Lunch with a Partner
Jul 02, 2019
Category: The Ohio State University
During my internship, every intern had the opportunity to sit down and get to know one of the partners of the firm. When I first opened our internship employee handbook and saw “Firm Leader Interview”, it looked a lot more intimidating than it turned out to be. It is simply a way to network with someone who has been in the firm for many years and can answer any questions you may have. It is an amazing opportunity for new hires, who may still be deciding on a career, a firm to work for, or whether to go into audit or tax, to just have a real face to face conversation where every question is taken seriously and will be beneficial to them.
We were all given a few weeks to think about who we would like to “interview”, and reach out to them to see when they would be available. I was fortunate enough to have selected Chris Bellamy, who is the Co-President of the Investment Industry Service division. Chris is seen as a firm leader and someone who drives this company forward year after year. When the day came, Chris and I walked through the downtown streets looking for a place to eat. We stopped into a little brunch spot near the office called “Yours Truly”. Once we were seated, the interview quickly turned into a friendly conversation where I was able to give him some insight into my experience so far, what I have enjoyed the most, and even about what is going on in my life.
As the conversation shifted away from me, I was able to ask questions about his career progression in the firm, how an employee’s role may change as they move up in the firm, and he even mentioned the salary increase one may receive if they continue at the firm. This is how I thought the conversation would go. I would ask a few work questions, get the information I needed, and be on my way. However, I actually learned even more about Chris and his life outside of work than I imagined. He has three children who are actively involved in sports, keeping him busy every weekend going to his one son’s travel baseball tournaments and his daughter’s swim meets. He lives in Avon Lake, where he loves to golf and root for all Cleveland sports teams. But the most interesting thing I learned, was that he is actually a part-owner of a bee farm. I was so surprised by this we ended up talking about bees for most of the lunch! To put it simply, him and his friend are able to lease the bees to different farms across the United States to pollinate crops for the farmers. And in the winter, they can ship the bees to California where they are much needed for the pollination of almond trees because of the major increase in popularity of almond products. It was very interesting to hear about his interests outside of work and what he does during his free time.
Overall, it was a great experience and I am glad to have met someone new inside the firm. I enjoyed getting to know someone who knows so much more than me, yet is still very humble and willing to help me with any question I need and guide me in the right direction. This is something I love about Cohen & Company. Every person is friendly and wants to learn more about you. Although there is a time and place to get work done, every person will stop and have a conversation with you about your day and what is going on in your life. Ultimately, I made a great decision to intern at Cohen & Company and I know after I leave in August I will have new friends I can rely on and talk to, no matter how high up they are in the firm!