The Scoop on FEWnet     

"Statistics are a lot like bikinis. What they reveal is important but what they
  hide is vital."

 - W.C. Fields            

Spring is always a special time for us because it's the time of year when FEWnet women celebrate our industry and the connections that we've made through our unique community. This year's event was especially action packed -- a compelling keynote speaker, an energetic fashion show, and the sparkle of jewels. Of course, the fine bubbly selections and music were also widely appreciated.

We received some great feedback, with plenty of praise for this year's speaker, Robyn Waters. A national speaker, author, and former VP of Trend, Design, and Product Development at Target, many of Robyn's messages resonated with our group and so we thought we'd share a few of the items she discussed that evening.

Read on!

"Trends are indicators that point to what's going on in the hearts and minds of consumers. And there's a big difference between a trend tracker and what I call a Trendmaster. A trend tracker looks at the signs to help his or her business stay up to the minute. A Trendmaster, however, uses the trend information to determine where that minute is going. Trendmasters start out by observing a trend, but then they translate that trend information into a direction that makes sense for their companies and their customers.

" want to spot the next big thing? Chances are you've already seen it. What you need to do is let yourself recognize it. Put your antennae out, your periscope up, your scanner on high, and tune in to the little things, the trivial nuances, and the irrelevant data that everyone else misses. On its own, each tidbit is meaningless; strung together, they are ahas waiting to be noticed."

Reprinted with permission by the author from: "The Trendmaster's Guide," by Robyn Waters. For more information about Robyn and how to order a copy of her book, go to


We are currently looking at forming a monthly lunch networking group in the North Metro. Please let us know if you or a colleague are interested in joining in the fun by dropping us a note or calling Dori at 952-345-4143.

The more the merrier, we always say!



Meet your fellow FEWnet member

"The essential conditions of everything you do must be choice, love, passion."

- Nadia Boulanger   

Carolee Lindsey is a Partner with Ocel, Heimer & Associates, Ltd., a full service CPA firm with a niche in construction and privately owned businesses. Located in the upper heavens of the IDS Tower in Downtown Minneapolis, Carolee enjoys her work and is passionate about her company's familial culture and focus on helping clients succeed in all areas of their lives.

A Minot State University alumnus, Carolee went on to receive her Master of Accountancy from the University of North Dakota. She joined Arthur Andersen right out of graduate school, where she worked in audit for 10 years before moving to Ernst & Young. She later became the VP of Finance for arctic explorer Ann Bancroft's company and credits this time as being "one of the most amazing opportunities" of her life.

Currently, Carolee is a Partner focusing on audit, accounting, and tax services for privately owned companies. In the heat of the busy season, we were thrilled to have the opportunity to sit down and hear more about the challenges and joys of working for a smaller public accounting firm, diving the Great Barrier Reef, and plotting her return to the golf course.

Click to learn more


Table Talk     

Here's what FEWnet members are saying

  • Wanted: Technically strong accountants with good Excel skills. More than ever, we are feeling the crunch of finding qualified accounting candidates to fill our open positions. Some of us have been sharing ways to test for solid software skills and many of us have taken recruiting into our own hands by utilizing our FEWnet small groups. In fact, several FEWnet small group members have been able to fill open staff accounting roles out of referrals that come from our monthly lunches. Something to think about next time you are wondering if you can juggle a small group commitment or if you can make that next lunch meeting.

  • Outsourcing: The good, the bad, and the ugly. Companies, large and small, continue to see outsourcing as a valuable tool for getting products to market quickly; ramping up IT services on an as needed basis; and taking on new, more complex projects without significantly increasing expenses. These rewards come with their fair share of challenges, including navigating time zones, cost issues, and education or language gaps. General consensus is that it is one thing to outsource AP, but when you get into outsourcing "the core" there can be some serious ramifications around processes, quality, and job security (just to name a few). Some feel that there will be a boomerang effect and companies will start moving these things back to the U.S. when time and money become a factor.

  • MBA programs. Are we getting enough bang for our buck? Several FEWnet members have their MBA or are in the process of completing their program. Motivation behind the MBA has been a popular topic of discussion. Some are in it for the extended learning, whereas others are in it for the credentials and career opportunities that an MBA may bring. Key topics of discussion have also included the value differential between having a finance focus or expanding one's skill base into other areas (such as marketing). Motivation and value become even more important factors as companies continue to offer tuition reimbursement and employees look at ways to validate their choice to return to school.


Perm Placement Network     

The following positions are open in the Twin Cities.

The Perm Placement Network

The Perm Placement Network by Certes connects financial professionals with permanent positions in the Twin Cities.

Hear about the jobs you want.

Maintain the confidentiality you need.

We are currently working with clients to find qualified candidates for the following positions:

Senior Accountant. Are you ready for the greatest challenge of your career to date? A team player with a "roll up your sleeves" work ethic, this role's primary responsibility is to provide process improvement support in the monthly close cycle. The ideal candidate will be a technically strong accounting professional with experience in the monthly closing cycle process and external auditor relations. Salary range of $65K - $80K. Job #284.

Tax Manager. Play an integral part in the financial success of a global market leader! The successful candidate will manage and be a part of a team that is responsible for a variety of income tax compliance and planning projects, including preparing federal, state, and local income tax returns; assisting in managing federal income tax audits; proposing and implementing state income tax savings opportunities; and performing tax due diligence and integration functions on domestic acquisitions. Salary range of up to $100K. Job #285.

Controller. This high impact position will be responsible for the financial reporting function and dedicated to process improvements around the monthly close cycle. A savvy communicator with effective leadership skills, the ideal candidate will have significant accounting experience, preferably with a public reporting company, and the drive necessary for a possible IPO in the next 12-18 months. Salary range of $100K - $125K + Bonus Potential. Job #283.

