For more than 30 years working at Deloitte, Kim Griffin-Hunter, B.B.A. ’88 has been a leader and mentor within the company every step of the way. As a managing partner for Deloitte’s South Florida practice, Griffin-Hunter gives much of the credit to her involvement with an array of affinity groups and networks while attending the Miami Herbert Business School. The opportunities to connect and engage were key for helping to build a strong foundation for her successful career trajectory.
Learn more about Griffin-Hunter and excellence in leadership in this Q & A:
Can you tell us about your decision to attend UM and a few details about how you enjoyed your time here?
I was first introduced to UM through my mom when I was in elementary school. She was a teacher and administrator here in Miami and was in the process of obtaining her masters at UM. One day, she took me with her to a class, and I still remembered that day when it came time for me to apply to schools for my undergrad degree. During the application process, I knew UM would be one of my top choices. At the end of the process, I received the Golden Drum academic scholarship, which was the capstone to why I decided to come to UM – where I thoroughly enjoyed my experience.
How did your decision to attend UM impact your career journey?
Attending UM not only prepared me for the career path that I chose, but it gave me a forum to meet a diverse group of students that influenced my career. During my time at UM, I was able to be a part of various clubs and organizations—including Greek life—that helped me develop the interpersonal skills that have impacted me positively in the professional world.
Can you share details about your first steps after graduating and how they led to becoming a leader at Deloitte?
While I was still in school, I interviewed with several companies through the UM Toppel Career Center, where I was introduced to Deloitte and chose to start my career at the organization. It was a very difficult decision, but I chose Deloitte given its culture and the fit I saw for myself. My first two years were very focused on learning and observing, and I began to understand what success could look like and realized that one day, I could be a leader in the organization. That leadership journey really started after my promotion to manager. I became very active in the community on nonprofit boards and became the Chapter President for the National Association of Black Accountants (NABA). All these activities, along with great client service, helped prepare me to become a managing partner.
What is your advice for current students getting ready to graduate, as well as UM alumni who are entering the workforce?
My advice to students is to always be open-minded to all opportunities and to understand that every interaction leaves an impression, so always present your best self. If you are unsure about a subject matter or topic, always read and study in advance before speaking to the subject in interviews or in the workplace. Also, ask questions about things you’re unsure of. What I have learned is that technology can be a great tool in the workplace, but those who can communicate and have a great executive presence can really shine.
Why is it important for women to lead, guide, and inspire one another in the workplace and in life?
It’s no coincidence that I have remained at Deloitte for more than 30 years. Our values align, and working at Deloitte has consistently fostered my growth. In my personal experience, Deloitte provides actionable steps on how people can personalize, identify, model, and advance inclusion every day.
It is important for women to lead, guide, and inspire others, including other women, and my advice for women in leadership is to be deliberate in developing your core skill-set and build relationships with a wide range of practitioners. Career progression is not linear and having a broad network will be beneficial on a winding, and sometimes long, road. While building your career, I believe it’s important to remain true to yourself and your values because, at the end of the day, the level of happiness you feel in your career will contribute either positively or negatively to your success.
Why is it important to give back to those who have mentored and helped us along the way?
Every day and in every interaction, I can lift people up. I believe that no matter where I go in life, it’s important to remember my roots and the path I’ve traveled. I have served as a role model and mentor for the next generation, lifting others up and encouraging them to use their voices. I feel strongly about giving advice each day that may positively position others in the workplace or even accelerate or alter their career journeys. In addition, it’s important to open doors and make introductions for others, giving them the opportunity to shine. Simply put, I try to find the time to do it every day—sometimes in small ways, sometimes in large ways. It all matters.