Catherine Praet

Catherine is a staff accountant in the Small and Mid-sized Entities (SME) department. Catherine completed her education at Wayne State University, receiving a Bachelor’s of Science in Business Administration and a Master’s of Science in Accounting. Catherine completed two internships at C&M before joining the firm full time in January 2015.

What does a typical day look like for you?

Is there ever a typical day in public accounting? There are many days that I walk into work having an idea of what my day might look like and walk out with a completely different story. Public accounting, and C&M’s SME department in particular, offers so much variety in your daily tasks. SME is a more full-service department than just tax or audit alone, providing so much variety in the type of work and type of clients you work with. In a typical day, I could be working on financial statements for one client, consulting work for another, and tax work for a third.

What is the most meaningful part of your job?

As a very extroverted individual, the most meaningful part of my job is the relationships that I have built. The people at C&M, and particularly the SME team, are truly one of a kind. Not only have I learned an immense amount from my team, we have had so much fun along the way. Even as a staff accountant, I have the opportunity to build other relationships, with clients, through recruiting, and through other networking events.

What do you consider the greatest success so far in your public accounting career?

My greatest success has come from my ability to connect with people, no matter if they are clients, members of the community or other firm staff. I always give every new interaction as much of myself as possible because I’ve always believed I could be the best at what I do, but if no one likes me as a person, I’ll never get the opportunity to share those skills with anyone.

What advice would you give to someone just starting out their career?

Learn as much as you can from as many people as possible. Although I love being a part of the SME team, there is so much knowledge in this firm and industry as a whole! Take the time to learn and develop relationships with a wide variety of people. This will make you so much more of a well-rounded accountant and will serve you well in your career.