When University of Chicago MBA grad and hands-on mom of four began thinking about re-entering the workforce after spending time at home with her children, academic and professional high achiever Helen knew exactly who could support her next endeavor. With a relationship spanning nearly 10 years, Katalyst Group already appreciated the non-negotiables for this seasoned accountant and project manager – an amazing work culture with ongoing opportunity to contribute and grow.

With a can-do, go-getter approach complemented by a relationship-oriented management style, it’s no surprise Helen believes job satisfaction is rooted in a positive work culture supported by strong leadership. Prioritizing Helen’s career goals and the right work environment, Katalyst Group thoroughly vetted roles before presenting the Manager opportunity.

The Client’s Challenges and Goals

Prior to Helen’s arrival, a privately held investor was in the process of acquiring the publicly held wholesale distributor. Even though positions were not eliminated, employees proactively pursued and accepted outside jobs as the acquisition was in progress. Post-acquisition, rebuilding and filling the Business Accounting function was a priority, including filling Helen’s current leadership role. Being aware of these challenges, Helen knew her role would offer the opportunity to make a difference.

The Deerfield, Illinois-based wholesale distributor has multiple national accounts, each with a set of requirements ranging from order-to-cash processes to billing to managing of rebates. The handling of national accounts requires expertise performing detailed financial analytics, ability to work cross-functionally as a colleague and supervisor, and managing daily maintenance and rebates.

Skill Set, Personalities, Job Description Align for Great Fit

Opportunity to add value in a role that utilizes accounting, finance, operations management, and leadership skills while embracing continuous learning was, and always will be, paramount to Helen. Likewise, the wholesale distributor seeks to fill its warehouse with more than just products, but also its offices—both remote and onsite—with a talented team who believes in their own contributions and embraces being in a work culture consisting of strong leadership, vision and work-life balance. “I’m enjoying working across the organization and being recognized as a go-to resource for problem solving,” says Helen.

Contributions in New Role

Serving in a leadership manager role and garnering the reputation of ‘I wish I had a Helen,’ re-entering the workforce full-time in a positive work culture is just where Helen wants to be. “Working with and for someone you enjoy is important along with the opportunity to grow and have exposure at different levels,” says Helen.

In her leadership role, Helen manages rebates and order-to-cash processes; reviews national accounts; supervises staff responsible for daily balancing; ensures legacy and SAP systems remain in sync; serves as a finance liaison; manages daily maintenance of projects; and will oversee a billing modernization project.

“I feel incredibly fortunate to be with an organization that allows me to use my diverse skillset to succeed in multiple areas, but that they also value my role as a parent and provide the flexibility for me to be there for my family,” says Helen.