An Interview With...
Luís Felipe Díaz Galeano
What is your job title and what do you do?
I'm the financial accounting and systems manager for a healthcare company. I manage a job with two heads. On one head, I make sure that the financial information of the company is complete and accurate. This allows the public to invest money in the company, money that we can use to develop new drugs and medicines to improve the quality of life. The other head is related to Systems. For instance, systems and processes that help streamline the flow of products in order to access the market more rapidly. I supervise (advise, help, coach, tutor) the work of people doing totally different things.
Did you always want to be in the accounting field? If not, what else did you want to be?
Basically yes. The world of Finance can be very fascinating and is the supporting role for a company to concentrate in research and development. I started out studying engineering. I was impressed by buildings and machinery that could help us create a better world. On the other hand, this line of work asks for a certain aptitudes I was not good at, so I looked for a career that would basically satisfy the same needs but from a different angle.
What were your favorite classes in school?
Math, Biology and Literature
What classes (K-12) prepared you for a job in finance?
From a technical point of view you could say that Math is very necessary however, literature and other subjects that help you have a wider perspective of life are also very necessary. Do not see a job that deals with numbers solely on the technical aspects. The job needs a person who is flexible and demanding at the same time. A person that needs to persuade people to put money in the company and a person that must convince innovators to spend within a limit. Numbers alone will not provide you with that knowledge. Also acting classes and languages are very helpful too.
What do you like best about your job?
To be on the move. I cannot sit behind a desk for eight solid hours. I need to move, so I attend meetings, talk to experts, discuss issues and find consensus with disagreeing parties. I enjoy that.
What is the worst thing about your job?
Mistrust. I like to work on an honor system, that is I give credit (I trust people) and people have to match up to it. If they don't keep it or abuse that trust then we have a problem.
What kind of hours do you work? Do you travel for your job?
The normal working hour schedule is 8 hours with an hour break for lunch. I use to travel a lot in the past. It was very tiresome but the good part is that I got to see a lot of the world. I met people of different nationalities and learned a few languages which, in turn, helped me learn more about the countries and the people I was visiting.
What languages do you speak? What is your native language?
Spanish, English and French. I can also get by in Portuguese and Italian. I had the chance to fly to Romania in January of 2000 and know what? With my knowledge of Italian, Spanish, French and Portuguese I could understand Romanian if spoken slowly at me. Imagine, had I been there longer than the week I spent I would have added another language to my list. My native language is Spanish but I learned English quite early in my life so either one could be native.
Do your children speak other languages?
Yes, Spanish and English and they are also learning French.
What do they think of your job?
My son doesn't like it. He's more of a free spirit. He would rather prefer a job outdoors. My daughter finds it cool but she is interested more in the Arts so I guess she accepts it but would not follow my steps.
What kind of pets do you have and what animals are your favorites?
All animals are favorites. The problem is that not all can be pets. I have two horses (Glebe and Oaklands) now and two dogs (Simba and Muffy). I had a Persian cat (Scarlett) but she left us a few days ago after 17 years of close company and another dog (Oscar) which left us last year after taking care of my father. I have always had dogs as close companions but horses are up there on my list too.
What advice do you have for kids?
Kids need to tell grown ups what they think is good or ask for help to make the right choice. My experience as a kid is too distant from yours and times change so I need to get updated. Life is not a cardboard section out of a school book. It has different perspectives and all of them are true. Search for the truth openly and Life will expose itself before your eyes.
- 14 August 2001
29 March 2002
© 2001-2002 - www.imagiverse.org