from Maine to Florida.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals TD Securities Inc. It’s been a lower risk strategy. on the retail side. So we’ve taken a little bit of a different tact with respect to our investment banking and trading activities. We’ll soon have over 1. We’re very excited about our growth in the U.CMU. We’re in a unique position right now and very bullish on the future. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. TD Banknorth and we’re in the process of acquiring Commerce Bank. We also own a significant portion of TD Ameritrade. Here at TD we’ve taken a different strategy. message boards.S. CAREER LIBRARY 149 .

it’s more difficult to find that. I try to stay focused on the strategic issues. I’m a niche specialist in what I do and increasingly that’s what you need in today’s economy. 150 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. You need something special. Burns has more than 20 years of experience serving many prestigious institutions. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. He is also a member of the budget and finance committee at United Way of Massachusetts Bay. the Massachusetts Society of Certified Public Accountants and the Board of Trustees at Mount Ida College. Mr. Mr. something unique that resonates with you. Mr. accounting matters and related business concerns. commitment to results and for me. even though I am a CPA and that may seem counter-intuitive. What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? The biggest thing that I’ve learned is that at the end of the day. Burns. not just a tactical level. A new client is always exciting and fun. What would you most like to change? I think one of the challenges many of us have in our careers is finding time to operate at a strategic level. Burns joined Tofias from Grant Thornton. audits under OMB Circular A-133. but it really is a relationship business. successfully developing younger professionals in our firm. and a good way to know that you must have done right with existing clients. and has a reputation for quality service in the not-for-profit community. Burns is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.Tofias PC Michael T. focusing on a niche. Mr. CPA has served with Tofias PC heading up the not-for-profit practice since July 2004. internal control reviews and debt offerings. the business of professional services is a relationship business and not really a numbers business.EDU) What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? Positive feedback from a client. and sometimes if you’re a generalist. That’s something that I work on every day.CMU. where he was the audit department head as well as the partner in charge of the not-for-profit practice. Do people trust me? Can they count on me for the substance and business knowledge that they view as key? These things transcend beyond the accounting and management classes that might have been core to my formal education. .com Inc. He assists his clients in the areas of financial statements. uplifting and gratifying. Burns—Shareholder Shareholder Michael T. Q&A with Michael Burns What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? It really comes down to hard work. He was the lead partner on over a dozen college and university accounts in addition to most of the not-for-profit accounts of the office. Burns received his BS from Bentley College. and working with new clients.

When I hear the word mentoring. Did we properly measure. Whether it’s the effect of international competition or other reasons. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. Have you ever been mentored. offering flexible/alternative work schedules and other amenities to retain talent. When you think about the crisis we’re going through in the financial services arena and the banks and the elegance of some of the products that financial institutions have created over the last 10 to 20 years. What has surprised you the most about working in the accounting industry? For me.com/finance for insider firm profiles. by and large. It’s when clients call and surprise you or throw you a curve ball that you realize sometimes the best laid plans have to be re-laid. CAREER LIBRARY 151 . I feel everybody immediately locks up and thinks of formal relationships. informal. I think back to one of my earliest mentors who really taught me the passion for customer service that is so important in this business and while he might not have been the most approachable guy in the office.EDU) Of course. Also. I also think you have to have intellectual substance to be an effective executive. We are afforded some flexibility and control of our schedule. continuous improvement is a must and the pace of change will amaze you. I only have a very small calculator. It’s a business education and a great place to get on-the-job knowledge of how businesses function and operate. account for and quantify the risks that existed? It’s anything but static and numbers. there’s more ambiguity today than there’s ever been. they will gain tremendous value for the rest of their career. Do you have any special techniques. or mentored others? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. I pull it out. those create challenges for the accounting industry. but I think mentors are. Those are the things I have to make sure I do as a mentor for others and show them the virtues. Whether somebody stays in this as their career choice or does this as part of their career. effective executive? Passion is key. I knew he did this well and I really looked to him to teach me how to do this. Everyone has mentors over their careers and they’re important.CMU.vault. decision-making in this world of ours today is different. and Tofias is no exception. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? My philosophy is to accept that we are in a client service business. benefits and values they can get by being in our business organization. you have to care about what you’re doing and why you’re doing it. They’re the people you naturally gravitate to. Some people need more predictability than flexibility and this job offers flexibility more than predictability. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in accounting? Young people are well-served by the skills they can gain with a career in public accounting. that you look to for counsel and advice.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Tofias PC What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. message boards. once you accept that about this business. it’s the pace of change. I’m in charge of managing my client relationships and making it all work. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? As with many careers it may take time to figure out the best work/life balance system that is effective for you and/or your family. If I need to go to the doctor today or need to take a day off. it’s much more than just cranking numbers. which I keep behind me on the desk and every once in a while. it makes it easier for you to adjust and thrive. Outsiders view it as a numbers business and although numbers are the basis of decision-making. Many companies are focused on helping employees find this balance. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. Although this is an old line of business.

