Dawn Gamble's story

Dawn Gamble, CPA, CGMA

Consulting CFO

What motivated you to get the CGMA designation?
I was intrigued when it first came out, and saw the potential of it representing a skill set that could be vital to any organization and in strengthening the overall economy; however, I felt the full value and recognition needed was not there without an exam component. I have been very strategic with my career, and once I knew there was an exam component, I wanted to earn the designation to show that I possess the knowledge, skills and abilities for sound financial management at the executive level in a global organization. I believe even without being able to show actual specific experience on my resume, this designation shows my ability to transfer skills and experiences learned in other areas, industries and circumstances to the issue or job at hand.

How has the journey through taking the live and self-study learning and exam been?
It was a lot of work, but I wouldn’t have expected otherwise. The live review course was excellent and was extremely helpful in preparing for the exam, as well as to have some realistic expectations of how the exam would be, my potential score, and most importantly, what areas I needed to study more prior to the exam. I was then able to prioritize my study time for the self-study course based on those weaker areas. It was great that it also counted toward my CPE requirement.

What are your thoughts on the CGMA exam? What did you think about the format? What are some aspects that you liked or disliked?
It was very challenging. The format/software was not as user-friendly as I would have liked, but the live review course did help with preparing me for this. I liked that the questions/sections were related, or had a common theme, which helped to maintain thought processes throughout. I think if there wasn’t a common theme, it would be much more difficult to change thought processes and do well within the time constraints.

What have you gained from going through the Program?
In addition to the designation, I have gained a sense of accomplishment for completing it, and on the first try. I feel I have gained additional respect/recognition of what I bring to my job, and a little boost in my confidence didn’t hurt.

If you were to apply for a new job, would the program be something you’d list as an accomplishment/education? Would it be something you’d lean on to demonstrate expertise in MA?
Absolutely! I have already listed it on my LinkedIn profile. As I said above, I believe this proves that I possess the knowledge, skills and abilities for MA at the executive level in a global company.

Would you recommend the CGMA Program to peers and why?
Absolutely! In addition to what I’ve already stated above, it should be a natural progression of anyone’s career for those who want to continue to advance professionally. In today’s world, it is truly a global economy, and even small companies need the skills of someone that would hold the CGMA designation. I believe it should be considered a natural next step after obtaining your CPA. Of course, if you’re happy being a senior accountant or equivalent your entire career, then you probably don’t need it.

In your opinion, what is the value of obtaining the CGMA designation, both in terms of the journey to get it, as well as applying your knowledge, skills and experience to your organization?
The value is the proof for all to see and understand what I can bring to any organization. Those who work with me would see my knowledge, skills and abilities on a daily basis, regardless of the designation. In a larger organization and outside the organization, however, it’s meaningful for others who don’t work with me daily to have confidence in me, to respect that I know what I’m doing and talking about, and that I can handle most issues thrown my way.