“I see a little bit of my parents in all my clients,” says Cayenne MacHarg, a bookkeeper with Reconciled. Even though she doesn’t own a small business herself, Cayenne brings an appreciation for the demands that business owners face to all her clients. Growing up with parents who were small business owners in Vermont allowed her to see the day-to-day life of a business owner up close.
“People like to joke about accounting being soul-crushing and boring,” says Cayenne, “but it’s really strangely satisfying. Their financial health is a critical component of whether a business succeeds.” For Cayenne, the ability to work with different clients in unique situations keeps things constantly interesting and challenging. “You get to work as part of a team with the business and figure out the system that works for them and you. It feels good to be that close with a business, to help them puzzle through a tough time and then walk alongside them during their successes.
Cayenne didn’t start with a plan to be a bookkeeper, but when a friend suggested that she might enjoy it — and be good at it — Cayenne left her food sciences degree behind and took over the bookkeeping for her parents’ businesses. Eventually, she left her parents’ company to work for their CPA, providing small business services and doing payroll and bookkeeping. At the CPA firm, Cayenne built the deep knowledge base for the work she does now. After spending a year working as an in-house bookkeeper at a startup, she joined the Reconciled team in 2016.
All of Cayenne’s current clients are involved in the food and beverage industry, but they each have distinct challenges. Cayenne works closely with them to help navigate questions like charging the appropriate sales tax, referring them to an accountant when necessary. Making sure her clients feel well taken care of is crucial for Cayenne, so while she promises to respond to emails within 24 hours, she also happily hands out her cell phone number for urgent texts. Her clients, she says, are wonderful, considerate people. No one has ever abused that privilege.
Reconciled’s work-from-home flexibility is one of the things that drew Cayenne to the company, but she often finds herself heading into Reconciled’s headquarters. With three kids under seven at home, she gets more work done at the office. On the weekends, she takes advantage of everything Vermont has to offer — running, biking, hiking, and skiing with her family.
After growing up with business owners and now providing bookkeeping to them, Cayenne is still in awe of the Vermont business community. “When you own a business here, you become part of a community of business owners, and you also build your own community around your business. There’s nothing like being able to be a part of that.”