[Buzzvil People] Christine Kwon, Finance Manager

Buzzvil People took the opportunity to introduce each Buzzvillians with a variety of backgrounds, personality, and thoughts. If you are wondering how best colleagues in Buzzvil are gathering to create the best team, if you are curious about each of the colorful Buzzvillians, please pay attention to Buzzvil People.

1. Please give us a quick introduction of yourself.

Hello, I’m Christine who is in charge of #Being Tall and #Scary and finally Finance. ^^ I’ll talk about my work experience below, so I’m going to introduce myself simply using keywords here.

  • #Being Tall: I’m 170 cm tall. Many think I’m 174~180 cm tall, but as the yearly physical test result shows, I have been 170 cm since I was 18 years old. It’s 169 cm to be exact but nobody believes it, so I say I’m 170 cm. The reason why you think I’m that tall is because I wear high heels, and most that I own are over 9 cm. I like wearing high heels not because I want to be taller. I just like them. I’m tall because my dad and mom are 180 cm and 170 cm each, so it’s in my DNA. Not because I drank a lot of milk. (In Korea, there’s a saying that you grow tall if you drink lots of milk.) So, there are the answers to the FAQs I get on a daily basis ^^;
  • #Being Scary: This is a character which I came to know after I started working at Buzzvil: people tell me that I’m a bit scary. Even Young, Buzzvil’s meditator and co-CEO, said that I’m the person he is the most afraid of at the company, but I don’t know why. (If you do, please DM me. You’ll be rewarded handsomely!) I use emojis when texting or sending emails and I try to always smile, but I guess it doesn’t really work. Once I talked about this problem with Haein who used to work here and she said that though I use a smiley face (^^) often, there is one thing I always missed– the dash in the middle. But I do give my smiley face its lips ^_____________^ Still, people find me scary. Is it the why I talk? Or maybe Buzzvilians are just very sensitive? I have no way of knowing. 

2. What brings you to Buzzvil?

I just to work abroad. While I was sending out my resume, wanting to come back to Korea, a headhunter reached me to talk about Buzzvil. So I came back to Korea for the interview. The first impression of Buzzvil that I got during my first and second round of interviews were as following:

  • It must be a very youthful company. -> The office life would be very interesting. (I was interviewed in the Dream Room, which uses the Ping-Pong table as a desk.)
  • The work culture may not be that hierarchical. Many Korean offices are notorious for that. -> There should be no people (usually older) who would think they are authorized to tell others what to do or how to live their lives. (There were Mati, Max, Teddy, who are from Ethiopia, France and the US respectively, walking around the floor.)
  • This company seems to consider character very important. -> This company must have a lot of good people. (I was interviewed for an hour in each interview. The company explores who you are thoroughly.)

Though the first impression was good, I rejected the job offer at first. But the headhunter’s perseverance to bring me to this company made me change my mind. The day after I rejected the offer, he called me whenever he had an opportunity bet ween 8 am to 9pm and stressed how good Buzzvil was. Finally, I joined the company for the two reasons below:

  • I was convinced that this company was a good choice because the headhunter who doesn’t even work for the company was confident about the offer.
  • I had no intention of changing my number. He really called me a lot until I changed my mind.

3. What is your role at Buzzvil?

I’ve been in the field of finance for a long time. I worked for four and half years before I came to Buzzvil. My role in the Finance team may change soon, but here is a rough idea of what I’m doing now. I’ll make it easier for you to understand.