Accounting continues to be a great place for growth and opportunity and good pay. Also. My dream job would be a sales and marketing role. It requires being proactive on the part of the person looking to be mentored to make sure they’re getting the kind of mentoring they want.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Tofias PC How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? I think individuals have to be focused on what it is that’s important to them. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in accounting? If you were not in the field. Those people will give the time back.com Inc. and who they see extolling the virtues and values they’d like to mirror. I would have to go into sales and marketing because I’m past the point of creating a business for myself. it’s relatively recession-proof and that’s always going to be something to consider. Then get in front of those people and make sure they notice you. It’s always going to be a solid. what would your dream career be now? I thought about owning my own business. attracting new business so I’m certainly doing a lot of that now. Any predictions about the future of the industry? We’re just beginning to settle down post-Sarbanes Oxley. But I came into accounting.EDU) 152 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. safe career. I think the pendulum really swung in a tough and militant direction and I think we’re beginning to get a little bit more mainstream now. and I stuck with it. That’s a big part of a CPA Partner’s job..CMU. This is what I’ve done from the start and if I wasn’t in this today. i. who they look up to. it isn’t necessarily going to get exported like many of our jobs have.e. For young people. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. .

the Vault Finance Job Board and more.” — Michael T.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Tofias PC “It’s when clients call and surprise you or throw you a curve ball that you realize sometimes the best laid plans have to be re-laid.vault. CAREER LIBRARY 153 .com/finance for insider firm profiles. Burns. it makes it easier for you to adjust and thrive.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www.CMU. once you accept that about this business. Shareholder. message boards. Tofias PC Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.

who are eager to learn and excel in their careers. Forasté spent nine years in Arthur Andersen's commercial audit division. including manufacturing. Things are not always going to be to the penny—but you learn the concept of materiality—how inexact something can be before it is an issue. in the classroom. especially in accounting. mergers and acquisitions.Vitale. Andersen had a fairly structured career path that I followed. and client relationships are essential to one’s career path. He provides services to clients ranging from closely held owner managed companies to multinational public companies in a variety of industries. When you are working on actual client engagements that is rarely the case. Forasté is also a leader in the firm's employee benefit plan group and provides audit and compliance services to a wide range of employee benefit plans. Forasté is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Massachusetts Society of Certified Public Accountants. Mr. you’re looking more at the mechanics of how the accounting works. . 154 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. retail. restaurants and service providers. Caturano as a manager in 2002. Ltd. you are trained to work out a problem to the exact dollar. Having the ability to work with these young and energetic people. Caturano & Company. Michael C. When you’re in the classroom. is extremely rewarding and being able to assist them with this journey continues to be the most rewarding part of this job for me. I joined Vitale.EDU) What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? Public accounting has a constant influx of students coming into the industry straight from college. What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? This is a customer service industry. Mr. Forasté serves in Vitale Caturano’s specialized audit practice and brings over 13 years of audit experience to the firm. Forasté—Shareholder Vice President Michael C. continues to be a career highlight for me. Watching them grow as accountants. restructuring and Sarbanes-Oxley compliance. In addition. distribution.CMU. I was promoted to partner last year. as well as people. it’s about developing and maintaining client relationships. He is highly accomplished in the areas of financial statement audits. Forasté received his BS in accounting from Boston College.com Inc. Prior to joining the firm. Mr. but when you get into the industry. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Mr. starting as a staff person. Q&A with Michael Forasté What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? I started in public accounting directly out of college and worked for Arthur Andersen. progressing to senior and then manager.

