645: The Investor Came Knocking | Glenn Schiffman, CFO, IAC

There’s little question that 2020 will long be remembered as a year of crisis for the casino industry. Commercial gaming revenues in the U.S. were down 79 percent during the second quarter when compared to Q2 2019, a fact that made IAC/Interactive’s August announcement that it was purchasing 12 percent of hospitality and gambling giant…
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COVID Keeps People Top of Mind Among Business Leaders

More keenly aware of the competitive price of employee burnout and workforce attrition — many midsize companies are today busy rethinking how they attract, hire and inspire employees.The Workplace Champions Podcast explores the innovative workforce practices of talent-minded business leaders tasked with opening a new chapter of growth for their midsize organizations.
Listen to the Episode Below (00:41:58)

644: Thwarting COVID By Rethinking Opportunities | Mike Brower, CFO Office Evolution

Back in the late 1980s, Mike Brower’s list of audit clients included a roster of oil and gas companies as well a local university and a number of different state and local government entities. It was the type of client list that any accountant based in and around Cheyenne, Wyoming, might covet, a fact made…
Listen to the Episode Below (00:48:12)

643: The Rise of People-Centric Finance | Katie Rooney, CFO, Alight Solutions

Back in 2015, Katie Rooney was only 7 months into her first industry CFO role at Aon when her boss asked her to exit the office. “He came into my office on November 1 and said, ‘I’m retiring, and I want you to take on my role. I’m leaving in 8 weeks,’” recalls Rooney, who…
Listen to the Episode Below (00:29:49)

642: The Virtues of Top Line Growth | Sachin Patel, CFO, Apixio

It’s not uncommon for career-building executives inside the finance realm to obtain an MBA in order to pivot their careers in a new direction. Such was the case for Sachin Patel, who after finding some early success as a systems engineer at IBM Corp. began to study the path before him more closely. “One of…
Listen to the Episode Below (00:30:58)

641: The IPO Playbook & Creating Opportunity for Others | Steve Cakebread, CFO, Yext

“It’s not cheap to go public,” concedes CFO Steve Cakebread, echoing the oft-repeated refrain that founders and CFOs confront when considering the prospect of selling shares in their companies to the public. Concessions aside, it will come as little surprise to Wall Street and private investors alike that Cakebread—a seasoned finance leader who has taken…
Listen to the Episode Below (00:31:03)

640: Communicating Your Strategic Plan | James Samuels, CFO, EXUMA Biotech

Jamie Samuels still recalls some of the raised eyebrows that he saw after having completed in short order both the verbal and written portions of an exam that his future employer administered to job applicants. Not unlike many of his fellow applicants, Samuels had been invited to take the exam after responding to a newspaper…
Listen to the Episode Below (00:40:03)

639: Thriving in the Deep End | Catherine Birkett, CFO, GoCardless

Back in the early 2000s, Catherine Birkett found herself being pulled into confidential meetings where her company’s senior management was discussing restructuring plans with the company’s largest investor. The company—a fiber optics telecom firm known as Interoute—was not yet 6 years old, but its days appeared to be numbered as the company sought to weather…
Listen to the Episode Below (00:38:46)

638: The Path to Being Cost Smart | Jim Gray, CFO, Ingredion

It’s the type of business restructuring capable of striking envy in the hearts of many a company board member—and particularly those known to favor one oft-repeated bit of business wisdom: Never waste a recession. At food ingredient maker Ingredion, where the recession’s bite is directly linked to the eating habits of consumers, a 2-year-old restructuring strategy…
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637: Experiencing the Market Economy Spirit | Tom Fencl, CFO, Pricefx

The son of two doctors, Tom Fencl recalls that while growing up in communist Czechoslovakia, to him a free market economy was more “an intellectual curiosity” than a possible career destination. “When the Berlin Wall came down, I was midway through high school—it was a very formative experience,” remembers Fencl, who says that the historic…
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