David Luftman – The Sak Brand Group: The Winding Path to Accounting
Posted on August 25, 2018 by Liang McIntosh-Yee
David Luftman was originally on track to work in the field of psychology when he made the switch to accounting. While studying at Binghamton University, he noticed he was drawn to the research and statistical analysis aspects of psychology. The psychology research projects he embarked upon during his studies only reinforced his passion for data analysis while his pragmatic side helped him identify that accounting would allow for him to utilize his analytical skills and have immediate employment opportunities post-graduation. He decided he could take advantage of Binghamton’s highly regarded business school to transition towards an accounting degree.
After graduating with an accounting master’s and psychology bachelor’s, Luftman landed a position with Ernst & Young in New York City. He served as a senior accountant before parlaying his education and experience into controller positions with a series of start-up companies between 2000 and 2013. In April of 2013, he joined The Sak Brand Group, accepting the position of corporate controller that he holds today.
California Style at the Heart of The Sak Brand Group
According to Luftman, one of the best things about working for The Sak is its laid-back family-friendly corporate culture. This fits with the company’s brand image, which fully embraces the Southern California lifestyle. Luftman appreciates that the company puts its focus on getting the work done, whether that means employees are in the office from nine a.m. to six p.m. every day or working flexible hours from home.
“The emphasis isn’t on the face time, it’s on the end-product of getting your work done,” Luftman says. “I feel it’s a positive, open environment.”
The Value of Family Time at The Sak
Family time is important to Luftman, so he’s grateful to work for a company that encourages work-life balance. His children are in middle school now, so his activities tend to revolve around youth sports, including serving as a coach for his children’s teams. At one time he coached soccer, basketball, and travel softball, but these days he’s only coaching softball. He’s also fortunate to have a spouse who helps keep him grounded.
“I would say, happiness is probably the key and then it just kind of cycles down from there,” Luftman says about what he and his wife hope to achieve in life. “Try to eliminate the unnecessary drama and pursue activities or adventures that bring you and your family joy.”
Staying Focused on Passionate Things and Not Letting Setbacks Knock You off the Path
In addition to steering clear of unnecessary drama, Luftman also believes in finding a way to avoid stressing over things that fall outside of his control. Instead of worrying about the little things, he believes it’s more important to focus his energy on things he feels passionate about. This philosophy helps him fit within the laid-back work culture at The Sak, where employees feel strongly about the work they’re doing but try to take setbacks in stride.
“Work hard to try to live within that realm of what you can control and understand that there are certain things that may happen that are negative, that you just have to learn how to deal with,” Luftman says.
Being a numbers person serves Luftman well at The Sak Brand Group, where he has helped bring technology to the company’s accounts payable processes. Working alongside other visionaries at the company, he hopes to continue to improve productivity by finding the most efficient processes to help serve the company’s thriving customer base.