and major work items follow.CMU. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. Utilizing the experiences of those who went before you can give you an invaluable perspective and help you better navigate through your career. It is important to remember that family always comes first. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.com/finance for insider firm profiles. A successful career in finance is a marathon. Mentoring has been a big component of my career. Voicemails. message boards. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. It is a very dynamic environment. but I feel these are too heavily relied upon. and avoid having a shortsighted view of things. You need to be able to develop relationships with clients and employees with varying personalities and learn how to work with each one of them most effectively. client and employee. Caturano & Company. the less important items. What would you most like to change? Although I am a proponent of technology. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? Every day is a different experience. It’s a constant juggling situation but you have to make sure the major things are taken care of first—and the rest kind of fits in where it can. I feel as though too many people take advantage of it as a means of communication. Once those are placed. Do you use a Blackberry? Actually I do! It’s a curse and a great tool all at the same time. Many times. being able to problem-solve is key. You have to earn your stripes. Do you have any special techniques.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Vitale. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? Work/life balance can be compared to a container (time) that you fill with rocks and pebbles. challenges. You have to think of the long term. The key is making sure the important items go in first. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Work/life balance is a constant battle. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. Faceto-face meetings and phone calls are much more effective and personal when fostering relationships. brings different personalities. Ltd. The rocks signify the major items in your life and those are placed into the container first. It may have the same underlying mechanics when you get down to it but the fact that every day brings a new challenge makes each day very rewarding. and I enjoy the unpredictability. or pebbles. find their space. or mentored others? Yes. e-mails and text messages definitely have their place in effective communication. Determining the best way to work through these problems to get to the correct answer is key. You’re never doing the same thing twice. problems don’t work out exactly. I continue to lean on my mentors for advice and gain much satisfaction serving as a mentor for my staff. Every engagement. demands and issues. effective executive? Communication skills are essential. Technology makes working anywhere possible—so you need to keep yourself in check.EDU) Have you ever been mentored. yet demanding career. In addition. It’s not a get-rich-quick type of industry. You never know what the next day is going to bring. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? It’s a very rewarding. work through your career. not a sprint.vault. CAREER LIBRARY 155 .

S. what would your dream career be now? A professional golfer! That’s my dream. There is a plan in place to bring the international accounting rules and the U. a manager. they should schedule some time and ask questions—perhaps even ask them to be a mentor. companies investing heavily abroad and foreign companies looking to invest in the U. I thought of becoming a doctor. Caturano & Company. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. I also recommend that once they get to know some of the managers and partners. I focused on accounting in college as my major. a senior and then sometimes an experienced staff person and a new staff person. How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? At Vitale.EDU) 156 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on public accounting? As a kid. whether it was science or math. In the public accounting industry. I recommend that they ask their HR departments about whether or not there is a formal mentoring program. we have a very formal mentoring program. I think I would like to be a college professor in accounting.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Vitale. How can a student or a new employee approach someone to be a mentor in the absence of a formal system in place at a company? Having open communication. On a more realistic basis. Any predictions about the future of the industry? Accounting is becoming more of a globally-focused industry in response to a global economy. Public accounting was a natural succession for me. The staff people spend a lot of time with seniors especially.S. accounting rules closer together.CMU. Ltd. You can develop informal mentoring relationships very easily just by asking questions and being open to discussion.S. . they need to be proactive to seek out the right person to confide in and learn from. But I always had an interest in numbers. If you were not in the field. We have U. and just by talking to them and asking them questions they can develop that relationship. Caturano. all engagements are set up in teams where you have a partner. If there is not a program in place.com Inc. I took some accounting classes in high school and really felt a connection.

message boards.com/finance for insider firm profiles. Ltd. or pebbles. the less important items. The key is making sure the important items go in first. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Vitale. The rocks signify the major items in your life and those are placed into the container first. Vitale.vault. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Once those are placed.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. Caturano & Company.” — Michael Forasté. CAREER LIBRARY 157 .CMU. Shareholder. “Work/life balance can be compared to filling a container (time) with rocks and pebbles. Caturano & Company. Ltd. find their space.

