McKinstry’s Ngoc Flynn on Cash Management Strategy in the Built Environment

“I joined McKinstry because I believe in the mission and the impact that we have on this beautiful planet we call home and all the lives that inhabit it. The best part is I’m constantly surrounded by people who share the same passion.”

Ngoc Flynn is a corporate controller who has been with McKinstry since the spring of 2023. Ngoc enjoys cross-functional collaboration in creating agile cash-management strategies as well as leading talented and passionate teams.

Learn more about Ngoc’s career path and the most rewarding aspects of her work at McKinstry.

Learn More About Ngoc’s Experience

What is your role at McKinstry? How did you get there?

I joined McKinstry in May 2023 as the corporate controller. My responsibilities span across different needs in finance and accounting, but my core responsibility is leading corporate accounting, treasury and accounts receivable. I’ve been here for about eight months, and I’m really enjoying the journey and the complexity that McKinstry offers. There are many opportunities for rising leaders to take ownership and help the company navigate through the ever-changing dynamics of the post-pandemic world. My career at McKinstry is going to be what I make of it.

How did you develop an interest in your field?

I studied accounting because I wanted to work for the FBI as a special agent in the white-collar crime unit. I didn’t get the job because I couldn’t pass the physical exam, so I took the role as an auditor after college. I discovered how transferable accounting skills are across industries, companies and even roles so I doubled down in this field. 

I’ve always been very attracted to companies with big goals and bold visions. Luckily, early in my career, I learned how to connect my work to each company’s ambitious and impactful mission. Linking the contribution I was making to the mission kept me engaged and passionate. The career path for accountants doesn’t have to be linear and/or constrained within imaginary lines. I love what I do, and I know how it helps people, so for me, this work is naturally inspiring.

What does success look like in your role?

Success can come in many forms for me in my role. In the case of people development, I lead teams of many talented, high potential and passionate people. If I can help them realize their potential and make a positive difference, then I’d consider that successful. In the case of financial reporting, success would mean being able to give people information that they can understand so they can make sound business decisions then that’s successful. The list can go on but at the end of the day, success in this role means that I’ve been able to effectively leverage my expertise and leadership to effect positive change at all levels to further McKinstry’s mission.

What is the most rewarding thing about your work?

There are few higher honors than being a trusted advisor to business leaders, both experienced and rising. I’m passionate about helping people develop their business acumen, especially those who don’t find financial numbers to be naturally intuitive. It’s so rewarding when these concepts click, and people become more confident in talking about financial results.

There’s also a lot of cross-functional collaboration in this work, so it’s rewarding when we have a diverse group of talented people come together for a common goal.

Within your area of expertise, what are the changes you see happening that impact either our industry or the work that you do?

There are many changes happening every day that significantly impact our industry. There’s a need for people in my profession to step up and help business leaders, ensuring they’re connected with the business and understand the numbers to make sound decisions. Factors such as macroeconomic conditions, geopolitical crises and evolving technology are constantly challenging our industry, impacting the competitive landscape in which we operate. For us to achieve our mission to innovate waste and harm out of the built environment, we need to respond to these changing variables quickly. This means that leaders across the enterprise will need to pivot as well.

To achieve that, there are a lot of technological changes that will affect our work, and we need to be able to leverage that technology to maximize our time and better support the business.

There’s also a need to pivot around cash-management strategy in the post-pandemic world due to changes within our contracts, business and customers. I’m enjoying the different puzzle pieces that come together to create an agile cash-management strategy, especially having the ability to work with different teams to make small changes that are impactful.

What change do you hope to inspire through your work at McKinstry?

I want to help people see how their work contributes to the bigger mission. Sometimes this can be very difficult, especially for those working in back-office support teams like corporate accounting, billing, payroll, accounts payable etc. These teams are not directly involved with the end products, projects and customers but their work is instrumental to ensuring McKinstry’s success. My hope is that these teams can easily learn to see how their work contributes to the mission, every single day. I would hope this kind of engagement would inspire them to dream bigger, reach for more and expand their potential.

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