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AFP Conversations

Andrew Deichler, Multimedia Content Manager for AFP, interviews corporate treasury and finance executives about their latest challenges and insights. Topics include blockchain, fintech, cybersecurity, payments, risk, FP&A, career development, and more.
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Mar 31, 2021

The common term “implicit bias” refers to attitudes or stereotypes that adversely impact or influence one’s understanding, actions and decisions in an unconscious way. But how are these implicit biases manifested and what are their impact on an organization’s culture?

In this episode of AFP Conversations, Jenny Okonkwo, president of Transform Consulting and founder of Black Female Accountants Network, a volunteer led professional women's network with membership across Canada, the UK, the U.S., and Europe, discusses the important topic of implicit bias and her experience fostering diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) initiatives.

From a diversity and inclusion standpoint, Okonkwo deeps dives into how individuals can mitigate against implicit or unconscious bias to attract a quality workforce, build quality teams and lower retention as an organization.

Okonkwo also provides listeners with tools for managers and leaders to get outside of their bubbles and reflect on their own biases, advice for how organizations can create long-lasting equitable solutions, and ways to develop an organization-wide DEI strategy.

Read Okonkow’s article, Implicit Bias in the Workplace, and visit the AFP DEI Resources page for more information.

Mar 1, 2021

What if financial professionals could have access to information that has previously been unknown, like what others are thinking and feeling? Dan Seidman, Managing Director of Read Emotions, believes that reading hidden emotions is a behavioral science that can be applied to managing, coaching and business partnering.

In this episode of AFP Conversations, Bryan Lapidus, FPAC, AFP’s Director of FP&A Practice, is joined by Seidman to discuss how recognizing the emotions others feel during critical meetings is key to increasing empathy and rapport.

As finance engages with a variety of business partners with different agendas, priorities, and points of view, sustained success in this area requires the ability to build constructive relationships. Listen as Seidman explains how to apply these skills in the business arena – both in-person and online – to improve emotional intelligence.

Seidman will be speaking at AFP FinNext 2021 Virtual for the session, “Read (Hidden) Emotions: The Science Behind a New Skill.” Click here to learn more about the event, taking place March 23 – 25.

Mar 1, 2021

In 2020, AARP was awarded the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, the nation’s highest recognition for performance excellence that a U.S. organization can receive. Specifically, the Baldrige committee praised AARP’s Enterprise Dashboard, which enables leaders to sustain a focus on achieving the organization’s key objectives: grow impact, grow relevance, grow revenue and engage workforce, driving down to individual performance objectives.

Scott Frisch, AARP’s EVP and COO, was one of the prime drivers of this work. In this episode of AFP Conversations, Bryan Lapidus, FPAC, AFP’s Director of FP&A Practice, is joined by Frisch to discuss the strategy and tactical implementation – including statistical models and organizational staffing – to create a North Star for the entire enterprise.

Frisch will be speaking at AFP FinNext 2021 Virtual for the session, “Data Dashboard for Total Impact.” Click here to learn more about the event, taking place March 23 – 25.

Mar 1, 2021

Traditionally, finance has been about creating numbers and capturing data for a business. But how can we share that insight to stay relevant to business stakeholders?

In this episode of AFP Conversations, Bryan Lapidus, FPAC, AFP’s Director of FP&A Practice, is joined by Jesper Sorensen, co-author of Implementing an Analytics Culture for Data Driven Decisions, to discuss the changes required within finance to reach its aspirations of providing actionable insight to the business.

Sorensen explains that the future of finance requires a roadmap on how to integrate business partnering skills, data science thinking and analytics tools, and an understanding of strategic thinking. This episode will further examine the principles and practice behind the transformation of a global finance department into an analytics business partner, and the resulting return in investment in terms of dollars, job security and career advancement.

Sorensen will be speaking at AFP FinNext 2021 Virtual alongside Larry Mizel for the session, “Becoming an Analytics Business Partner.” Click here to learn more about the event, taking place March 23 – 25.

