Finance

Podcast # 37: What makes a great CFO

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From Business Rhythm with Frank & Jamie – “A CFO is a member of the senior management team. Contrary to popular conception, his job is not confined to the traditional financial services functions such as accounting or treasury. His role is broad. He is expected to be strategic and to carry out a number of similar functions of a CEO. A CFO understands business operations and knows the drivers of company value. He can translate the financial impact of business decisions and guide the rest of the company towards profitability.”

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Fresh Pick of the Day, October 26, 2016: “The Best-Performing CEOs in the World”

From Harvard Business Review Online – “There are so many reasons for leaders to focus on the short term: slow growth, shareholder activism, political turmoil—to name just a few. Yet some CEOs still manage to train their sights on the long term and deliver strong performance over many years. Our 2016 list of top performers reveals who they are.”

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Fresh Pick of the Day, September 29, 2016: “The Right Way to Take Risks — in Business and Life”

From Knowledge@Wharton – “What I tried to do in my book is describe these tenets of risk-taking that apply across business and investing in life. There are four tenets: right-sizing the risk; right-timing; relying on knowledge and experience; and remaining skeptical of promises and projections. Those apply to investing tremendously. I think all the time about the right size of the positions that we take in companies; whether it’s the right time, because timing of when you buy or sell is critically important. How much we know about the investment, and then being skeptical about what we hear from Wall Street or what we might hear from the companies. But if you think about how we apply those in our life, take just some simple examples.

Right-sizing: If you’re going to buy a house, you want to make sure that you’ve got a house that’s the right size, not too big, not too small. Otherwise, it will be a mistake. It’s getting a mortgage that’s of a size you can handle; the size of your investment in that property is really important. So that’s something that everybody deals with involving size, whether you’re buying a house or you’re renting a place. There are four tenets: right-sizing the risk; right-timing; relying on knowledge and experience; and remaining skeptical of promises and projections.

Right-timing: You definitely don’t want to open an ice cream shop in November, if you have a choice. If you’re living in the Northeast, or you’re living in Philadelphia, you would rather open it in April or May. Timing affects many decisions, no matter what they are. When you’re getting married, when you’re getting engaged, when you’re having children, timing is just a factor. Sometimes it’s more important or less, but it’s definitely a risk factor.

Relying on knowledge and experience: You don’t want to, for example, take on an intern at your show if that person has only worked in an art gallery, and they say, ‘Oh, but I’m really, really interested in broadcasting and radio’ but they’ve shown no interest before. Is that something you should know about or not? I would say yes, because it’s a risk that you hire somebody who isn’t capable and doesn’t show any aptitude. So you’re relying on knowledge and experience.

Remaining skeptical: If you’ve got a buddy and you’re out to dinner with him, and he says, ‘I’ve got a great new idea for a restaurant and bar that I would like to open downtown, and I would like you to invest this many thousands of dollars.’ If you don’t ask a few questions about that, it would be pretty illogical. You better not be too credulous and say, ‘Hey, Jason’s a great guy, I really think that he’ll be a great bar owner.’ That would be silly — and it would be a lot of risk. That’s exposure to danger and uncertainty; that’s what risk is. You do need to be exposed to uncertainty to make any money or to make the right decision, but if you don’t think through why it might go wrong, you would be pretty gullible.”

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Business Rhythm Podcast # 33: “Impact investing in developing countries”

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From Business Rhythm with Frank & Jamie – “According to the World Economic Forum, impact investing is not an asset class but a specific approach to investing. To be more precise, impact investing has two elements. First, it aims to target both impact, whether it is development, social or environment, and financial returns; and second, it involves the active the measurement of both impact and financial returns.”

 

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Fresh Pick of the Day, June 29, 2016: “Brexit: Five consequences | FT World ”

From FT.com  – “What are the consequences for the UK and the EU after the Brexit vote?”

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Fresh Pick of the Day, June 23, 2016: “The end of the Chinese miracle | FT Features “

From Financial Times Features – “China’s economic miracle is under threat from a slowing economy and a dwindling labour force. The FT investigates how the world’s most populous country has reached a critical new chapter in its history. Jamil Anderlini narrates.”

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Fresh Pick of the Day, March 2, 2016: “Southeast Asian economies grow, but prospects unclear”

From Nikkei Asian Review – ” Most economies in Southeast Asia are still chugging along, but the region’s economic outlook is unclear and downside risks are multiplying.      The combined gross domestic product of the five largest economies in the region grew by 4.4% in the October-December quarter compared with the previous three months, according to the Asian Development Bank. The pace of growth accelerated by 0.2 point from the July-September quarter. The ADB estimates for Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand are based on government data.”

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Podcast # 24: “Business Rhythm’s Best Business Narrative Books” with Frank & Jamie

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Business Rhythm’s Top 5 Business Narrative Books:

1. McDonald’s: Behind the Arches by John F. Love

2. Personal History by Katharine Graham

3. Titan: The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr. by Ron Chernow

4. Sam Walton: Made in America by Sam Walton

5. When Genius Failed by Roger Lowenstein

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