Campus Blog: Me, Deloitte and personal growth
By Dhruv Agarwal
Staff Accountant I, Assurance & Advisory | Winter 2014 Co-op
During my first two years of university, I only had one goal in mind: get good grades and have a great time at school. It didn’t matter how I achieved those grades – I just wanted to find the shortest and easiest way out.
Here’s an example: we all have that one individual in our class who takes notes throughout the entire lecture, giving his undivided attention to the professor. I was never that individual and could never be. I was the guy who would take that individual’s help and ace all my exams.
Deloitte has taught me that by doing what I did in the past, I can get good grades but what I am missing out on was one of the most important things ever - knowledge. Knowledge is power and as cheesy as that may sound, there is no denying it.
After my first co-op term with Deloitte, I realized that I had wasted a considerable portion of my time in university because I was striving to get the best grades possible. I would learn and memorize concepts a few days ahead of the exams, and then I would forget them. When I went back to school for third year, I decided that instead of taking the easy electives to score a high grade (aka “bird courses”), I would take the electives that I have an interest in, such as accounting applied to capital markets and financial math. Not only did I really enjoy my courses, but I scored the highest GPA in all of my three years!
There is a quote from a senior manager that I don’t think I will ever forget and I would like to share it here today. He said, “I stay in the office till 9pm because I love what I do and I don’t mind doing this for the rest of my life. If this is not your passion, stop doing it and you can thank me later.” People you meet in your life can shape your thinking. In my case, people at Deloitte have helped me re-define my thinking as well as my personality.
Deloitte has also taught me to be calm and patient, no matter how stressful the situation might be. During my first co-op term, I had to do an inventory count at a client site outside the GTA. (Side note: Inventory counts are typically done by Staff/ Senior accountants where a physical count of the client’s inventory is performed to test the existence of the inventory). This was my second inventory count, but I made a small mistake. As a newbie, I thought I had committed a huge blunder and I was very nervous and uncomfortable about the entire situation. I ended up sending multiple emails to the manager asking him what to do. He called me up right away and completely surprised me by telling me to relax and go have lunch. He hung up after that. I did what he said and surprisingly enough, I came up with a solution during my lunch. On that day, I learned that there is no problem big enough to stress about. It has always worked out in the past and it always will, as long as we maintain a clear and calm head.
Deloitte is one of the very few employers out there that allows a 19-year-old (the age I started at Deloitte) to independently interact with successful individuals such as Controllers, CFOs, and CEOs who are running multi-million dollar companies. Deloitte contributed towards the development of my communication skills in such a way that might not have been possible at any other place.
To conclude, Deloitte helped me acquire these extremely important skills and contributed towards turning a university student into a matured working professional. Deloitte is like a pool of knowledge, every single person in the firm is waiting to give away a part of his knowledge for free. It’s your job to communicate with them, learn from them and help turn this four-month internship into a life-long experience that you will never forget.
Dhruv is a 4th year student at Wilfred Laurier University majoring in Accounting.