10 Questions with Chiranshu Kumar (May 2019)

1. What do you do at The Marquee Group?

I’m an Associate in the Consulting team at The Marquee Group. I am responsible for building all sorts of financial models and decision-making tools for clients. I also work with the instructors during our summer bank training programs and help to develop content for our new courses. I also support our Accreditation business by creating exam content and grading exams.

2. How long have you been at Marquee?

I have been with Marquee for nearly two years. I joined in June 2017.

3. What do you like most about your job?

I love building and designing models from start to finish. I enjoy everything from the initial scoping conversation with the client all the way to seeing the client adopt and use the new tool. There is a tremendous sense of accomplishment when the client is happy and I see how impactful the new model is on their business. Excel can do many things and it never ceases to amaze me! I also enjoy the aspect of working with clients from different industries. So far, I have been lucky to meet great people from many different industries including real estate, pension funds, asset managers, and even cannabis companies.

4. You have great Excel skills and people often come to you for help with their spreadsheets. What are some common questions that you see?

I don’t think I have ever received two questions that were exactly alike. Models are all very unique and each one has their own nuances. When I first look at a model someone has sent me, I often look at Marquee’s six principles of model design and go from there.

5. What are some of the most interesting things you’ve learned working in the Consulting team?

Every project is different and I get to apply critical thinking and problem-solving skills in almost all of the projects. I am always learning something new in Excel since it seems endless in what it can do. Some of the great technologies I have worked with include FP&A models with rolling budgets and rolling valuations, dynamic dashboards that help clients tell a story, and data aggregation tools that import data from external sources to automate report generation. Clients are always pleasantly surprised by Excel’s features and (sometimes unknown) capabilities.  

6. What is your favourite snack to munch on while building a model ?

Smartfood cheddar popcorn and Miss Vickie’s jalapeno chips. Those are my absolute favourite.

7. What is your favourite keyboard shortcut or modeling tip?

When I am auditing my own work and checking for consistent formulas, I use Ctrl + \ (to check row differences) and Ctrl + Shift + \ (to check column differences).

8. I know you like financial modeling and Excel (who doesn’t!) but what are your interests outside of work?

I enjoy traveling and try to get away on short trips every couple of months. I was born in India with a very global upbringing and I came to Canada in 2015 to study at Rotman. I love trying new foods and getting a change of scenery when I go away. Next on my travel list are Turkey, Turks and Caicos, and Switzerland.

9. If you weren’t working at Marquee, what would you be doing?

I would have been a professional gamer broadcasting my gameplay on my own YouTube channel.

10. L-shaped Enter key or straight Enter key?

Straight enter key, for sure. It’s easier to use and takes up less space on the keyboard. I had an L-shaped key on my last laptop and it actually broke apart! I am pretty hard on my keyboard and clearly the L-shape did not work out very well for me.