lucent is growing! Not just into our new name and brand, but our client base too. With growth comes a need for extra resources and technical expertise, both of which we embrace. And it’s to that end that we are today delighted to introduce our newest star, Matthew (Matt) Wingrave.
Matt has joined us to head up our tax and advisory team, and while that might make him sound like just another accountant, he’s far from it. Don’t believe us? Why don’t we peek below the surface to see what makes him tick and, more importantly, how he’s settling in here at lucent financial.
5 Minutes with … Matthew (Matt) Wingrave, New Head of Taxation and Advisory
So Matt, it’s been nearly a month now. How have you settled in?
Great! But I do feel a bit like a deer caught in headlights at the moment. I’m adapting to a whole new way of doing things. My background is with a more traditional firm where the norm is still very much paper and the ‘manila folder file note’.
At lucent, everything is digital and I mean really digital. I’m used to this (holds up a manila folder containing 100’s of pages) and in two weeks at lucent, I’ve used about this much paper (holds up his recycling box containing five pages).
At lucent it is efficiency on steroids!
Ha! Sounds like you have a way with words. Speaking of words, how would you describe yourself in three of them?
Loyalty, passion and loyalty. That counts, right? I can use the same word twice?
Sure, why not. Perhaps tell us why…
I emphasise loyalty because I was with my last firm (Bentleys) for nine years and it was a really hard decision to leave—- they are a great firm, with wonderful people.
But when it came down to it, the allure of lucent was just too strong. That’s where the “passion” bit comes in. lucent (and Rachael in particular) is a truly progressive firm, and a trailblazer in the industry.
There are a number of accounting firms on a similar trajectory, but I don’t know first-hand of one that’s as advanced as lucent. They really understand how to practically deliver new ways of thinking to advance client businesses.
The best way I can explain it and my passion for lucent’s approach is that the lucent business model takes the traditional way of doing things, tips it upside down, shakes it around, turns it inside out and then dips it in gold.
That sounds impressive. So, in your own words, what has lucent got that other accounting firms are still trying to bottle?
The lucent philosophy centres around a business partnership. That is, we are there for you all year round, not just at tax time, not just in keeping the books but as a constant and consistent source of business advice. lucent’s approach is: everything you need under the one roof.
As touched on already, we’re heavily focused on utilising the latest technology and the cloud has revolutionised the way we do things. Harnessing technology to help small business is one of our specialties.
We also realise that traditional tax timelines that work retrospectively do not and cannot provide business owners with the tools or clarity to make informed decisions. Such decisions require good cash flow management, strategic planning and growth and this is only possible when businesses are provided with real-time data and reporting. lucent looks at data and reporting in real-time to ensure our clients have the best opportunities to plan and grow. Not many firms do that.
As I said, we have a business partnership philosophy.
OK, more about Matt please. Earlier, you mentioned the word “passion”. What is one of your hidden passions?
(Groans) Argh, this is possibly exposing too much, but I play the clarinet, saxophone, trumpet, piano, drums and even took up the French Horn for a while.
You’re kidding, how is that even possible?
I’ve just always loved music. It’s a passion I share with my three siblings. When I was growing up, my parents were heavily involved in their local community groups. Basically, if there was a committee within cooee, they were on it. This included the Onkaparinga City Concert band which I was thrown into at age eight and my love of music grew from there. Amazingly, it’s also where I met many of my best mates who’ve since become lifelong friends.
Your parents community spirit obviously rubbed off on you as I hear you’re heavily involved in the Cove Tigers?
Yes, you have good sources indeed. I have been supporting the Cove Netball club for many years. In particular, the ‘cubs come and try’ initiative is another passion of mine. I have three young children, so it’s kind of a natural extension of being a father and spending time with them.
And now that I’ve said all that about music and cubs netball, I’ve realised how “unblokey” I may sound to some. Of course, I’m also your regular Aussie male who loves a beer and the footy too. No really…care to spot me while I do a quick set of chest presses? Ha ha ha…
Jokes aside, I’ve also been told that when you made the move to lucent, you came as a package deal bringing along your right hand woman, Stephanie Perrotta (Steph).
Yes, Steph and I have worked together for around 5 years and we are a good team. I’ve had the privilege of training Steph from a graduate through to the near completion of her CA qualifications — she is blossoming into a great accountant. Basically, my diabolical plan is that I’m building an upgraded, far superior model of me!
And if we asked Steph, your “superior self” in the making: ‘What should we know about Matt?’, what would she say?
Ha! I reckon she’d say “he’s one of the girls”. She regularly accuses me of being the only guy gossiping in the lunch room. Not true at all. All men gossip, don’t they? Guys? Hey guys, back me up here. Where are you all going?