Thriving in public accounting: Young leader Robby Chiste
From the time he was a freshman with his sights set on the accounting profession, Robert Chiste has made it a point to be involved in, well, just about everything. Today, as assurance services manager II at Kaufman Rossin (the Miami-based professional services firm he has worked at since 2016), Chiste represents both the University of Miami and his firm in multiple roles.
At the University of Miami, Chiste is a member of the University’s Young Alumni Leaders Council and the Department of Accounting’s Young Leaders Group. He also serves as a liaison to the Accounting Advisory Council. “Robby excels at what he does and is very personable, bringing added energy to the room in our meetings,” says Advisory Council and UM Citizens Board member Kenneth Dubow, who is entrepreneurial services principal at Kaufman Rossin. He adds of Chiste, “He lives and breathes orange and green!”
We caught up with Chiste for an interview on his career and life as an alum.
What do you enjoy about public accounting?
It’s very rare for any one week to feel like another week. It’s very unpredictable. I’ve enjoyed learning about a lot of different industries without having to work full time in a particularindustry. It’s neat to start the day thinking about one industry and end the day thinking about another, whether it’s real estate, manufacturing, retail – even an online entertainment company.
You started your career with Deloitte, then joined Kaufman Rossin (KR) in 2016. You’ve been in assurance with KR since you joined the company, and you’ve risen steadily through positions. What do you think has been the key to career success for you?
Networking, hard work and trying to bring the best version of myself every day. Trying to get 1% better every day and take progress one step at a time. I’ve learned to keep an open mind and not assume everything is going to go perfectly. I’ve also learned to be adaptable to different situations.
Tell us about your involvement with the University of Miami community.
Whenever Kaufman Rossin has anything to do with UM, I’m there. I recently joined the Young Alumni Leaders Council, and we circulate ideas on how to keep our young alumni engaged at the university. I’m also in the Accounting Young Leaders Group and attend the Accounting Advisory Council meetings to create a link between our younger group in the accounting department and the Advisory Council. I also have good relationships with the professors, and they call me to be a guest speaker. I go to the games and live in Coral Gables, so I’m always around. It’s a lot of fun! I want to give back to the UM accounting department as much as possible. The UM community has always been important to me, and I plan to carry that on through the rest of my career.
As someone who works hard to recruit talent to Kaufman Rossin, what are some of the challenges in recruiting and retaining young professionals in the field today?
Recruiting top talent is very hard for just about everybody right now. Our firm is always ranked as one of the best places to work. We make it a point to keep employees happy. We show people we have very talented, intelligent individuals who are well rounded and doing a great job for our clients – but also having a good time doing it.The demand for accounting majors is extremely high. It’s an important major where you can really make a difference. Auditing helps people make appropriate decisions when they otherwise might not do so, and public accounting is also a great starting point for a career in many industries.
Read the full article on Accounting Miami.