Director, AdCognos, Moldova
Where are you from?
I’m from Republic of Moldova, a small and young country with a multicultural environment in Central Eastern Europe, sandwiched between Romania and Ukraine.
Describe your educational background?
General Medicine (Doctor), Public Health, Finance and Insurance – this is the chronological list of the degrees and specialties you can find on my CV. Latterly, a series of professional certifications have been added, such as the ACCA Diploma in International Reporting in Russian, ACCA Qualification, Certified Business Analyst Professional (CBAP), Project Management Professional (PMP).
In 1998 I graduated from the Nicolae Testemitanu University of Medicine from Chisinau. My parents wanted me to be a doctor – it was a prestigious profession in Soviet times. In the early 90’s Moldova became a newly independent state, but there weren’t many career choices and following your parent’s advice was obvious.
Two years later I came to the decision that being a doctor wasn’t for me and that it was time to follow my dreams. So I plunged into the world of finance, accountancy and management by studying at the Finance Department at the Economic Academy in Moldova. This was a new chapter in my life.
Why finance and accountancy?
In 2000-2001 I joined a team of local traders on the US stock market. News, macroeconomic indicators, industry analysts, financial statements, graphs – it was all about performing fundamental and technical analysis before taking decisions and placing orders.
I remember a case of a pharma company that announced negative financial results for a quarter, but its share price was increasing very fast. We were frustrated – what happened? This was a trigger – I knew an accounting background would have helped me better understand financial statements and what’s behind the numbers.
After a few years, while studying for the ACCA’s F7 Financial Reporting paper I found out what actually happened and why the pharma company’s share prices had been increasing.
The notes to the financial statements showed the company had failed to meet all criteria to recognize expenses in developing a new drug as a research and development asset and therefore the expenses were shown as operational, which heavily impacted the financial results. However, the company announced that the new drug patent registration would be completed soon and that it expected huge revenues. These expectations boosted the share price.
For me accountancy was the entrance to the world of finance and business management.
How did you end up choosing ACCA?
The ACCA Qualification was the only internationally recognised certification available for Moldovan finance specialists and is widely known in my region. With a regional office in Bucharest providing support and promoting the certificate in Moldova, an examination centre opened in Chisinau in 2005-2006 and a computer based exams centre launched in 2008.
Many friends were working in Big 4 firms in Chisinau and I’d heard a lot from them about ACCA. I’d also read a lot of information on the ACCA website. I was really impressed by the multidimensionality of the qualification – papers covering accountancy, financial reporting, taxation, managerial accounting, audit, business law, HR, strategic and performance management.
How has ACCA supported your career?
It was the beginning of the change. The set of knowledge and skills you gain from studying for the ACCA Qualification dramatically improves the way you see a situation, it adds many dimensions to your vision. Business writing, drafting business reports, focus on core, time management and many other skills a trainee gets when studying for ACCA – growth you value as a professional. Furthermore, professional ethics increases the value you can provide to the community, clients and/or employers.
Did you encounter any obstacles while studying for the ACCA Qualification?
The dilemma was to find a balance between study, family and work. The ACCA Qualification was given the main priority as I expected it to generate opportunities for my career and a better future for my family. Of course, this meant less time and money on leisure and parties, and more dedication to studies. Early morning wakeups at 5am to study until 8 am became a daily routine two months before exam sessions. It was a win-win solution with less impact on the daily work and family parts of my life.
What advice would you give to others who might be considering a career in accountancy through ACCA?
Determination, a clear understanding of what they want to achieve in their lives and careers. Any qualification means an investment of money, effort and time, and you can get a pay-off only if it suits you and your goals. It’s difficult to make sacrifices without passion.
How did you land your current job?
In 2017 Edenred, a French group and worldwide leader in transactional solutions for companies, employees and merchants, decided to enter the Moldovan market and to set up operations for issuing meal vouchers. I was recommended by friends in Bucharest for the position of project manager as Edenred was looking for a project manager with a multidisciplinary background to cover the key issues related to the setup of a new business.
Having a unique set of professional certificates and more than 10 years’ experience it wasn’t difficult to find a win-win solution in terms of the offer – a higher than average remuneration for higher than average value.
Can you share a favourite inspirational quote?
When you stop learning, you stop leading – Ken Blanchard and Mark Miller, The Secret.
What piece of music best describes your work ethic?
Queen – We are the champions
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