Feb 23, 2021

In this episode of AFP Conversations, Jim Kaitz, President and CEO of AFP, is joined by Erica Dhawan, globally recognized leadership expert and AFP FinNext 2021 Virtual Closing Keynote, to preview her keynote: “Leading Digitally: Foster Human Engagement at Work.”

As the founder and CEO of Cotential and co-author of the bestselling book Get Big Things Done: The Power of Connectional Intelligence, Dhawan teaches leaders 21st century collaboration skills and behaviors and is the world’s leading authority on Connectional Intelligence.

While remote collaboration and digital learning can be successful in the COVID-19 era, it can also be challenging to understand tone, body language and other non-verbal cues that provide meaningful context to communication. In this episode, Dhawan deep dives into new rules, tactics and nuances for effective digital body language to create intellectual and emotional connections – no matter the distance.

To learn more about digital body language, check out Dhawan’s best practice toolkit at ericadhawan.com/dbl and get a copy of her book at ericadhawan.com/digitalbodylanguage.

Dhawan is the Closing Keynote at the AFP FinNext Virtual 2021, taking place March 23 – 25. Click here to learn more about the event.

Feb 2, 2021

In this episode of AFP Conversations, Jim Kaitz, CEO of AFP, is joined by author, lecturer, and AFP FinNext Virtual Conference Opening Keynote, Hal Gregersen to preview his keynote: "Navigating Uncertainty Through the Power of Inquiry."

Ranked as one of the world’s 25 most influential management thinkers by Thinkers50, Gregersen has dedicated his career to finding out what kind of skills, corporate culture and practices produce innovative powerhouses. 

Gregersen is the Opening Keynote at FinNext Virtual 2021, taking place March 23 - 25. Click here to register for the event.

Dec 11, 2020

In this special episode of AFP Conversations, best-selling author and journalist Eric Weiner joins AFP President and CEO Jim Kaitz speaks with to discuss his latest book, "The Socrates Express: In Search of Life Lessons from Dead Philosophers." Kaitz and Weiner attempt to gauge how some of the greatest philosophers throughout history would approach the challenges of today. Although we currently face a monumental crisis, some of history's greatest minds would likely advise us to focus on the things we can change, and accept the ones we can't.

AFP would like to thank Eric Weiner for joining us in this special episode. If you would like to learn more about Eric or his latest book, please visit ericweinerbooks.com.

Dec 8, 2020

This episode of AFP Conversations explores the insights covered in the 2020 AFP Asia-Pacific (APAC) Treasury Management Handbook, sponsored by Kyriba. Released by AFP in collaboration with China National Association of Finance Companies, the Association of Corporate Treasurers Singapore, and the Japan Association for Chief Financial Officers, the handbook provides an overview of the elements of treasury management and includes guidance on the core tasks of a regional treasury center.

Dory Malouf, Senior Principal Value Engineer for Kyriba, joins the podcast to discuss the themes explored in the handbook.

 

Oct 14, 2020

In this episode of AFP Conversations, financial influencer, speaker, author and podcast host, Sheri Fitts of ShoeFitts Marketing will be discussing personal branding. With more than 25 years in the financial services industry, she is an expert in leveraging marketing, branding and a fine-tuned digital strategy to help financial professionals attract the right clients, increase revenue, retain relationships, and navigate the online world.

At AFP 2020, Fitts will be leading the session, Surviving in the Overwired World, in which she'll discuss how financial professionals can stay focused and productive amid so many electronic distractions.

This podcast is part of the new AFP Career Hub series. The Career Hub features career coaches, resume services, our job board and more to help you take the next step in your career.

Oct 5, 2020

This episode of AFP Conversations focuses on how financial professionals manage change, which is something they’ve had to do a lot of lately. With entire workforces operating remotely, there’s never been a better time to adopt a new mindset. And there’s no one better to help you develop that new mindset than AFP 2020 FP&A Keynote Amy Vetter, CEO of the B3 Method Institute and DRISHTIQ Yoga. This is Amy’s second time joining the podcast. In this episode, she provides a preview of her upcoming session.

