We promised that this year’s conference would be the best one yet – and we delivered! Our 2016 CFO Talent Show on May 18 was a great success, thanks to our outstanding speakers, dedicated sponsors, enthusiastic attendees, and amazing generosity expressed to the Make-A-Wish of MA & RI.
Far exceeding our original fundraising goals, we were proud to present this wonderful organization with $18,000, allowing wishes to be granted to two seriously ill children this summer!
Here are some highlights to recap the day:
(Click here to view the full day’s agenda)
The day began with our moderator Dwight Griesman, CMO at Radius, and morning keynote speakers John Irvine, CFO, and Bethany Napoli, Global HR Leader, of Current, a start-up within General Electric. With their enlightening presentation, Why Boston?, they shared innovative ideas surrounding their company’s financial strategies, overall culture, and human resources plan. Focusing on Boston’s outstanding reputation in the high tech industry, they also discussed the best ways that inventors and technologists can work together to pave the way for new and exciting ventures to change the environment and power the future.
As our event got underway, John McGuinness, CFO of Predictive Index, gave us some great insight on the necessity of behavioral and cognitive tests during a company hiring process, as he addressed the main drivers behind workplace behaviors with Personality Tests. Take a look at his presentation and see why, in John’s words, “friends don’t let friends make bad hires”.
As an added bonus, we encourage you to go to predictiveindex.com/cfotalentshow to register your team for an assessment and take advantage of the opportunity for an in person executive briefing from a Predictive Index certified partner.
A variety of panel discussions kept the audience engaged. Follow Me: Finding Great Employees The First Time Around was also a success, teaching us ways to change our recruiting practices to complement the pace of our organizational growth. Helpful tips included the importance of creating an honest and candid interviewing process, seeking out local talent, being an inclusive leader, and nurturing a challenging environment for the emerging generation of millennials.
Also joining us was renowned architect Marc Margulies, Principal of Margulies Perruzzi Architects, who discussed how the configuration of office space can have a great impact on work environment and productivity. His presentation, Rethinking Office Design, pointed out a variety of ways to help promote company culture, interoffice collaboration, positive social media, and overall well-being. Some of his ideas included the implementation of mobile work spaces, open areas for interaction, fitness equipment, readily available nutritious snack food, generous flextime, and the placement of motivational inspirations throughout the office. See for yourself how some of his inspiring ideas have worked to improve office designs. As for his general words of advice: Employees should not be the receivers of company culture. They should be the creators.
Our panel discussion When It All Falls Down: Keeping Employees And Productivity Up During A Downturn focused on the essential steps to take to instill “the show must go on” philosophy throughout an organization during tough economic times. Here’s some of the great advice shared by our experts: give employees a sense of value, implement a support system for front-line managers, nurture personal communication, develop substantial retention packages, and turn negatives into
positives, showing your team that staff reductions can ultimately lead to future growth opportunities. And, most important, be able to sit back and “take a punch”.
Also captivating our attention was Julia Cowley, Supervisory Special FBI Agent. Her presentation, The Psychopathic CEO, offered us perspectives on high-level white collar crimes, as she drew from her experiences. We learned that the common traits of this type of criminal include a sense of entitlement, manipulation, lying without remorse, engaging in risky behavior, the need to be influential, and lack of empathy. As for ways to prevent such crimes, she advised us to enforce a strong message conveying to all individuals that their words and actions can be used against them in court.
Next, Anne Lang, Leadership Development Consultant, delivered an interactive, lively presentation on Engaging Your Employees, as she focused on the four most essential principles that contribute to company morale: purpose, belonging, autonomy, and growth. For further details on tapping into and improving your overall team satisfaction, we suggest that you review Ann’s full presentation.
Another fabulous speaker included talent acquisition guru Ed Nathanson, Founder of Red Pill Talent, who offered us tips on recruiting and nurturing the best workers with his insightful presentation, Rebranding Corporate Culture. His words of advice focused on the significance of building upon a sought after business image that reflects the changing times.
Beyond The Benefits: Becoming The Cool Place To Work gave us additional learning opportunities. Our renowned panelists offered plenty of helpful tips on becoming a hot, sought after company, for which everyone would like to work. Some of their ideas included challenging employees outside of their comfort zone, creating a strong company identity, giving team players a sense of purpose, and always being cognizant of attracting and retaining the right fits for your organization. We were also advised that it is crucial to not only continuously conduct interviews with new hires after their start date to get a sense of how they feel, but to also gain useful feedback from exit interviews.
Finally, we concluded the day with Putting It All Together: The Future Of Our Workforce, during which panelists stressed the importance of creating corporate unity, moving with the changing times, nurturing work-life balances, and catering to both an international and multi-generational talent pool.
And, last but not least, we, once again, made a significant impact in the community – this time in the lives of children, as we dedicated this year’s CFO Social For A Cause to the Make-A-Wish of MA & RI. Together we went beyond our fund raising expectations. What a heartwarming and tear jerking moment for all of us as we listened to the experiences of one former recipient family and, then, had the pleasure to present our donation, knowing that we could add happiness, hope, and smiles to the lives of two critically ill youngsters this summer. Thank you to all of our generous Make-A-Wish donors who reminded us that, above all, success is truly defined by the ability to create joyful moments and opportunities for those in need. To us, this portion of the event was truly the pinnacle!
We’d like to give a special nod to our group of dynamic student volunteers – rising stars and future leaders – who worked all-day alongside the CFOLC team.
And lastly, a big thank you to all who made this fabulous day possible: our speakers, our sponsors, our volunteers, and, of course, our attendees. We could not do this without you!
Membership is Open! Learn more about joining the CFO Leadership Council. Members attend all our programs free. Take a look at our list of programs which is updated often. As always, we would love to hear from you and we welcome your comments, thoughts, and feedback, so please don’t hesitate to contact us.