Team

  • Matthew Tol
    Matthew Tol
    Principal
  • Tim McFarlane
    Tim McFarlane
    General Manager
  • Simon Ward
    Simon Ward
    Business Advisor
  • Simone Shannon
    Simone Shannon
    Business Advisor
  • Brendan Howard
    Brendan Howard
    Business Advisor
  • Corey Kirby
    Corey Kirby
    Business Advisor
  • Mark Edwards
    Mark Edwards
    Business Advisor
  • Madeline Wallis
    Madeline Wallis
    Marketing Director
  • Carolyn Darke
    Carolyn Darke
    Receptionist
  • Danielle Riding
    Danielle Riding
    Technical Services Manager
Matthew Tol
Principal

Comm. (Acc., Comm. Law, Mgmt), F.C.A., C.T.A., F.T.I.A.

What do you enjoy doing?

Helping people achieve what they often believe they can’t.

Why did you start this career?

Felt I could make a difference and it involves dealing with people.

What is your greatest work achievement?

There are actually two: Helping more than 30 people get a start in this profession and seeing customers do some extraordinarily wonderful things

Are you task/goal or more people/relationship focused?

Bit of both!  Love a challenge and trying new things but I also get great satisfaction from seeing people do things they didn’t believe was possible.

What gets you motivated and is important to you?

Helping people learn and develop into the best version of themselves.  Often times people aren’t aware of just how great they can be.

What has been the most important innovation you have witnessed in your lifetime?

Just one? The interweb thingy has changed a lot of things (not necessarily for the better).

If you could invite any 3 people to dinner, who would they be and why?

Lord Denning (he was a Judge in the House of Lords in the UK and had a wonderful way with words – he could distil highly complex issues down to very simple language which is a skill that is under-rated), Simon Sinek (he seems to really understand people which is the core of any business and can communicate his thinking in very clear and understandable terms), my daughter Phoebe – because she makes me laugh!

What Netflix series would you recommend?

Silk

Tim McFarlane
General Manager

B.Comm. (Ec., Mktg., Bus. Law), Diploma of Financial Planning

What do you enjoy doing?

Working with people to achieve a common goal. I like eating Caz’s cakes when she brings them to work.

Why did you start this career?

Was at a point where a management role was the next career move. Had gained experience through the banks over the years but I wanted to change industries. Plus I wanted exposure to running a business.

What is your greatest work achievement?

Very proud to be a part of MTA when we won the Commerce Ballarat – “Best Service” Award. Looking back over the years, I believe we have undertaken significant change to adapt to new technologies and service offerings.

Are you task/goal or more people/relationship focused?

People / relationships focused which motivates me to achieve goals/tasks.

What gets you motivated and is important to you?

Freedom to make decisions, honesty and genuine people.

What has been the most important innovation you have witnessed in your lifetime?

Internet – the ability to access anything, anywhere in the world.

If you could invite any 3 people to dinner, who would they be and why?

Kevin Bartlett – as I would want to hear about Richmond’s last premiership win! Sir Edward ‘Weary’ Dunlop – to hear the stories of what they endured through World War 2. Cat Stevens – to belt out some good tunes after dinner.

What Netflix series would you recommend?

Orange is the new Black. Sons of Anarchy. Also add Mad Men and Breaking Bad.

Simon Ward
Business Advisor

B.Comm (Acc) CA

What do you enjoy doing?

Property development;

Medical practitioners;

Finding solutions to business problems.

Why did you start this career?

Interest in small business and liked the idea of helping mum and dad business owners meet their goals.

What is your greatest work achievement?

Starting at MTA!

Are you task/goal or more people/relationship focused?

Relationship focused. Like to see the work I do help other people succeed.

What gets you motivated and is important to you?

Seeing desired outcomes result from a laid-out plan motivates me;

Ensuring I get the best out of myself is important to me.

What has been the most important innovation you have witnessed in your lifetime?

Internet

If you could invite any 3 people to dinner, who would they be and why?

Lance Armstrong – big fan and would have an interesting story to tell (assuming he tells the truth!)

Kanye West – to add a bit of theatre; and

Grandpa – taken too soon and there is many things I would love to ask him.

