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Congratulations to our new Managers and Senior Associates

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Rödl & Partner is excited to announce our Senior Associate and Manager promotions for 2021! We are so proud of our team and all their hard work—especially with the challenges offered in 2020. These colleagues have displayed outstanding leadership qualities while never failing to go the extra mile.


What does it take to be a Manager and Senior Associate at Rödl & Partner? We asked our new Managers and Senior Associates to share their experience and insights from their career:


Which of the firm's core values do you associate with the most, and why? (ACHIEVE: Accountability, Competence, Humility, Integrity, Efficiency, Veracity and Excellence)


Miriam Kroll: Accountability. A big part of our firm in the U.S. is to support clients, both individuals, and entities, who do not have any background in U.S. taxation and accounting. In my day-to-day work, I meet clients at their level of knowledge and help them understand the U.S. tax system with all its special rules. Lots of it differs from Germany, and many clients also have an added language barrier. Clients trust us to give accurate advice and make sure they meet their U.S. compliance. Therefore, accountability for our work is very important.


Nick Orellana: Integrity. I believe that how you do one thing is how you do everything. I strive to be consistent in both my personal life and professional life with maintaining integrity. It is ever so important as a professional, especially in growing Rödl & Partner and upholding the firm's reputation.


What is your biggest success story in your department at Rödl & Partner?


Harris Neal: A client with the Birmingham office contacted us for a consulting engagement to advise them on how to improve their inventory costing method. What they really wanted was a rebuild of their inventory costing from the ground up. I started with a blank Excel document and a couple of phone calls with the client, then about two weeks later, I was presenting the costing file I built to the Italian parent company. The feeling of genuine gratitude that I got from the client's management is easily one of the prime points of my career.


Ben Mical: The biggest success story I have experienced would be the development of the Rödl & Partner Chicago tax department. It has been a rewarding experience to contribute my efforts to grow our dedicated tax department in Chicago. I strongly believe that the continued growth of the Chicago tax department will not only be a major component to future success in my career but also to the firm.


What challenges do you expect in a Manager or Senior Associate role?


William Gryder: The biggest challenge I expect to face will be the balance of managing the needs of our team vs. managing the needs of the client. The more involved you become with a client, the more of a resource you become to them. This means more time spent discussing items of importance with the client who is looking to you for advice. At the same time, I need to ensure that our team members are learning what they need to get along the way so they can become that first resource to a client as well.


Tetiana Fedoruk: I will have to manage projects that require thinking holistically, identifying & resolving accounting issues, and delivering against tight deadlines while effectively delegating tasks. I believe I will have a greater responsibility to teach and guide others on the team.


Lillia Vivcharuk: With a Senior Associate role, more challenges and responsibilities will come my way. I need to stay focused under pressure when working long hours or under a tight deadline.


How do you feel like your experience at Rödl & Partner has prepared you for a Manager or Senior Associate position?


Anne Doyle: At Rödl & Partner, I have been given the opportunity to find my own little niche within the firm and run with it. I had a background in individual tax before coming to Rödl & Partner’s Chicago office, and upon joining Rödl & Partner, I expressed significant interest in this area. I have been not only supported but encouraged to immerse myself in the 1040 practice and work with the other team members to grow & improve the process on a year-over-year basis. It is a fantastic and motivating feeling to know you have the support and encouragement of your firm and peers.


Stephen Flock: The ability to work across business areas as well as cross-office has provided me with a wide variety of perspective that I feel is not common today. Because of this unique exposure, Rödl & Partner has not just prepared me to lead engagement teams but moreover, I feel that I am prepared to manage most aspects of the overall client relationship, develop staff, and provide unique insight from my diverse experiences.


Jake Appelbaum: Everyone I have worked with has been crucial in preparing me for this next step of my career. I feel like everyone truly cares about each other’s development—fostering an environment of collaboration and learning. Everyone is always more than happy to discuss questions or topics and provide feedback. This has allowed me to learn an immense amount and gain various perspectives from my engagement team members in the past year.


What advice do you have for new staff accountants at the firm?


Christiane Balkcom: Don't wait for tasks to be assigned to you. Seek them! Spend time getting to know your client—their business, industry, and people.


Ben Mical: I encourage new staff accountants to remember to lean on others for help when you need it. The public accounting industry notoriously has a steep learning curve, and the industry will consistently challenge you during your progression in your career. In my experience, Rödl & Partner is filled with extremely talented folks that are always willing to help and truly want to see you succeed.


Nick Orellana: Embrace new challenges! There really is nothing easy about escaping your comfort zone, but I promise that the learning opportunities and satisfaction that these challenges present will make you not only a valuable resource to colleagues but also a successful professional.


Miriam Kroll: Never be shy to ask questions and always listen, even if you have the feeling that you do not understand anything. I still look back at my first couple of months as a full-time staff accountant and remember feeling completely lost in our weekly team meeting—because of the English tax language and on the other hand due to not having a U.S. accounting degree. Now, I am doing the things we discussed during those meetings in my daily work, and although I am still asking questions, it is amazing how far you can come in only two years. So, do not become frustrated, just keep on listening.


Tetiana Fedoruk: Rödl & Partner is a great place to build a career. Set yourself challenging goals and do not let setbacks demotivate you. Develop your professional skepticism and try to learn something new every day. Be a team player.


What are your goals for your first year as a Manager or Senior Associate?


Christiane Balkcom: I am looking forward to helping navigate my clients and staff through the challenges during the ongoing pandemic.


Anne Doyle: In my first year as manager, I hope to build on the client relationships I have established and continue to act as a reliable resource to not only our clients for their tax needs but also as a resource for our firm and someone staff can reach out to for questions or guidance.


Harris Neal: I have been lucky to work with managers and partners who have always been available to me to answer questions. My goal is to provide the same level of availability to my co-workers that was afforded to me, as any successes I have had or will have in the future are because someone took the time out of their busy schedule to sit with me and answer my questions.


published December 2020

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