CFO Summit Provides Expert Knowledge on Navigating Year Two of the Pandemic
Author: Kate Koval, Kruggel Lawton CPAs
MIDDLEBURY, INDIANA – If you take care of your people, they will take care of your business. Such was the sentiment of some of the speakers at Kruggel Lawton CPA’s annual CFO Summit held on Thursday, October 28th at the Essenhaus Inn & Conference Center.
The Summit was geared to better equip and inform Chief Financial Officers, Executive Vice Presidents, Controllers, and other Financial professionals on high-level topics such as tax reform, strategic planning, talent retention, assessing technology risk with an emphasis in taking care of people during the pandemic. In case if you missed the event, here are a few of the key themes and biggest takeaways from our presenters in year two of the pandemic.
TOP TAKEAWAYS FOR THRIVING IN YEAR TWO OF THE PANDEMIC
It’s all about people. In manufacturing, health care, and professional service industries alike – all our industries are relationships. People make it happen. If workers can see the big picture and believe in what they’re doing, they will really care.
Be honest. Transparency helps retain people. Team up with employees, vendors, and customers to make relationships that transcend the transaction.
Get ahead of employee burnout. Many front-line professions are in trouble. Do what you can to pay attention to what is happening on the ground level. If the work environment stinks, it doesn’t matter what you pay.
Empower people to make decisions. If you’re going to assess people on their effectiveness, give them the tools and the space to decide for themselves how they’re going to get the work done. If you need to make hard decisions on people’s behalf, establish a panel (including ground-level voices) to deal with transgressions.
Use financial resources effectively. You should always be looking at your financials to identify where there may be waste and find ways to be more cost-effective. If you invest in products, learn their full capabilities and use them.
Think ahead. Regardless of what’s going on around you, you must focus on strategy. If you are only focusing on the present, shake loose. Don’t let the environment scare, distract, or deter you from your strategic plan. Work hard to follow it.
Get creative. Consider exploring new avenues to reach your business goals. If you’re struggling with retention, can you change your established pay structure? Offerings in your benefit plans? Can you offer training or educational support to assist employees in becoming experts in their fields? Be willing to help them along.
Be open-minded. Listen to the needs of your staff. If working from home or holding virtual meetings instead of in-person is important to them (and they are important to you), it may be something that needs to stay around. It may even save time and resources in the process.
Reflect on the positives. Has the pandemic had any silver-lining to you? For some, it served as a reminder of why they choose to do the things they do. For example, being fiscally responsible to keep a healthy reserve of cash. Try it for yourself to see if there are any lessons that can be learned from the last year and a half. Don’t walk away empty-handed.
Be intentional. Healthy businesses stem from healthy people. If you care about your business, your colleagues, your family and your friends, you must find time to also care for yourself.
Special thanks to our speakers, sponsors, and all those who worked hard to make this event memorable and worth-while. It was a truly insightful and thought-provoking experience, and we are grateful for your contribution in making it happen.
Click here to learn more about this year's CFO Summit.
About Kate Koval
Kate is experienced in bookkeeping, audit and tax services with a focus on nonprofit engagements including preparation of Form 990s and consulting.
Kate is a nonprofit management consultant in our client accounting and advisory services team and her areas of service include:
Nonprofit accounting services
Financial statement preparation and analysis
QuickBooks, Bill.com, Expensify consultation
American Institute of Certified Public Accountants
Indiana CPA Society
South Bend Young Professionals Network
Kate enjoys an active lifestyle with her husband, Matt and two daughters. She enjoys traveling, swimming and has a particular passion for great food and wine
Indiana University, South Bend, IN
B.S. in Business, high distinction