What Netflix series would you recommend? (This can just be the title)

Peaky Blinders

Simone Shannon
Business Advisor

Comm. (Acc), B.Mgmt (Mktg/HR), CA

What do you enjoy doing?

I LOVE helping you to grow your business. Whether that’s starting out or developing in a new area, I enjoy taking that journey with you, every step of the way.

Why did you start this career?

Growing up watching my parents build their business in rural Victoria helped me to developed an interest in other businesses and how they operate. Being able to help them be their best and assist with that process really motivates me, oh and I love numbers!

What is your greatest work achievement?

Seeing a local ballarat business I’ve been involved with from the beginning become so successful and be what it is today. It’s amazing what can come from a simple idea and some drive to achieve it. My ability to think wider than your typical accountant has allowed me to ensure clients minimise their tax obligations and also operate under the most appropriate structure. Getting to know my clients is also important to me, building trusting relationships is one of the most important things we can do as business advisors.

Are you task/goal or more people/relationship focused?

People/ Relationship focus! I enjoy quality social relationships. I often become friends with my clients and place my focus on people.  I like to work with people and help them. Strangers are just friends I have not met!

What gets you motivated and is important to you?

I’m high utilitarian and individualistic so I’m motivated to succeed and standout. Wealth, being monetary or happiness, drives me. I want to achieve this not only for myself but for my clients.

What has been the most important innovation you have witnessed in your lifetime?

I’m still waiting for a hoverboard!

If you could invite any 3 people to dinner, who would they be and why?

Adriano Zumbo, Heston Blumenthal and Maggie Beer so they could cook for me!

What Netflix series would you recommend?

Blacklist

Brendan Howard
Business Advisor

B.Comm. (Acc) CA

What do you enjoy doing?

I enjoy building relationships with customers and working with them to achieve their business goals.

Why did you start this career?

I studied accounting in year 10 at school and really enjoyed it, from there I completed Units 1 & 2 for accounting in VCE and decided this was a career I could really enjoy and since then have worked towards that which has been fulfilling.

What is your greatest work achievement?

Completing my CA (Chartered Accountants) course and becoming qualified would have to be my biggest accomplishment to date.

Are you task/goal or more people/relationship focused?

I tend to be more people/relationship focused. I like to build strong relationships with the customers we work with.

What gets you motivated and is important to you?

Family, Football and a good work/life balance are important to me. I am motivated the most when it comes to helping those that I have a close relationship with.

What has been the most important innovation you have witnessed in your lifetime?

iPhone – completely changed the way people interact and view technology.

If you could invite any 3 people to dinner, who would they be and why?

Eli Manning – been a big Giants fan over the past 10 + years. Zach Braff who starred in the comedy scrubs, still my favourite TV show of all time. Warren Buffet, I’d love to sit down and pick his brains on business and investing.

What Netflix series would you recommend?

Suits, Grimm, Brooklyn Nine-Nine

Corey Kirby
Business Advisor

B.Comm (Acc). CA

What do you enjoy doing?

Business Advisory and working with start-up businesses. I enjoy putting all of the pieces of a puzzle together and figuring out different ways to solve problems or look at an issue. Working with start-ups or completing a feasibility analysis is like putting all of the pieces of the puzzle together to provide the customer with the best information possible to make a decision.

Why did you start this career?

I had to choose between Accounting and PE during Year 12 as classes clashed and chose accounting. Haven’t looked back. I also wasn’t good enough to make the AFL as a player and thought I could be a sports administrator instead.

What is your greatest work achievement?

Winning our AFL Tipping Competition back-to-back although I have fallen into a form slump recently.

Are you task/goal or more people/relationship focused?

Task/Goal focused. Not a big fan of people! Kidding. I like to build relationships with people over time, when you have a high level of trust with someone then I feel we can really flourish as advisors.

What gets you motivated and is important to you?

Winning and being the best I can be. I am a high individualistic and high utilitarian person. I am competitive and driven although some may say I have softened since having a daughter.

What has been the most important innovation you have witnessed in your lifetime?

Twitter. I can spend all day on Twitter and it is a therapeutic ranting platform when Collingwood/Arsenal lose.