Q&A with Matthew Gooch What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? I joined William Blair as an analyst 11 years ago. It was a grand slam transaction. and your role was strictly support. He became one of the youngest banking principals in the history of William Blair & Company at the age of 30. What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? During college I interned in the investment banking division of a bulge bracket firm. and the great thing about that is that you get to have great involvement with your clients and get an understanding of building relationships with them. it’s very rewarding to see how the company matures and how you were a big part of helping them achieve their goals. and having a positive attitude. LLC Matthew Gooch—Principal and Co-Head of Special Situation & Restructuring Practice Principal Matthew Gooch splits his time between William Blair & Company’s Chicago and London offices.CMU. but after you’ve been working several days around the clock. Gooch received his BA from Emory University and an MBA from the Graduate School of Business at the University of Chicago. Since joining William Blair & Company in 1997. Gooch has been involved in more than 50 completed mergers. as opposed to just doing one transaction.com Inc. to go the extra step. When you have a relationship with them and continue to have multiple transactions. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. a deal team would be 10 people. . the people who can do it with a smile distinguish themselves. There are a lot of smart people who join investment banking analyst programs. Mr.EDU) Another thing that is crucial in investment banking is understanding that the transaction you’re doing likely is the most important transaction your client is going to do in their entire life and being able to work with them when they’re going through the entire emotional roller coaster of the deal. and in London he focuses on crossborder mergers and acquisitions. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? I recently completed a deal where we helped a client buy a company with a private equity sponsor three years ago. This is something I never learned in school. One of the main reasons I decided to join William Blair was that our deal teams here are three or four people. In Chicago he serves as co-head of the firm’s special situation and restructuring practice. It was just great to help that company through its life cycle. Mr.William Blair & Company. There. totaling more than $3 billion. Things that were most important in my advancement were a real interest and desire to be dealing in what I was doing. and today they sold it to a strategic buyer. a willingness and curiosity to see what else could be done. Mr. Gooch is a CFA charter holder and serves on the board of directors at Advanced Biotherapy and Beatya Systems and is an active volunteer through his church. capital raises and restructuring assignments. 158 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault.

and it highlights the importance of having a good banker. and you need to figure out what you want to be and what specific area Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. there are such huge differences. and she gives me thoughts and then I give her thoughts. finance is one of the strongest parts of our economy. A lot of times. She travels a lot. there’s sunshine around the corner. effective executive? You have to be very rational. Do you have any special techniques. and they teach you there that markets are efficient. as well. it’s not efficient. I think that William Blair has been rewarding professionally. you have to be good at your job. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. So.CMU. not take the easy way. My fiancé and I don’t talk about the individual clients or the specific situations that we are working on. So if you love it. message boards. And that’s been a real surprise for me. LLC What would you most like to change? Having a little more principal in the deals that we are doing would be appealing. It makes for a much more interesting conversation than “What did you do at the office today. Finance is a very broad field. the guy who ran the office set me up on a blind date seven years ago with my current fiancée. you’re doing a good job at it. You could have someone bidding $200 million and someone bidding $700 million for the same company! Literally. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? A work/life balance is part of our culture at William Blair. bankers will say “Oh. but in the middle market. I would be more apt to crash on the couch and watch television.” The ability to not shirk away from that kind of responsibility. If you don’t generally love it. I am always thinking about how to get the most out of every hour. is crucial. Let’s figure out the steps and ways to make this as least painful as possible. especially in the M&A world. and I travel quite a bit. Congratulations! Thank you! I started in William Blair’s Chicago office and spent three years here and then spent six years in the London office. When I was in our London office. It makes you realize that everything is precious. When you look at the core components of the United States right now. you’re going to have to hand the keys back to the bank.com/finance for insider firm profiles. But the hard thing to say is. as well as personally! My fiancé is a consultant with a major strategy consulting firm. It’s hard for money to motivate someone over a prolonged period of time.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals William Blair & Company. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? I’m engaged to be married. but you’re also thinking about it outside of work. “This business is not worth all the money you’re losing.EDU) The inefficiency of markets. the Vault Finance Job Board and more.vault.” That’s the easy thing to say. and I think it’s real important to involve your spouse. we’ll get you out of these things. And I think it makes you realize that you must take advantage of the time you have together. They may be efficient when you’re trying to get a price on General Electric or Microsoft. CAREER LIBRARY 159 . but we talk in general about the different issues we’re dealing with. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. Also. I think that if I were to work 35 hours a week and not travel. honey?” Being able to discuss work with my fiancée helps strengthen our relationship. What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? I encourage them to consider finance.” or “don’t worry about that. You have to be someone who can evaluate a situation and communicate it to a client clearly and not be afraid of giving the hard news to a client. I think that when you’re traveling as much and working as much as I am. you’re not going to be good at it. no problem. I got my MBA from the University of Chicago.

