A Day in the Life – Michelle, Human Resources Director

A Day in the Life at Calibre CPA Group-

Michelle Carthen, Human Resources Director

What is your title? Describe what you do.

My title is Human Resources Director.

I oversee the strategic direction and day-to-day activities of the human resources department. I work in partnership with the management committee and the HR team to execute policies, programs, and procedures to ensure that our systems align and help support making Calibre a great place to work!

Why did you get into the accounting/audit industry?

HR is my second career. I entered the human resources profession because I enjoy working with people at the grassroots level to create systematic paths of success. I enjoy the process of building programs and working with others to help organizations and the employees within those organizations to be their best selves!

What are three things you do every day? Do you have any morning “rituals”?

Three things I do every day:

  • Generate and respond to LOTS of emails and phone calls.
  • I create and run reports to gather information and determine ‘what’s next’ with our programs.
  • I meet with members of the HR team and other members of the firm to support their efforts and move any obstacles to support us doing our best work.

My morning ritual is a nice hot cup of coffee with meditation and prayer to get my day going. I take a few moments to salute the suns rays while reading an article or going through email.

What are the most challenging and rewarding parts of your job?

Working with people and working with people are the most challenging and rewarding parts of my job. No two days are alike! Each one of us is unique and bring to the table our unique historical perspective on things. Facilitating solutions so that ‘everybody wins’ gives me a sense of promoting a positive work culture where employees feel valued and want to come to work at Calibre. It is rewarding that I am a trusted advisor.

What advice would you give to someone looking to pursue a role like yours? Are there specific character traits or skills/certifications they should possess?

I would say always stay objective and focused on the Big Picture. Never take anything personally. If it ever becomes personal – take a walk!

In the director role, education across all HR disciplines is critical. Key traits needed for success in this role are calm, wisdom, patience, strong interpersonal skills, and high emotional intelligence. Working in this role is about maintaining balance and safeguarding the organization – the owners, managers, supervisors, employees, as well as the physical assets of the Firm.

What makes Calibre CPA Group different than your previous workplaces? What do you like best about Calibre?

I like that the office is located at a metro stop and that there are many places within walking distance to exercise and enjoy a quiet working lunch or breakfast.

What I like best is the trust that has been established between myself, my leadership, my team, and employees in the firm. In my role, I like that I have some autonomy to help guide the direction of the HR function as we try to make Calibre a great place to work!


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