As the CEO of NZME, BDO Alumnus Michael Boggs presides over a network of 80 media brands including The New Zealand Herald, Newstalk ZB, The Hits, ZM, and e-commerce platform GrabOne.
Could you tell us a bit about your time at BDO.
I was lucky enough to join BDO (then Hogg Young Cathie) straight from High School and was supported to complete my accounting qualifications part-time while working full-time. The support offered by all of those that I worked with, many of whom are still with BDO, was phenomenal and made studying that much easier.
With the benefit of hindsight, what advice would you give your newly-qualified self?
Never say no to an opportunity to try something new. When I’ve gone outside of my comfort zone (in changing a role within a business or changing to a new business), I’ve found the most rewarding experiences and opportunities.
How do you think the accounting profession has changed since you qualified?
No longer is the focus on the numbers, but much more on the story. The numbers are a given (and often automated), the story around the numbers is what will make a difference to your client and your career.
What do you think are the key skills that CAs need to hone in order to transfer into corporate roles?
Make sure you make yourself part of the business. Finance, as a business partner, isn’t restricted to just giving advice about the financial performance, but has an amazing opportunity to provide insight and recommendations right across the business. Engross yourself in it!
What have been your career highlights to date (prior to your current role)?.
I’ve been lucky enough to work for CEOs who have let me partner with them (in my CFO capacity) to run the business, while ensuring that I also got to have experience outside the core finance function. This has seen me lead sales organisations, pacific island operations and Christchurch house rebuilds – these involved me dealing with people from different walks of life, different cultures and difficult situations and has been invaluable in developing my skills and experience.
What do you enjoy most about your role as CEO of NZME?
NZME is in the business of informing and entertaining. This means that no two days are the same and that there is a huge variety of personalities and talent that I deal with daily. That keeps it interesting. In the end, my role focusses on motivating a group of talented people to ensure we deliver for our shareholders.
What do you do to relax?
I’m lucky enough to be able to get away to the Coromandel regularly and spend quality time with my wife Jodi and kids Maddy (15) and Cooper (13) on or in the water