Sep 30, 2020

To be successful, chief financial officers and treasurers need to be true leaders who invest in the professional development of their teams. That requires seeking out exceptional talent and helping those individuals grow their skillsets so that they can make the organization more resilient.

In this episode of AFP Conversations, Jim Kaitz, President and CEO of AFP, discusses professional development with Mark McGivney, Chief Financial Officer of Marsh and McLennan Companies. McGivney has held a number of senior financial management positions since joining the company in 2007. This interview covers the skills that finance professionals will need to continue to be competitive, as well as the short and long-term impact of COVID-19 on finance organizations.

Visit the Career Hub to learn more about how you can take the next step in your career.

Sep 22, 2020

If you’ve attended a career development session at an AFP Conference over the past few years, you’ve probably heard Nicole Meyer speak before. She is Founder and Managing Partner of The Meyer Partnership, a search and advisory firm for Global Financial Services. A former transaction banker, hiring manager and talent recruiter, Meyer created a search firm founded on the principle of bringing the world’s most successful banks and companies together with the very best and relevant candidates.

She’s speaking again this year at AFP 2020. In this episode of AFP Conversations, she discusses how financial professionals can interview in the current environment. This podcast is part of the new AFP Career Hub series. Visit the Career Hub to learn more about how you can take the next step in your career.

Sep 14, 2020

Over the past several months, financial professionals have experienced upheaval in their professional and personal lives. Many have been working from home, adapting their daily schedules to that environment. When you’re handling so many things at once, it can be difficult to manage your time properly.

In this podcast, AFP President and CEO Jim Kaitz discusses the importance of perfect timing with AFP 2020 keynote Daniel Pink. Pink is a New York Times Bestselling author, whose books have won multiple awards and have sold more than 3 million copies worldwide. His latest book, “When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing,” could be an instruction manual for how financial professionals can operate in today’s hectic, work-from-home environment. It delves into the science of timing, which can help us make better decisions and increase our productivity. Pink will be discussing some his findings at the AFP 2020 Virtual Experience in October.

Sep 3, 2020

Alphabet, Google's parent company, is a rapidly growing and dynamic business. To support this growth, Alphabet recognized the need to re-engineer its treasury function. Partnering with SAP, Alphabet launched Project Emerald—a state-of-the-art, non-custom solution that migrated treasury’s processes to the company’s SAP treasury workstation. The success of this in-house solution has paved the way for Alphabet to implement SAP as a single global ERP system for not just treasury, but all corporate functions. Project Emerald was such a success that Alphabet was named a finalist for the AFP 2020 Pinnacle Awards. The Awards, sponsored by MUFG, recognize excellence in treasury and finance. In this episode of AFP Conversations, John Clarke, Assistant Treasurer for Google, discusses Project Emerald.

This year the treasury and finance community gets to select the winner of the Pinnacle Awards, sponsored by MUFG. Our three finalists will be voted on and one Grand Prize Winner will be selected. That Grand Prize Winner will be announced during the AFP 2020 Virtual Experience.

To learn more about our other finalists and to vote for the Pinnacle Awards Grand Prize Winner, visit www.afp2020.org/pinnacle.

Aug 31, 2020

Drager is a leading manufacturer for medical and safety technology products, employing more than 15,000 people worldwide. The company generates revenues of around 2.8 billion Euros, 55% of it in foreign currencies. Drager's portfolio of foreign currencies requires reliable data processing in a highly automated, cost-effective and flexible manner. Until the end of 2019, FX exposures were computed in a highly manual and time-consuming, spreadsheet-based process.

To improve data availability and reliability, Drager automated data processing and the calculation of exposures. Additionally, Drager automated the exposure planning process and created a cost-efficient hedging portfolio. The project was so successful that Drager is one of the finalists for the AFP 2020 Pinnacle Award. In this episode of AFP Conversations, Frank Freitag, Controller of FX Risk Management for Drager, discusses his company's groundbreaking solution. 