If you could invite any 3 people to dinner, who would they be and why?

Arsene Wenger, Nathan Buckley and Phil Knight (Nike President)

What Netflix series would you recommend?

House of Cards (US). This may have something to do with being a High Individualistic/High Utilitarian person.

Mark Edwards
Business Advisor

MPA. CA

What do you enjoy doing?

Helping people navigate and simplify the red tape that exists around business and tax and being able to enjoy a laugh with people.

Why did you start this career?

A move from the pharmacy industry 5 years ago allowed me to pursue a love of numbers whilst still being able to help people achieve their goals

What is your greatest work achievement?

Achieving a merit in the Chartered Accountants program in the Management unit, and being able to use those skills and my life experience to help our clients not just with the numbers but all types of business problems that arise.

Are you task/goal or more people/relationship focused?

My TriMetrix report shows that whilst I am predominantly task focussed I like to collaborate with people to achieve an outcome.  I have a steady and methodical attitude to my work whilst being able to be empathetic to people’s situations and pressures.

What gets you motivated and is important to you?

High Aesthetic and Individualistic motivators mean that I am determined and competitive, will take responsibility for my actions and look for and appreciate the beauty in things.

What has been the most important innovation you have witnessed in your lifetime?

The Snuggie

If you could invite any 3 people to dinner, who would they be and why?

Stephen Fry – he would be ‘Quite Interesting’

Danielle Bregoli – her life achievements would be fascinating to dissect

Selena Gomez – great voice

What Netflix series would you recommend?

Gilmore Girls

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Corey Kirby- Business Advisor

B.Comm (Acc). CA

  1. What do you enjoy doing?

Business Advisory and working with start-up businesses. I enjoy putting all of the pieces of a puzzle together and figuring out different ways to solve problems or look at an issue. Working with start-ups or completing a feasibility analysis is like putting all of the pieces of the puzzle together to provide the customer with the best information possible to make a decision.

  1. Why did you start this career?

I had to choose between Accounting and PE during Year 12 as classes clashed and chose accounting. Haven’t looked back. I also wasn’t good enough to make the AFL as a player and thought I could be a sports administrator instead.

  1. What is your greatest work achievement?

Winning our AFL Tipping Competition back-to-back although I have fallen into a form slump recently.

  1. Are you task/goal or more people/relationship focused?

Task/Goal focused. Not a big fan of people! Kidding. I like to build relationships with people over time, when you have a high level of trust with someone then I feel we can really flourish as advisors.

  1. What gets you motivated and is important to you?

Winning and being the best I can be. I am a high individualistic and high utilitarian person. I am competitive and driven although some may say I have softened since having a daughter.

  1. What has been the most important innovation you have witnessed in your lifetime?

Twitter. I can spend all day on Twitter and it is a therapeutic ranting platform when Collingwood/Arsenal lose.

  1. If you could invite any 3 people to dinner, who would they be and why?

Arsene Wenger, Nathan Buckley and Phil Knight (Nike President)

  1. What Netflix series would you recommend?

House of Cards (US). This may have something to do with being a High Individualistic/High Utilitarian person.

Madeline Wallis
Marketing Director

What do you enjoy doing?

Learning and keeping up with a fast moving Social Media world. It amazes me how powerful it has become and the impact it has on our day to day lives as individuals and as businesses.

Why did you start this career?

I originally started to gain experience in a full time receptionist position after completing VCE but soon realised the workplace I was in would challenge and help me grow.

What is your greatest work achievement?

Commencing work at MTA as a Receptionist and now working as a Personal Assistant and Marketing Director. Also being involved with our recent re-brand.

Are you task/goal or more people/relationship focused?

I love being around people, building relationships (just having a gasbag really) but if a task is set to me, it will be completed on time and to the best of my ability.

What gets you motivated and is important to you?

I am the most motivated when I’m organised and have something to achieve. Being able to socialize and build relations while maintaining current ones is important to me.

What has been the most important innovation you have witnessed in your lifetime?

Facebook. It’s changed the world forever. The way you can connect with people all over the world and promote business for free.

If you could invite any 3 people to dinner, who would they be and why?