I also encourage them to realize that if they’re 21 years old and coming out of college. have very strong balance sheets. companies buying internationally and international companies buying here are going to create global enterprises.EDU) 160 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. I grew up in the New York area. and while 2008 is going to be a very tough year for private equity. so you get to see a lot of different aspects and get great training. and we’re actually great friends now. and I considered joining that. I had worked with William Blair on an equity offering. Have you ever been mentored. How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? At William Blair. we are really good at mentoring.com Inc. as much as they think they know what they want to do. I really like the corporate finance programs. and as a result of that. after spending six years in London. Ten years later.CMU.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals William Blair & Company. It happened 10 years ago. It was a perfect relationship. there will still be a huge amount of interest from strategic buyers who. So enter the field that gives you as many alternatives as possible. We will find people to mentor. They were principals in the organization who would give me advice on specific industries. the finance industry is poised for a healthy long-term future.S. But it was really between that and finance. different types of transactions and general guidance on how to make your way and be successful. LLC of finance that you want to be in. which have limited durations. But often what happens is a natural relationship will form between a junior person and a more senior person who has parallel interests in certain industries or types of transactions. . I am back in Chicago. or mentored others? I’ve had multiple mentors. When William Blair asked me to join them. he’s one of my groomsmen. and I really liked the people I worked with. and sometimes that works really well. they probably don’t even know what the real function of what they think they want to do is. but only if I couldn’t be in finance! Any predictions about the future of the industry? Globalization and the corresponding M&A activity it creates are going to continue. The other mentors I’ve had were various senior people when I was an associate vice president. If you were not in the field. U. what would your dream career be now? Formula 1 race car driver. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? My dad has a successful small business. When I interned at the bulge bracket firm. I always thought that it would be two years in Chicago—I’d never been there before—and I would of course move back to New York. As far as life decisions go. My first mentor was someone who was two years older than me out of undergraduate school and—besides the formal training program that everyone goes through—he was my go-to guy for how to actually do the day-to-day functioning at William Blair. in general.

CMU. message boards.vault. you probably don’t even know what the real function is of what you think you want to do—get a broad experience before deciding.com/finance for insider firm profiles. LLC “If you’re 21 years old and coming out of college. CAREER LIBRARY 161 .” — Matthew Gooch. William Blair & Company. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. Principal & Co-head of Special Situations. LLC Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals William Blair & Company.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. as much as you think you know what you want to do.

