JESSICA MACHT- Partner, Assurance, PwC, Panelist
In Financial Services industry, Jessica Macht is well-known for her skills and knowledge. However, we got a glimpse of Jessica as a mother, daughter, and career woman through our interview. Her career journey inspired us on reaching out to a new opportunity. And her lesson on prioritizing will help us to stay focus and gain more sleep!
1. You’re a partner at one of the world’s leading professional services companies. How do you prepare to take on the day?
I make it priority to start each day with some time for me…. Once the day really starts there typically is no stopping until bedtime! I either run, workout or attend a Pilates class each morning. Getting my sweat on helps me get focused and energized for the day ahead.
2. Every success story started somewhere. What was the turning point in your career that got you to where you are now?
I had two early experiences that really put me on the path to where I am now. The first happened shortly after I graduated from UBC with a degree in economics. I was working in marketing and advertising and I met a partner at Coopers & Lybrand. We spoke a lot about her work, what it meant to be a Chartered Accountant, the challenges and rewards of her career and partnership. I was intrigued. So much so, I returned to school and decided to become a Chartered Accountant.
The second experience happened in my third year at PwC. I was asked to attend our firms global leadership program (Genesis Park) in Washington, DC. This exceptional experience gave me the opportunity to work with our firm’s global leaders on strategic projects and even more importantly the opportunity and support to grow and develop as a leader. This experience exposed me to the incredible network at PwC and the world of opportunity available through PwC.
3. What are the challenges that taught you the most valuable lessons?
I have learned some of the greatest lessons from disappointment and adversity.
I have had opportunities or engagements that I desperately wanted and didn’t receive. In overcoming the disappointment I have found an incredible opportunity to reflect, refocus and redirect. I believe in reflection, feedback and debriefing failure. Through this process I have learned a lot about myself and resilience.
4. How did you get involved with Dress For Success® Vancouver?
A dear friend, Stephanie Orr, introduced me to Dress for Success® Vancouver in 2013.
5. What do you think defines success?
Success is a very personal concept. For me it’s not about achievement but about constant growth, joy in what you do and the opportunity to share your life with people you care about.
6. Who inspired your success story?
My mom. When I was a child she told me I could be anything I wanted to be as long as I worked hard and didn’t give up. I remember failing my orange level of swimming at Kits Pool one rainy Friday in July. Mum gave me a hug, acknowledged how I felt and signed me up for the orange level on Monday. Failure happens, quitting is not an option.
7. How does being a mother enhance your career?
Being a mother has helped me prioritize life and become a more balanced and effective leader. Before kids, if I needed to complete a project at work I would just work more. If I was pushing for a promotion or wanted to take on a new role I would say yes and sleep less. As a mother, my life is more balanced and I have had to find ways to prioritize and say no. I can’t create false capacity by working more and sleeping less. I have learned that I personally contribute better when I take care of myself, have balance and sleep!