James Corden, I love his sense of humour and I’d volunteer to help get him to work in a car pool karaoke. Sally McLean to laugh, chat and see her bright green trackies one more time and Billie (my dog).

What Netflix series would you recommend?

Riverdale

Carolyn Darke
Receptionist

What do you enjoy doing?

I have been with MTA Accounting for three years and love everything about my job. We are a very close knit team, we support, encourage and genuinely care for each other, just like a big happy family. I enjoy the contact I have with our clients, they are all awesome! And who knew, I actually enjoy working with numbers…. go figure! I love music, any kind really, I also love baking for the guys here, they are so easily pleased and I love anything related to arts and creativity. I suppose I should also say I enjoy my gym membership but that would be a lie so I won’t say that. I love nothing more than having a glass of bubbly in hand, spending time with my wonderful friends and family.

Why did you start this career?

I was very lucky to be offered my position here. Matthew saw something in me, some potential I suppose, even though I had never worked in this industry before. I’m so thankful he gave me the opportunity to join his team.

What is your greatest work achievement?

My greatest work achievement is persevering until I had this accounting thing worked out. It was all very new to me. I enjoy the constant learning, the support I have is invaluable.

Are you task/goal or more people/relationship focused?

I am definitely people/relationship focused although I do have goals I’m attempting to achieve, refer to above gym membership comment…  I enjoy fostering close relationships within our team, making work a fun, supportive place to be every day.

What gets you motivated and is important to you?

Being a strong, efficient support to the Accountants here is important to me, my motivation comes from them. The feedback I receive is motivating, I’m always wanting to do my best for them, they’re so busy.

What has been the most important innovation you have witnessed in your lifetime?

Most important innovation for me? There are so many but what has really changed my life are Teflon coated baking tins and Bluetooth speakers. Running a close third would have to be Shellac nail polish oh and of course the piccolo bottles of bubbly…a little less guilt!!!

If you could invite any 3 people to dinner, who would they be and why?

Three people I would invite to dinner… Number one, Johnny Depp – I would ask him nicely to come in his Jack Sparrow get up, need I say more!! Number two – Jimmy Barnes, I know we would get along like a house on fire and Number three… I can’t chose between Ed Sheeran and James Bay, perhaps they could form a duo, that counts as one.. right?

What Netflix series would you recommend?

I’ve just finished watching Vikings on Netflix, once I got past the blood the story was fabulous. Orange is the new Black was good too, now I’m sticking to cooking shows for a while, less violence, although having said that some chefs are scary!!

Danielle Riding
Technical Services Manager

What do you enjoy doing?

I enjoy people and I enjoy helping people. I like finding ways to help others and I like sharing my skills and knowledge with others.

Why did you start this career?

Early on in my working life I worked in retail but always ended up completing the back of house tasks around bookkeeping and stock inwards. Once I returned to Ballarat after working in Melbourne I only applied for Accounts and Payroll work and have now been working in this field for about 15 years.

What is your greatest work achievement?

My greatest work achievement is the friendships I have formed. Some of my closest friends were once my co-workers. I love going to work and doing a good job and I value building relationships with the people you spend a vast majority of your week with.

Are you task/goal or more people/relationship focused?

Absolutely people and relationship focused. Though I don’t mind a list to keep me on task!

What gets you motivated and is important to you?

My Family, my husband Anthony and two boys Lachie & Liam. They keep me busy all year round and my favorite past time is spending time with them and enjoying their company.

What has been the most important innovation you have witnessed in your lifetime?

Definitely the smart phone – I cant go 5 minutes without pulling it out to take a photo, pay a bill or check out the latest on social media! BUT as a mother I am also very grateful for the disposable nappy! I still remember cloth nappies and the multiple buckets my mum used to clean them and I am forever grateful I was spared this ritual….YUK!

If you could invite any 3 people to dinner, who would they be and why?

Jane Austen – to discuss all things Mr Darcy

Zac Efron – because every good dinner party needs some eye candy

Sir David Attenborough – the best storyteller around, he would keep me captivated all night

What Netflix series would you recommend?

Stranger Things – Captivating but I’m still confused…