Marianna Mooney, CPA
Partner: MayerMeinberg, LLP
Educational Background: BA, St. John’s University
Professional Associations/Memberships: AICPA, NYSSCPA, National Association of Professional Women
Hobbies: Spending time with my family, Beach
Click here to see the other honorees
of the 2012 "Most Powerful Women
in Accounting" awards.
Studies show that more women than ever are graduating with accounting degrees, but few are pursuing, or staying in, public practice careers. What do you think may be causing them to think public accounting careers are not as attractive as other careers?
The hours may not be very appealing, especially during tax season, but I believe that the long hours and hard work are necessary to learn the ins and outs of this profession. The hard work will pay off and lead to rewarding experiences down the line.
What advice would you give to these college students about the opportunities for women in the accounting profession?
There are so many opportunities available for women today. Many firms have mentor programs in place to help guide entry-level females in their careers. In addition, there are many organizations and associations that women can join to help find support and direction in the accounting profession or in general with their career. The National Association of Professional Women is a great resource for women who want to network and learn more about opportunities that they can take benefit from.
If you were asked as a consultant to give advice to firms, would you have any recommendations on things they could do to better retain and advance more qualified female staff?
When you have valuable staff that does quality work, it’s important to work with them to ensure that they have the environment to work to their highest level. In some circumstances, it’s not just flexible hours but can also be allowing them to work from home. Technological advances have made it possible to do work from almost anywhere.
Do you think that there is still a glass ceiling in accounting firm senior management and partner levels, or that the profession has moved to a mostly gender neutral state?
In my opinion, majority of the profession is a gender neutral state; however, there are still firms that don’t view women equally. I think that there will always be cases like that, but I would say that it is probably a fraction of the industry.
Do you think being a woman in the accounting profession has made career advancement more challenging than it might have been for a male in the same situation?
In the beginning of my career it was challenging, but finding the right firm was an important factor in avoiding this. I am lucky to be employed at a firm that has female partners and recognizes hard work above all else. If you work hard, are focused and dedicated, people will notice.
What solutions have you found successful in managing work-life integration. the balancing of your career with your personal, family and social life?
It’s important to have a sense of balance in order to accomplish goals personally and professionally. Setting priorities and anticipating what needs to be done helps me keep perspective and focus on what needs to be taken care of first.
How mobile are you regarding your work? How have mobile devices and apps impacted your productivity and work-life balance? (Spending less time in the office?)
I am very connected to my work and clients through technology. My clients can always reach me and I make it a priority to always check my emails even long after I have left the office. I don’t think I spend any less time in the office, but I am able to handle issues and respond quicker.
What single piece of technology could you absolutely not live without, and why?
My phone is with me at all times and helps connect me with my work life and personal life. I don’t think I would be as productive without it to help me stay updated on the go.
What is your favorite professional mobile app, and why?
‘Go to my PC’ is essential to me because it allows me to connect to my computer. I am able to use that app to access my work anywhere.
What do you like to do when you actually have free time without any obligations to work or family?
In my free time I enjoy relaxing at the beach with a good book.