This year the treasury and finance community gets to select the winner of the Pinnacle Awards, sponsored by MUFG. Our three finalists will be voted on and one Grand Prize Winner will be selected. That Grand Prize Winner will be announced during the AFP 2020 Virtual Experience.

To learn more about our other finalists and to vote for the Pinnacle Awards Grand Prize Winner, visit www.afp2020.org/pinnacle.

Aug 25, 2020

By now, we all know about Peloton. It is the largest interactive fitness platform in the world, with a loyal community of more than 2 million members. Maybe you're a member yourself. But what you might not realize is how quickly Peloton exploded onto the fitness scene. And because of its meteoric rise, Peloton initially lacked a formalized treasury operation.

In this episode of AFP Conversations, we speak with Dana Laidhold, treasurer for Peloton. She discusses how she joined Peloton in 2018, in the midst of its transformation from a small fitness technology company to a global phenomenon. Laidhold was tasked with quickly building a treasury team that could support the Peloton's rapid growth. It was such a success that Peloton's treasury department is now a finalist for the AFP 2020 Pinnacle Award. The Pinnacle Awards, sponsored by MUFG, recognize excellence in treasury and finance. The grand prize will be announced at AFP 2020 in October.

This year the treasury and finance community gets to select the winner of the Pinnacle Awards. Our three finalists will be voted on and one Grand Prize Winner will be selected. That Grand Prize Winner will be announced during the AFP 2020 Virtual Experience.

To learn more about our other finalists and to vote for the Pinnacle Awards Grand Prize Winner, visit www.afp2020.org/pinnacle.

Aug 12, 2020

Treasury and finance professionals are in a unique position to influence the strategic direction of their organizations. As such, they need certain skills that allow them to influence key decision makers.

AFP 2020 host and spotlight speaker Mark Jeffries joins this episode of AFP Conversations to discuss the art of influencing. An author, communications expert and former Merrill Lynch stockbroker, Jeffries has become a trusted advisor and communications consultant to some of the world's largest and most successful corporations. He's published two books, and has just launched two highly innovative e-learning courses. At AFP 2020, he'll provide financial professionals with an instantly usable toolbox of communication and networking tools designed to help them become strategic influencers.

Register for AFP 2020 here.

Aug 5, 2020

The external market influences and risks that organizations must account for in their planning cycles have never been more chaotic. In this episode of AFP Conversations, AFP 2020 Certification Keynote Mona Sutphen discusses how financial sanctions and investment restrictions are a critical tool in U.S. policy.

Sutphen served as the White House Deputy Chief of Staff under President Barack Obama, and has also been a Managing Director for UBS AG. She has more than 20 years of experience advising Fortune 500 companies on the intersection of geopolitics, policy, and markets. In her upcoming conference session, Sutphen will explain how sanctions can directly and indirectly affect corporate treasury and finance.  

Jul 28, 2020

For treasury and finance professionals, peak performance is no longer optional—it’s foundational. Studies of high performing organizations show that the secret to peak performance is “flow” – an optimal state of consciousness where we feel and perform our best.

In this special edition of AFP Conversations, AFP President and CEO Jim Kaitz discusses flow and peak performance with Steven Kotler, Executive Director of the Flow Research Collective. Kotler is a New York Times bestselling author, an award-winning journalist, and one of the world’s leading experts on high performance. His book “Stealing Fire” was a national bestseller and nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. His previous book, “The Rise of Superman,” was the first book in history to appear on the New York Times bestseller lists in the sports, science, psychology, and business categories simultaneously.

At the AFP 2020 Executive Institute, Kotler will discuss how treasury and finance professionals can harness flow and amplify performance. Using examples drawn from multiple blue-chip enterprises, as well as his own experience working with executives, he will cutting edge neuroscience into practical, applicable steps for organizational transformation.