to emulate the good and to learn from the mistakes made by others. Bourke received his BS in accounting from Kean University. I also believed that nothing stood in the way of my desire to become a partner at WS+B. nor did I feel a constant need to compare myself with others. He lives in Manasquan. on appropriateness of technologies being employed within firms. Bourke also serves on the AICPA’s CITP Credential Committee and the AICPA Top Technology Initiatives Task Force and is a current member of AICPA Council. I did not get hung up in the actions of others.J. . he has the responsibility for overseeing all technology issues and operations for the firm’s eleven offices and over 500 employees. He has been consulted by numerous CPA Firms throughout the U. Bourke is a frequent speaker at many State CPA Societies.WithumSmith+Brown James C. Mr.J. he is also responsible for the annual technology budget. New Jersey Technology Council and NJ Biz Magazine on topics specifically related to technologies employed within a CPA Firm. Throughout my entire career. In addition. I focused on my abilities and what I wanted to do to reach my goals. wireless network configuration. New Jersey office. I believe that if it were not for our managing partner and the example and lifestyle that he set. Mr.CMU. When I joined WS+B. Even today. as well as overseeing the acquisition. the AICPA. Bourke—Shareholder & Director of Information Technology Shareholder and Director of Information Technology James C. N.com Inc. internet connectivity solutions. I did not let hurdles and obstructions get in my way. I also focused on what people before me did. Mr. Bourke is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the New Jersey Society of CPAs. even though I never told him. He was one of the first CPAs in the nation to receive the Certified Information Technology Professional designation from the AICPA.EDU) I have been at WithumSmith+Brown for 21 years and I have been afforded some great opportunities here. Bourke’s vast industry service. I might not even be in this profession today. with his wife and children. Mr. In addition to Mr.S. I worried about my own work and how to best serve our clients. 162 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. I saw our managing partner as a great mentor and that mentoring was extremely important to me. Bourke serves in WithumSmith+Brown’s Red Bank. Mr. I had an unbelievable passion for our profession and a desire to be the best at what I did. He has has authored many articles dealing with firm technology issues and was featured on the cover of past issues of Accounting Technology Magazine and Practical Accountant Magazine. N. Bourke’s responsibilities consist of network design and implementation. implementation and training of new applications and technologies throughout the firm. Also. Q&A with James Bourke What are some steps that you took to get to the position that you are in now? Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. He currently serves on the executive committee as immediate past president for the New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants and is past-chairman of the NJSCPA Chapter operations committee and past-president of the Monmouth/Ocean Chapter of the NJSCPA. technology strategic planning.

What advice would you give a young person considering a career in finance? Intern within the industry while you are in college.CMU. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. Instead of flipping burgers. However. hands-on. What impact has your career had on your personal and family life? Do you have any special techniques. 1 in my life. Although we had no formal mentor program. So. Understanding the needs of your clients and fulfilling them is what makes you a great accountant.EDU) Have you ever been mentored. I watched what he did. I would love to change the timing of tax season. responsive service. we go as a family to all of the NJSCPA Get-Away conventions. but his actions were mentoring me. I’ll bring my kids on due diligence trips if they are off from school and they will learn about the business our client is buying or selling. or mentored others? How can someone find a mentor within their company/industry? Our firm has a formal mentoring program where we identify those to be mentored and we associate someone their senior to mentor and guide them throughout their career. so even early on in my career I was going out to clients and working on challenging engagements. What is the most rewarding aspect of your career? What would you most like to change? It is most rewarding when I see how appreciative clients are when you go out of your way to service them.com/finance for insider firm profiles. It is Withum philosophy to provide that on-the-job training. he didn’t realize it. Through this. What personality traits or attributes do you think make for a good. and fortunately for me. We know that we are not the least expensive firm in town but we provide our clients with the highest level of service. to be a great accountant. It’s always inspiring to see these very successful people who so passionately pursue them—the most unexpected endeavors that you wouldn’t imagine could be so successful. I have managed all of my son’s and daughter’s baseball and soccer teams from t-ball through majors. Tax season is so busy that I wish we could spend more time engaging with our clients day to day than the in’s and out’s of the tax process. message boards. but it does not teach us how to take it to the next level. find a firm. as well as his passion for what he did and our profession. What has surprised you the most about working in the finance industry? The fact that there are so many people out there with so many unique ideas to make money. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.vault. like WithumSmith+Brown that has a great intern program. effective executive? Good listening skills and the ability to give compliments in addition to criticism. I work at a firm where this belief is part of firm culture. That is something that you learn to do on the job. their needs. I focused on the traits and characteristics exhibited by our managing partner. Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. how he always made time for his family and the activities that his children were involved in. their concerns. how he balanced work and life. I learned how important it is that I listen to my clients. CAREER LIBRARY 163 . All of my clients know this and that is the reason why they have no problem paying a premium. You will get real-life experience that looks unbelievable on a resume and will put you in the front of the lines when employers are evaluating other candidates. Most recently my son accompanied me on a trip to a cedar oil production plan in Arkansas where he learned how cedar oil is produced from scrap cedar wood chips.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals WithumSmith+Brown What are some things that you learned on the job and not in the classroom? School prepares us all to be accountants. We spend a significant amount of time together. I have always found ways to bring my family and work life together. methods and philosophies that help you maintain a work/life balance and be a successful professional? Family is No. they get better. when I started here our firm was very small with no structured mentor program. Every year my son and I fly to the MLB All Star Game and Home Run Derby.

