MGHQ unicorn profiles: our senior financial accountant| April 7, 2017
Name: Kate Marten
Title at Missguided: Senior Financial Accountant
Been at Missguided for: 3 years in August ’17
About me: I have been known to go by the name of Kathy Woo, whether that’s due to my penchant for a fruity cocktail of an evening or my love for a shoe (it rhymes ??), but nonetheless, I’d like to think that I’m helping to break the stereotype of an accountant. We work damned hard in Finance but we have a lot of fun doing it.
During my time at MG, I have dipped my toe into all sorts of different areas, including responsibility for the management accounts, business process, tax & VAT and the audit & financial statements. I’m now currently in the process of leading a major system implementation from a Finance perspective. I’ve learnt a huge amount and continue to keep doing so.
I’ll never stop embracing my inner nerd and love for numbers, and being able to combine this with my utter love for fashion is a total winner.
|EDUCATION & DEGREE|
2:1 in Psychology (of all things!) at Sheffield University
Accredited Chartered Accountant (ACA), trained with PwC
|FIRST JOB OUT OF UNI||I actually trained as a Chartered Accountant in Practice at PricewaterhouseCoopers, and that was my first job out of uni. In all honesty, I kind of fell into the idea of accountancy by accident. I figured I’d always been analytical and good at maths (how stereotypical), so thought I’d apply for a 3 year training contract, get my ACA qualification, work for a few years as an accountant and then go back to my Psychology roots. Sounds easy right? It didn’t quite work that way – once I’d studied and worked (harder than ever before in my life) for my qualification, I realised it wasn’t something that I wanted to leave behind. I spent 6 amazing years at PwC as an auditor, working with small private companies and huge PLC’s, and travelling all over the place (mostly between Stoke and Blackpool let’s face it, though I did wangle the odd more glamourous trip to New York). The job gave me a brilliant underlying knowledge of accounting and business, and when I landed the audit for MG, I decided it was the perfect opportunity to blend my love for sums with my love for shoes! I made the move from Practice into Industry and have been at Missguided ever since.|
|BEST PIECE OF ADVICE|
Explore all of the different routes into Finance – there’s so many options and qualifications available to you. Our finance team has a real mixture of ages, experience and backgrounds; some of our team at MG joined straight out of school and some of them trained in practice having done a completely unrelated degree at University (like me!). You don’t need to have a whole host of experience behind you to begin in Finance – so long as you have the aptitude to learn, we’ll be interested in bringing you on board.
Be prepared to work hard; be prepared to work your butt off!
If you want to progress in Finance, you’re going to need to train for a qualification (ACA, CIMA, ACCA, the list goes on….). There will be blood, sweat and tears when studying for your exams, but trust me…it’s 110% worth the pain. There is nothing more satisfying than knowing that you have a qualification at the end of it that could pretty much take you anywhere in the world and into all sorts of different roles. Variety is one of the beauties of my job – believe it or not, no two days are the same, and I’m constantly find new challenges.
Make sure you can make a good cuppa – us Finance bods get through at least a box of PG a week! It’s a completely necessary skill to have under your belt!
|TOP CV & COVER LETTER TIP|
Keep your CV concise and relevant; absolutely don’t exceed 2 pages as the person reading it will lose interest and you don’t want yours to be the one making them yawn.
Don’t tell any porkies; it’s easy enough to uncover any untruths and this will only trip you up further down the line. Make sure your social media isn’t going to get you in any trouble either; even us Finance geeks will have a little snoop at you on LinkedIn/Facebook/etc.
|MOST VALUABLE WORK EXPERIENCE FOR SOCIAL||There’s loads of different ways in which you can get some experience in Finance; this could be as simple as getting a temporary job to help with the filing (stacks of paper are a given in any Finance office) or doing an internship at an accounting firm or company in industry. Go for it…show ambition and drive. Ask questions, make notes. Don’t forget your calculator!|
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