Learn more about these positions as well as other current opportunities.

Get Fit in Less Time   

Summer is just around the corner and it's hard not to think about shedding those few unwanted winter pounds – but who has the time?

Most of us are fortunate to live in communities rich with workout options, including posh health clubs, high tech weight lifting gyms, and holistic yoga studios, but have you considered the different types of personal training that are also available?

Personal training provides a variety of benefits: one-on-one accountability for your workout; efficient training in less time than a typical class; focused exercises tailored to your body's limitations or desires; workouts that fit your hectic schedule; and the all important fact that there is no annual membership fee to make us feel guilty if we miss a few weeks.

We've been hearing about great results, both mentally and physically, that our fellow FEWnet members have been getting out of various programs and trainers in the Twin Cities. We thought we'd share a couple of opportunities for you to keep your New Year's resolution in check while still being able to juggle your work and family load this summer. Keep in mind that these are just a short list of people and programs that FEWnet members are using around the Twin Cities.

The Firm F.I.T. Program – An intensive 8-week all encompassing workout program that incorporates interval training, weight lifting, and nutritional counseling within a supportive and fun small group setting.
Downtown Minneapolis

Verde Solutions, LLC and Victory Fitness, LLC – Personal training that can be done one-on-one or double the fun (while decreasing the cost) by getting a group of friends or co-workers to join you.
Travis A. Green ATR, RKC
Downtown Minneapolis and Woodbury locations

Northwest Athletic Club – A full service health club and spa chain, this is a great option for all fitness levels, not to mention various childcare programs available at each location.
Justin Salzl
St. Louis Park



Please e-mail us for more information about this quarter's tip or to share a time saving idea of your own.


What's going on in our marketplace   

  • Trainer and Speaker Showcase. Preview 16 of the nation's leading trainers, as well as keynote and motivational speakers from the faculty of Rockhurst University Continuing Education Center, as they deliver cutting-edge mini-workshops on essential workplace competencies. Enjoy a thoroughly engaging and entertaining day, find out what's new in the training world, and discover solutions to your organization's specific training needs.

    June 9, 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
    Hyatt Regency Minneapolis, 1300 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis

    Click here for more information

  • Women in Business Awards Luncheon. The Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal will host the 9th annual Women in Business awards luncheon to recognize 25 Women to Watch and 25 Industry Leaders. The event will also honor one woman with the Career Achievement award and one male CEO with the Ally award.

    Thursday, July 27, 2006, 11:00 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.
    Hilton Minneapolis, 1001 Marquette Avenue, Minneapolis

    11:00 a.m. Registration and Networking
    11:30 a.m. Lunch is served
    12:15 p.m. Program begins

    Registration and more information

Perm candidates and long-term contractors available

Contractor 1

  • Technical skills: Audit, budgeting, business plans, depreciation, financial reporting and analysis, general ledger, internal audit, fixed assets, public accounting, revenue recognition, hands on Sarbanes Oxley (SOX), and more!
  • Computer skills: Crystal Reports, Excel, QuickBooks, Quicken, SAP.
  • Industry experience: Agribusiness, construction, financial services, health care, manufacturing, nonprofit, retail, software.
  • This CPA has a solid public and industry background with SOX expertise to boot. SEC, acquisitions, benefits, and IPO experience round out this high impact contributor!
  • Bill rate: $79/hr.

Contractor 2

  • Technical skills: Accounts payable and receivable, general ledger, computer conversions, audit, account analysis, financial analysis and reporting, internal audit, inventory costing, public accounting, Sarbanes Oxley (SOX), year end close.
  • Computer skills: Excel, SAP, Access, PowerPoint.
  • Industry experience: Manufacturing, computers, wholesale.
  • This financial professional has it all - intelligence, presence, and personality. A hands on industry leader with big company experience, this contractor is the perfect fit for those who need a strategic, operationally focused professional to move their projects forward!
  • Bill rate: $145/hr.

Perm Candidate 1

  • Technical skills: General ledger, cost accounting, Sarbanes Oxley (SOX), budgeting, consolidations, month and year end close.
  • Computer skills: Access, Excel, SAP, Macros.
  • Industry experience: Construction and manufacturing.
  • A technically strong Senior Accountant with experience supporting the month and year end close process, forecasting, standard costing, variance analysis and more. This candidate has solid SOX compliance procedure experience and a personable demeanor that makes for a good fit for any team!
  • Target compensation: $60,000.

Perm Candidate 2

  • Technical skills: Activity based cost, accounts payable and receivable, audit, budgeting, business plans, cash management, financial reporting and analysis, financial presentations, financial modeling, fixed assets, general ledger, inventory costing, month and year end close, payroll, revenue recognition, supervision.
  • Computer skills: MAS 90, ADP, Ceridian, Excel, Great Plains, JD Edwards, Peachtree, QuickBooks, Quicken.
  • Industry experience: Construction, health care, law, manufacturing, nonprofit, retail, warehouse, distribution.
  • A "hands on" leader with 20 years of experience spanning accounting, finance, and process roles in small to mid-sized companies, this polished communicator has a knack for helping companies move forward.
  • Target compensation: $95,000.

    Call Certes at 952-345-4140 for more information about our outstanding contractors and candidates!
Click here for an available list of other Certes Contractors

Click here for an available list of other Perm Placement Network Candidates

Sponsored by Certes Financial Pros   

To e-mail any one of us, click our names.

Kris Larson, CPA

Sally Mainquist, CPA

Karen Oman
CPA inactive


Tami Farrell-LaQua
CPA inactive


Kelly Jacobson

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