GREAT TEAMS START WITH GREAT PEOPLE.
Meet Michael Lin
What is the most interesting thing that your teammates at MorganFranklin do not know about you?
I enjoy playing poker and have attended the World Series of Poker in Vegas, which is an annual event. One of my dreams is to win one of those events.
I find poker to be a fascinating game. In many ways, the game has attributes that are similar to or useful in business. Just as a hand can be played in many different ways, one can approach and handle business situations that are encountered in many different ways. Also the competitive nature, quantitative aspect, and the ability to read what the other players are thinking is helpful to what I do. As an accountant, a huge part of my job is quantitative. I find the competitive aspect and reading people’s minds helpful to business development as the proposal process is often a competition among different firms that everybody wants to “win.”
What is your role at MorganFranklin, and what do you do?
I’m a director in our Accounting and Transaction Services group in San Francisco. From a client-engagement service perspective, my focus is on IPO readiness, technical accounting, and financial reporting as well as helping clients address those areas. Then, on the other side, as one of the two directors in San Francisco, part of my responsibility is helping to grow the office and the West Coast practice. It’s a newer region for us, so I’m involved in business development and recruiting.
Please tell us about your professional background and what attracted you to pursuing a career at MorganFranklin?
I started my career at Ernst & Young in public accounting. I was in the industry for about eight years before embarking on my consulting/advisory experience roughly 15 years ago. I had been working with several local firms here over the past five years, and I missed it. MorganFranklin came to recruit me and told me about my current position and the great opportunity to make a mark and grow the firm’s practice in San Francisco. This was an opportunity to do something entrepreneurial, but do it within the framework or support of a firm that’s well-established and that’s been around for 21 years.
What would you say are the top five benefits to working at MorganFranklin?
One thing that I’ve come to realize is that the managing directors (and the management team as a whole) really care about employee input and value what people say. Everybody’s also really friendly to each other. There is good camaraderie.
Third, in San Francisco, because we’re a remote office, we are empowered to make decisions. Also, the compensation is attractive and competitive. And finally, I’m able to work around incredibly smart people who have a lot of experience.
What advice would you give to someone hoping to pursue a career at MorganFranklin?
At MorganFranklin, you have to own your career and make the most of your opportunity here. There are a lot of things that the firm allows people to get involved in, outside of doing client service work. You need to work well with a team, but also work well independently. You control your own career here, and MorganFranklin gives you the tools to succeed. What you do with those tools, and how you use your teammates to support you, goes a long way toward whether or not you succeed at MorganFranklin.
Outside of client engagements, what internal projects at MorganFranklin have you been most excited about, and why?
Having the opportunity to participate in media leadership opportunities (talking to media specifically about the IPO space) has been very cool. There is also the excitement of pursuing new clients. The whole process that goes around that and seeing the traction that we’re getting out here in the West Coast has been exciting.
What does an ideal day — including work and your personal life — look like for you?
I get up in the morning, spend a little time with my five-year-old daughter, and go to work. My work day really consists, on most days, of being in meetings as well as executing or doing client work. Much of it is meetings and driving around to different clients, so client engagement is a big part of it. Then, I leave work at a reasonable hour so that I can go home and spend time having dinner with my family.
After having traveled to roughly 20 counties, what is next on your travel bucket list, and why?
I would love to go to Spain. That’s somewhere that I’ve never been. I also want to travel to Peru and visit Machu Picchu.
We heard you had an opportunity to attend the Golden Globes in the past. What was your most memorable takeaway from this event?
Ernst & Young was the firm that counted the Golden Globe ballots at the time. I was part of that team and the partner invited the entire team to attend. It was memorable in the sense that I had an opportunity to see a lot of celebrities. I remember I was using the restroom, and Patrick Swayze was there! I was just kind of starstruck, and feeling fortunate that I was given the opportunity to attend.
In true Golden Globes spirit, what movie or TV character would best represent you?
Let’s say Wall Street. I enjoy investing in the stock market and when I graduated, I wanted to go into investment banking. I think the whole aspect of that movie (and Gordon Gekko) was very fascinating. I don’t know if that really encapsulates who I am, but it’s something that I do as a hobby.
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