Jul 13, 2020

Corporate treasury and finance professionals require a quick access to accurate data and the ability to draw insightful analysis to propel their organizations forward. As we navigate this current crisis, forecasting the future has only become more complex and uncertain. So how can we take what seems to be disparate information and reveal the deeper underlying connections?

In this special episode of AFP Conversations, AFP President and CEO Jim Kaitz speaks with Amy Webb, CEO and founder of The Future Today Institute, on how to spot those underlying connections and broader patterns. Webb is one of America's leading quantitative futurists, a professor of strategic foresight at the NYU Stern School of Business, and a bestselling, award-winning author. As the AFP 2020 Mindshift Keynote, she will discuss how treasury and finance professionals can harness futurist strategic tools to benefit their organizations.  

Jul 7, 2020

The 2020 AFP Liquidity Survey was conducted in March 2020, just before the true impact of the coronavirus pandemic was felt in the United States. But even though respondents were surveyed before businesses began closing down, the results revealed cautious attitudes among treasury and finance professionals. In this episode of AFP Conversations, sponsored by Invesco, we discuss the survey results with Laurie Brignac, CIO of the Invesco Global Liquidity Fixed Income Group, and Justo Gonzalez, Invesco's Head of Global Liquidity Research.  

May 26, 2020

Is artificial intelligence the next must-have tool in FP&A’s planning toolkit? AI has the potential to enhance FP&A in four key areas: data cleansing, forecasting and prediction, categorization and scoring, and driver-based planning. That’s because unlike other programs, AI is able to gather information. And the more it does, the more it can think for itself, allowing for endless possibilities in the finance realm.

In this episode of AFP Conversations, sponsored by Santander, Dr. Liran Edelist, President of Jedox; Jamie Cousin, Manager of Financial Planning and Analysis for ServiceMaster; and Bryan Lapidus, FP&A, AFP’s Director of the FP&A Practice; discuss how FP&A is implementing these technologies.

May 18, 2020

Cash forecasting is a difficult task that every treasury department must deal with. Can artificial intelligence help? It has the potential to improve processes, save costs and enhance treasury’s decision-making for liquidity, working capital and currency exposure management. In the latest episode of AFP Conversations, sponsored by Santander, we look at how AI and Big Data are leading the path to powerful decision-support and automation of treasury. Discussing this complex topic are Nicolas Christiaen, CEO & Co-Founder of Cashforce and Ron Chakravarti, Managing Director, Treasury and Trade Solutions for Citi.  

May 5, 2020

In this special edition of the AFP Conversations Podcast, Jim Kaitz, President and CEO of AFP, speaks with skateboarding legend  Tony Hawk. Widely considered to be the greatest in his sport, Hawk started his own foundation, created a video game that inspired a generation, and is the most recognized action sport figure in the world. He'll be appearing at AFP 2021 as the Sunday Keynote speaker, where he'll discuss the importance of maintaining authenticity in your career and in life. In this interview, he provides a preview of his presentation.

AFP 2021 takes place Nov. 7-10 in Washington, DC. The early registration deadline is through June 25, 2021. To learn more about the event and to register, visit AFP2021.org.

Apr 21, 2020

In this special edition of AFP Conversations, members of the AFP 2020 Planning Task Force preview the agenda for the upcoming conference, which will take place in Las Vegas, from October 18-21. 

First, Tracy Butler, CTP, CFO of Sound Transit, provides a preview of the FP&A track. Next, Ray Beasley, CTP, Senior Manager of Treasury for Best Buy, previews the Payments track. After that, Jenifer Herdin, CTP, Vice President of Corporate Treasury for PVH Corp. previews the Treasury Management Track. Last but not least, John Nielsen, CTP, Treasurer for Henniges Automotive, Inc., provides a look at the Capital Markets, Investments and Risk Management track.

For more information on AFP 2020 and to register, go to: AFP2020.org.

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