The Texas Resource for Careers in Accounting


Steve Palomino

079: From Law Enforcement, to Accounting, to Consulting with Steve Palomino!

Have you ever considered what law enforcement and accounting have in common?  Steve Palomino has! In this podcast, Steve points out the similarities which help us to understand why the FBI and other law enforcement organizations want to hire accountants – and it’s not the math! In this episode of Life In Accounting: The Where Accountants Go podcast, Steve Palomino, shares what these two fields have in common, including technology and ideas for breaking into consulting. Transitions After retiring from police work, Steve began working as a staff accountant. In addition to accounting tasks, Steve helped to transition tasks from paper to technology. For Steve, this seemingly small improvement resonated with him. He realized that using and understanding technology would set him apart from others by giving him an additional (and attractive) skill set. From there, Steve transitioned to working with a large communication firm. His career continued progressing through working for two of the big four national accounting firms as well. Consulting Steve then decided to begin consulting. He wrote his business plan and got buy-in from his most important partner… his wife. He enjoys consulting because it is a more project-based line of work, and you get to see projects through to their successful completion. Additionally, you get to meet and work with many diverse people. Points to Consider As you consider career options, there is always the route of working for large organizations. With these, you may find security, and for some you may find it too structured. Project work can be interesting, but in cases where the organization has not selected appropriate technology it can be challenging. Self-employment can be fulfilling as well, but it can also bring uncertainty. It is important that you have very strong skills and knowledge in the industry that you want to support.  All career paths have unique advantages.  It’s important to figure out along the way what works best for your own specific needs.  Steve’s consulting business allows him to manage multiple simultaneous projects, which he really enjoys – he likes variety! Other podcasts referenced in this podcast: Donny Shimamoto, CPA – Tech, BI, AI and Public Speaking! To listen in on this interview with Steve Palomino, please use the player below:

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Neha Patel

078: Creating Cultures that Really Work – Neha Patel, Partner at Weaver

In this episode of Life In Accounting: The Where Accountants Go podcast, Neha Patel, CPA, CISA shares not only how she made partner at Weaver, but how she has led the Women’s Initiative for the entire firm that has (along with the Culture Committee) created a culture that thinks and speaks candidly about ways to create an amazing workplace. Versatility and Transferability Neha’s background includes technology audit. Being an Austin Longhorn (University of Texas graduate), the trend at the time was MIS. Neha pursued this as her minor, and she became a rarity because she was an accounting major with a technology background. Neha is a firm advocate in sharing with others the versatility that comes with a degree in Accounting because of the incredibly transferable skills that accompany it.  Her diverse background allowed her to join Weaver as a manager, which is unusual given that Weaver generally grows their management team from within. She has been with Weaver now for almost a decade. Traits of Supportive Teams One of the many things that Neha enjoys about her work at Weaver is the opportunity to work within a supportive culture. Neha has noted that a supportive team begins with you and your ability to accurately know yourself. You must know what you need to be to perform at your best. This also includes recognizing when you are stressed and how to diffuse your own stress effectively. Supportive teams include intuitive, curious, and transparent leaders who know how to lead conversations, even when they are sensitive or require courage on one or both parties to openly share information. As a leader, surround yourself with the right people and make sure it is a diverse group. A supportive leader can help to establish a transition plan when work and other items may require a longer, or even an indefinite, transition. Naturally transitioning assignments is most effective when the other team members can pick up work from each other, as needed, and then effectively transfer work back also as needed. Women’s Initiative Another role that Neha fills at Weaver is the Chair of the Inspire Program. Weaver noticed about five or six years ago that women start leaving accounting around the manager ranks, and Weaver wanted to learn more about what they could do to retain women. After all, women enter the field at a 50/50 ratio with men. This was very important to Weaver’s culture as well as the profession in general. Make sure to check out the Weaver Inspire video out to learn more! It is fascinating, and as the name indicates, truly inspiring! Other podcasts referenced in this podcast: Sarah Elliott, CPA, ACC – Daring to Dream To listen in on this interview with Neha Patel, please use the player below:

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