The Monthly Leader Review Volume 1, Issue 3
March 2006


Welcome to the March issue of the Monthly Leader Review a newsletter that consists of an interview with a leader in the world of business, community and sports. This months interview is with a leader in the Accounting industry. He is a good friend who also was very influential in getting my business off the ground. So with that said, I am proud to share my March interview with Richard Levychin, CPA Managing Partner, KBL Eisner.

KBL Eisner is a CPA and advisory firm armed with 70 partners and the resources of over 400 professionals. KBL Eisner provides services in the areas of accounting, auditing, management consulting, taxation, information systems, corporate finance, litigation support, benefits consulting, S.E.C. practices, and estate and financial planning.

Richard has over 25 years of accounting, auditing, business advisory services and tax experience working with both privately owned and public entities in various industries including media, entertainment, real estate, manufacturing, not-for-profit, technology, retail, and professional services. His experience also includes expertise with SEC filings, initial public offerings, and compliance with regulatory bodies. As a business advisor he advises companies, helping them to identify and define their business and financial objectives, and then provides them with the on-going personal attention necessary to help them achieve their established goals.

He has written articles on a wide range of topics, which have been featured in several periodicals including Dollars and Sense, National Black MBA Magazine, Black Enterprise Magazine, and The Network Journal. He has also conducted seminars on a wide range of business topics including taxation, for several organizations including the Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Conference.

He is a member of several organizations including the National Association of Black Accountants, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants, and the National Association of Tax Professionals. He currently serves as treasurer of the New York chapter of One Hundred Black Men.

He is a graduate of Baruch College, and started his career with a Big Four CPA firm.

To learn more about KBL Eisner, just visit their website at http://www.kbleisner.com/

I hope you enjoy the interview.


The March Leader Interview
  • Richard Levychin, CPA Managing Partner - KBL Eisner

    Richard Levychin, CPA Managing Partner - KBL Eisner

    Steve Gavatorta: What motivates you?

    Richard Levychin: I love the game of business. In my current role I get to create who the firm is, our identity, and strategies on how to get where we need to go. That includes being involved in creating the firm's branding, bringing in talent, identifying additional lines of services to offer clients, and bringing in business.

    Steve Gavatorta: How do you motivate your team at KBL Eisner?

    Richard Levychin: By speaking to everyone's specific listening style. Each person is an individual so you need to motivate each one based upon who they are and what specifically motivates them. Some people are in it for the money. Some people are motivated by the intellectual pursuit; in other words they love stimulating work. So I motivate first by speaking to what motivates them individually. Then I create an environment that allows my team to get their job done. Then I leave the lines of communication wide open. And I try to keep it fun, because fun is, well, fun.

    Steve Gavatorta: Describe your leadership style?

    Richard Levychin: I am task oriented. I feel that if I get bogged down in details, it will limit my ability to do what I do best which is creating the firm's branding, bringing in talent, identifying additional lines of services to offer clients, and bringing in business. So I surround myself with really smart people, and I delegate like crazy. And I set up very strong lines of communication.

    I also focus on making sure that clients are happy, and that my team knows that, in addition to doing the job, you need to make the client happy.

    Steve Gavatorta: Who do you consider a good leader/role model & why?

    Richard Levychin: Martin Luther King. He was able to lead with limited resources, in very challenging times, selling something (civil rights) that was a relatively new concept that the majority of the country was not interested in, with a team of people that didn't start off particularly well trained, in a game that had huge stakes and the potential of phenomenal downside. And he was tremendously successful and won a Noble Peace Prize to boot. Stories like this speak to me.

    Steve Gavatorta: How do you continue to lead through times of adversity?

    Richard Levychin: I communicate a lot. I just keep listening and ask questions. There is always an answer in there somewhere. I believe if you listen long and hard enough it will show up. Also I invest a lot of time managing my stress levels so that I can have the energy to lead by following a proper diet, working out rigorously, and hanging with the wife and kids.

    And I never give up. I never, ever give up. I may back off for a minute. But know that I will return.

    Steve Gavatorta: During these fast paced times, how do you lead during change and ambiguity?

    Richard Levychin: Same as above. I feel the key to getting business, having strong relationships, and leading is listening and asking questions. That's all you got to do. Eventually the answer will show up. Just keep moving and focus.

    Steve Gavatorta: Do you have any suggested reading on Management, Motivation and/or Leadership?

    Richard Levychin: The E Myth, The Tipping Point and The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.

    Steve Gavatorta: Thanks for your time, Richard.

    Hello, I'm Steve Gavatorta & welcome you to the first addition of the Monthly Leader Review. I hope you enjoy the interview and find it helpful. Please feel free to forward it on to others - there is no fee for signing up. For more about me, simply click on the link below.

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