what would your dream career be now? This was my only career choice. With the increased regulation in our field.CMU.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals WithumSmith+Brown If your firm doesn’t have a formal mentoring program look for that person whom you admire and let him/her become your informal mentor. What other careers and life choices did you consider before deciding on a career in finance? If you were not in the field. He was an unbelievable inspiration. He brought real-life experiences into the classroom. In high school I had a CPA as my accounting teacher. increased awareness in the areas of fraud and risk management.com Inc. a high school or college student today who is focused on a career in the field of accounting will have no difficulty in having the comfort of job security even before they complete their senior year of study. I took three years of accounting in high school. Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. I made a decision to be a CPA when I was in high school. . increased need for compliance with a significant number of new standards.EDU) 164 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. either in public or private. Any predictions about the future of the industry? College graduates that plan to major in accounting over the next five to seven years will have no problem landing the position of their choice.

Bourke.vault.View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals WithumSmith+Brown “School prepares us all to be accountants. That is something that you learn to do on the job. the Vault Finance Job Board and more. to be a great accountant. message boards.com/finance for insider firm profiles. WithumSmith+Brown Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.CMU.” — James C. but it does not teach us how to take it to the next level. CAREER LIBRARY 165 . Shareholder and Director of Information Technology.EDU) Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www.

.CMU.com Inc.EDU) 166 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault.Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW.

