Adam Rifai is an accounting and business analyst / associate consultant with Harbinger SCR. Adam works both internally, dealing with the financial aspects of Harbinger, and is currently learning the ropes of what it takes to be a consultant.
Define what a Harbinger is?
What I’ve learned about Harbingers is that they are pioneers of change. What that means to me, is that they are leaders of improvement. The only reason to instill change is to seek improvement or new perspectives which would hopefully lead to improvement. And, to be a pioneer in this, you become the one that others will follow. To be a good harbinger, would mean to be someone who ensures that the individuals you are guiding through change and learning are fully optimizing their experience.
What makes you most excited about joining the team?
I am most excited to be a part of a team that is growing, because I am in the same stage of my career, where I want to learn and grow as much as I can. I think our values align nicely, and you can’t beat the vibrant downtown Toronto location.
Tell us something most people don’t know about Finance & Accounting.
It’s actually fun. Numbers have this prejudice of being boring and complex. But, if you know what you’re doing, you’ll realize there is actually so much you can learn about a company or industry solely based on their numbers. Once you start learning how to read trends, forecasting opens a whole new outlook on everything around you including maintaining your own personal finances.
What do you love the most about what you do?
I really enjoy the freedom I have, compared to if I was working for a large firm with concrete structures. This freedom allows me to do my job in an enjoyable fashion at my own pace; and the flat organization structure gives me the ability to express my ideas with the confidence that they will be heard and acknowledged.
As a recent graduate, do you have any tips or advice on learning? How do you personally learn?
Be optimistic and open to taking on new challenges and experiences. Personally, I learn by doing, so I learn a lot by trying new things and taking on different perspectives. You have to do this with the mindset that you’re either going to succeed or fail. If you succeed then good job, move on to the next task. But, more importantly, if you fail, then even better. Learn from your failures; because if you don’t, you will find yourself in the same spot. In order to grow you need to be proactive and adaptive towards improving from your past failures.
How will you apply what you know from Finance and what you’ve learned from the team so far, into Consulting?
One of the most important things I’ve learned in Finance is to double check your work and understand the story behind each number. You cannot present financial data to others without knowing the background of each number, and you must be prepared to answer any and all questions. I feel like this will be very helpful in my transition to consulting, because when dealing with clients you absolutely need to know what you are talking about. As a consultant, you become the one that clients go to for their questions, so you need to be three steps ahead in your preparation.
If you could describe yourself with one word, what would it be?
Poise. I try to make sure I keep my stress down, and not to overreact when things go wrong. By maintaining my composure and making logical rather than emotional decisions I am always confident any problem can be solved.
Now that you’re a Harbinger, what are your predictions for the Raptors this year?
The same as it was at the beginning of the year, winning it all, and Kawhi Leonard is re-signing!
Adam Rifai Accounting & Business Analyst / Associate Consultant Toronto