  • Domestic Settlement: ‘Settlement’ simply means ‘expressing all financial activities in a company’. Therefore when a yearly/monthly settlement is done, all financial activities in the company are stated in the company’s financial statements(report). By financial activities, I mean payments made for the breakfast for employees, computers used for work, wages when someone joins the company and severance when someone leaves and more. Seems like fun? I’ll stop here. If I go in deeper, you will change your mind. In reality, a lot has to be reflected in the financial statements, so my work calls for attention to details and a lot of time.
  • Receivables Management: Most people are mainly interested in the money that is earned or increase in revenue. However, there is one thing most people overlook. The increase in “sales” and actual money comes into the company’s pocket is a different story. So, some companies that overlook this closes doors. They go bankrupt even though they are in positive condition in the financial statements because in reality, they have no money to keep operating. I’m keeping a close eye so Buzzvil is sustainable. How? For positive receivable, I follow up on the payment due date and clear them when the payment is made. For negative receivable, I handle separate processes for it. I write statements and submit them. I’ve been involved in lawsuits. At first I wasn’t used to it but now I can write it in 10 minutes. When payments are made, I can check right away and feel proud. Now I’m setting up protocol for overseas receivable.
  • Budget management: Setting up a budget can easily be compared to setting a credit card limit for a month or a year. In setting a credit limit, we consider how much our income will be and how much money we will have to save or spend. Also, to decide a yearly budget, we have to project how much the company’s sales and profit will be. If the one-year target sales, head count plan, and target return rate are fixed, the entire company’s and each team’s budget is calculated. And that completed one-year business plan provides guidelines which will help in managing the company. Not only is it important to set a budget, but it is also important to manage the budget as planned. At the end of the year, the actual amount of money left should be the same as we planned in the beginning of the year. Buuuuuuut, easier said than done. So I get migraine all the time. ^^;

4. How does it feel to work at a startup? or advertising industry?

  • I’ve worked in another advertising company before. But working at an IT company was very new to me. Despite being an ad-related company, the Sales team here was smaller than I expected and there wasn’t a Creative group. It was surprising. Also, I had never met an engineering student in college, so working with developers was particularly interesting. Looking at their black or white screens with small colorful letters on it, I’ve always thought “Wow… that’s cool…’, but when I asked them what that is, they always say that it’s nothing. (But it is something, though. There are the best developers.)
  • Working at a startup shocked me in a really good way. This Buzzvil life is full of surprising moments, but thinking about it now, I guess it’s not because this company is a ‘startup’, but because it’s ‘Buzzvil’. I will brag about Buzzvil later, so here I’ll just talk about what it’s like to work at a startup. The impact of each member is huge. Therefore, if you’re an ‘eager beaver’, I recommend you work in a startup so you can test your limit. Buzzvil is the place which can give its employees a bunch of work until you say, “Stop!! No more!” (I’m joking.)

5. Is there something that you can say “this is the best part being Buzzvilians”?

I have so many things to say but I’ll keep it short to two points:

  • Flexibility in time and place: One of the best things in Buzzvil is that there are many spots to work like the bar table near the window which shows the lake, lobby sofa, conference room, lounge and so on. So, when I can’t concentrate on my work, I try to move from one place to another, and I can’t move to all these places in a day. (Buzzvil doesn’t give me any chance not to concentrate ^^;) You can do your work not only in the office, but also in the coffee shops nearby, and you can leave the office if you come early in the morning. The time when you come to work and go for a lunch is flexible too. You may think Buzzvil is a place to play. Yup, we play and work hard too in a good environment. There are various break areas, so this explains why I come to my office even on weekends^^
  • Communication: One of my favorite part of Buzzvil is the entire meeting which is held on every other Monday. Every worker sits around in the Auditorium and listen to the CEO Talk, team presentation and new members’ self-introductions. I really love this time when everyone gathers face to face and talks about company’s pending issues. It’s a session that includes everyone in the company’s communication. This really gives a sense of belonging. It’s okay if you are curious about what others are up to. They will let you feel included. I think this is very rare.

6. Do you have a personal goal or dream? If so, how does your experience at Buzzvil help you?

Actually, I don’t like it when people ask what my dream is. But this company always asks me about my dream^^; Personally, my dream is to ‘feel happy at least once a day’. It seems very easy to accomplish, but it’s quite difficult. There are not many people who can say, “I was happy today.” When I was in a Philosophy class in college, my professor said ’Every day before you go to sleep, record your happiness index with a number. And set your life goal to make that number rise gradually. You will face a new life.’ And I can’t forget his words until now. So I’m struggling to reach my goal every day. Thankfully, Buzzvil supports my dream. It colors my time in the place where I spend over half of my day. It is already a place that goes beyond the concept of work space and company, so being with Buzzvil helps my dream come true every day. :)

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