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. . . . .106 PNC Financial Services Group. . . . . . . . . . . . .22 Clifton Gunderson LLP: Krista McMasters. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . LLC: Jeffrey Ferro. Nationwide Financial Network . . . . Inc. . . .com/finance for insider firm profiles. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .EDU) Peter J. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . the Vault Finance Job Board and more. . . . .: Tracy Whille. . . . . . . . . . . . . . LLP: David Scudder. . . . . . . . . . . . . . Price. . . . . . . .102 Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. . LLC: John T. . . Founding Partner . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .20 Citrin Cooperman & Company. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .82 McGladrey & Pullen. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .46 Eide Bailly LLP: David Stende. Vice Chairman of Investment Banking & Head of the North American Financial Sponsor Group . . . Capital Markets . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Winer & Evens LLP: Scott O'Sullivan. . National Managing Partner. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .: Hector J. . . . . . . .50 Ernst & Young Global Limited: Steve Campo. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Bank Manager . . . . . . . . . . . . . University Relations and Recruiting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .: Chet Helck. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .88 Moss Adams LLP: Christopher G. . Chief Operating Officer & Principal In-Charge. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . EVP & Chief Retail Officer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10 Beard Miller Company LLP: Lamar R. LLP: Joel Cooperman. Financial Advisory Services Business . . . . . . . . .36 Credit Suisse Group: Edward Yorke. . . . . . . . . . . Inc.S. . . . President & CEO of Legg Mason Investment Counsel . .vault. . . . . . .12 Berdon LLP: Scott T. . . . . . . . . . . . . . Tax Partner . . . . U. . . . Chief Marketing Officer. . . . . . . . . . Managing Director . . . . . Stoltzfus. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Inc. . . . . . . .30 Convergent Wealth Advisors. . . . . . . Philadelphia Region . . .42 Duff & Phelps Corporation: Daniel Peters. Managing Director . . . . . Chizek & Co.52 First Horizon National Corporation: Sarah Meyyerose. . . . . . . .40 Crowe. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Weinberg. . . . . . . .132 Visit the Vault Finance Career Channel at www. . . . . . . Crowe Chizek and Company LLC . . . . . . . . . . . Solomon Company: Andrew Quigley. . . .. . . . . . . . . Retail & Head of North American Retail Strategy .72 Legg Mason.: Thomas F. . . . . . . . . . . . Partner . . . . . . . .68 LarsonAllen LLP: Gordon Viere. . . .92 Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .: Joyce S. . . . . . . .: Erick Bronner. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . President & Chief Operating Officer . . . . .Alphabetical List of Finance Professionals FINANCE PROFESSIONALS Amper. . . . . . . . . . . . Partner . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . message boards. . . .6 Bear. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Exclusive Agency. . . . . . . . . . . . . P. . President of Agency Distribution . . . . . . . . . . . . PC: Bridget Day. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Scully. . . . . . . .: Linda Verba. . . .114 Raymond James Financial. . . . Managing Partner . . . . Co-Managing Principal . . . . . .120 Reznick Group. . CEO. . . . . . . . . . Houle. . . . . . . . . .96 Parente Randolph. . . . Stearns & Co. . . . . . . . . . . Inc. . . . . . . . . . .: Ramona Lopez. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .76 Margolin. . . . . . . . . . . . .98 Perella Weinberg Partners LP: Peter A. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Senior Managing Partner & Global Compliance Director . . . . . . . . Managing Partner . . . . . . . . Co-Chief Executive Officer . . . .60 Invesco Ltd. . . President & Chief Operations Officer . . . . . . . . . .84 Merrill Lynch & Co. . . . . . . . . . Inc. . . . Director . . . . . . . . . . Inc.56 Houlihan Lokey: Jeffrey I. .C. . . . . . Ditman. Officer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Politiziner & Mattia. . Vice President. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .64 KPMG LLP: Manny Fernandez. . . . . . .26 Commerce Bancorp. Principal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .124 Rothstein Kass: Steven Kass.128 RSM EquiCo. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .: Harry O'Mealia. . . . .: Andrew Schlossberg. Werbalowsky. Chairman & CEO . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .: Thomas Whitford. .110 Prudential Insurance Company of America: John Greene. . . . . . . . . . . . . . President of Emerging Businesses . LLC: Charles Allen. . . President. . . . . . . . . . . Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .CMU. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Schmidt. . . . . . Chief Practice Officer . . . . . . . . Chief Operating Officer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Segment Leader. . . . . . . . . . . . Chief Executive Officer . . . . . . Cuellar. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . CAREER LIBRARY 169 . . . .16 Capital One Services. . . Chief Administrative Officer . . . . . . . . . . . . .

EDU) 170 CAREER LIBRARY © 2008 Vault. .162 Customized for: Will (wmz@ANDREW. . . . . . . . Inc. . . Director. Caturano & Company Ltd. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Shareholder . . . . .: Catherine Maher. . . .: Gennaro DiBello. . . . . . . . . . Shareholder . . . .142 TD Securities Inc. LLC: Matthew Gooch. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . Executive Director of Operations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Vice Chair & Region Head. . .: Michael Forasté. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .: Brendan O'Halloran. LLC . . . . . . . .150 Vitale. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Assurance Services . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .158 WithumSmith+Brown: James C. . . . . . . . . . .140 SS&G Financial Services. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . .: Patricia Rubin. . . . . . . . . Bourke. . . . . .com Inc. . . . . . . . . Principal & Co-head of Special Situations . . . . . . . .146 Tofias PC: Michael Burns. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Inc. .154 William Blair & Co. . . . . . . . . . . . Shareholder and Director of Information Technology . . . . . . . . . . . . . .View from the Top: Advice from Finance Professionals Appendix Schneider Downs & Co. . . . . TD Securities USA. . . . . . . .CMU. . . . . . . . . . . . . . Tax Advisory Services Shareholder . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .136 Scottrade Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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