Get to know Mali
Mali’s journey at Mattamy started in 2017 as a Senior Financial Analyst. Mali saw rapid career growth and became the Manager of Financial Reporting and then a Senior Manager of Operations Finance before leaving the company to travel the world in 2021! She returned in 2022 as a Director of Finance, where today, she oversees and manages the financial activities of our GTA Urban Division.
What does a typical morning at work look like for you?
I start my day early and usually read a news flash called CFO Brew which focuses on Corporate Finance related business updates. After that, I meditate for a few minutes so that I can bring the right mindset to my workday.
Next, I go through all the new emails I receive and prioritize which ones need an immediate response that day and which can wait until later in the week. This keeps me on top of requests from my team, the Corporate Office and operational partners throughout the Division.
My meetings usually start for the day right at 9:00am. I prepare for important discussions in advance, so I have a point of view to offer guidance and advice when needed. I also do this to ensure the meetings are productive, we're staying on topic and coming away with an action plan to address the financial issues under discussion.
I'm usually in meetings throughout the day where we discuss matters ranging from strategic decision-making around project budgets to improving financial processes and setting team goals to deliver results for the year. I meet with specific stakeholders to give or receive updates if there are any special projects I'm working on.
What drew you to a career in finance?
There are a lot of chartered professional accountants in my immediate family, and they always told me a career in finance is the best-kept secret. As a kid, I didn’t understand what they meant, but when I was in grade 11, I took my first accounting course and never looked back. I think what many people don’t appreciate about finance is how creative it can be. We say fun with numbers for a reason!
How has your career evolved at Mattamy and what actions did you take to get you to where you are today?
I started at Mattamy as a Senior Financial Analyst at our corporate office in 2017. Fast forward five years, and I've held four roles in five different Divisions. What helped me get to where I am today is consistently producing high-quality work, no matter how big or small the task is. Being somebody my peers and supervisors could count on to deliver accurate results on time helped me earn a reputation at Mattamy as a team player who could be a trusted financial business partner. This set me up to take on more responsibility and advance my career as opportunities arise.
You left Mattamy for six months to travel. What is it about Mattamy’s culture that made you return?
I returned to Mattamy after travelling for six months because of the people and the opportunities to have a great career. I have an incredible team and work alongside talented and hard-working individuals I'm lucky enough to call my friends. Mattamy is a fast-paced organization which I love because it means I get many opportunities I wouldn't have at other companies. I like that I can come to work and suggest a new idea, get the buy-in I need from my supervisor and other department leaders, and then implement it. Few organizations are as receptive to change as Mattamy, which excites me most about my career here.
What characteristics does someone need to be successful at Mattamy?
To be successful at Mattamy, you need to be a go-getter and seize opportunities as they come. Having the right attitude about change, wanting to try new things, and scanning the horizon for new opportunities are all traits that help you succeed at Mattamy. As I mentioned earlier, Mattamy is a fast-moving organization, and there’s a lot of room to put your hand up and try new things that are outside the scope of your current job description or responsibility.
What advice would you give to someone looking to start a career in finance?
Take the time to learn the foundational skills early in your career, even if it isn’t the most exciting work you’ll do. These skills will eventually become second nature, setting you up for success later in your career. Finance is one of the most collaborative and cross-functional roles at most companies. Being empathetic, easy to work with, and someone who can explain finance concepts easily are traits that will take you far in this career path!
What’s been the most exciting challenge you’ve worked on at Mattamy?
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