The Outward-Facing CFO: Identifying Opportunities to Spur Growth - DC Roundtable Discussion


March 20, 2013


7:30AM EST


Congressional Country Club
8500 River Road
Bethesda, MD 20817

CPE Credits: 0

Hosted by The CFO Alliance

Cost: Free for Executive Members
$29.50 for Plus Members
$59.00 for Basic Members
First-Time Roundtable Attendees may register free of charge.

Registration for this event is closed.

The Outward-Facing CFO: Identifying Opportunities to Spur Growth
Facilitator: Dr. Sonia Ketkar, George Mason University

Despite domestic and global economic headwinds, uncertainty and instability, CFOs have an opportunity create value for their organizations under these circumstances by ensuring that critical initiatives are adequately resourced, clearly aligned to deliver financial results, and that organizations have a disciplined approach for measuring results throughout the organization.

Despite their cautiously optimistic outlook for 2013, CFOs expressed continued concern about the global economy and a growing lack of confidence in the U.S. government. According to those surveyed in the 2013 CFO Sentiment Study, the global economy represents a continued risk to overall performance. Professor Sonia Ketkar will lead us through an interactive discussion on how the continued European economic issues will affect the US economy and US Businesses.

Join our Greater Washington DC community as we collectively identify opportunities and actions to Spur Growth in 2013.

In 2012, our CFO Alliance discussions have continued to demonstrate that as more middle-market CFOs begin looking outward to help their companies grow, more Global business communities are looking inward to those U.S. companies that can best help them to add jobs and better drive their economies. However, not all communities — and CFOs, for that matter — are aware of the many collaborative approaches now being taken to unlock economic growth. Our CFOA discussions continue to reveal a broad menu of possibilities for outward-looking CFOs.

Field of study: Economics
Delivery method: Group Live

Learning Objectives:
1. From a policy perspective, how should the US manage the direct and indirect effects of the EU crisis and global interdependencies?

  1. There are two main challenges for today’s corporate managers: How to achieve more with less (e.g. manpower, capital, other inputs) and How to manage and tackle global competition How can your company respond to these challenges?

Blog Post: Finance Leaders Report Growing “Economic Disconnect” as CFO Confidence Wanes
By CFO Alliance Editor on Wednesday, November 9

We heard it up in Boston and down in Charlotte. We heard it last month in Phoenix and this month in Philadelphia. It’s what the CFO in the video clip below refers to simply as “a disconnect,” but clearly there is much to fear from such a widespread loss of CFO confidence.

When CFO confidence is lagging, so too are critical investments in corporate growth activities, such as hiring, M&A, and R&D, all of which are sorely needed for a true “recovery” to get under way.

“We’re having a horrible time trying to predict where our revenues are going to be. I can do a pretty good cost budget today, but that very top line, it feels weak,” said Doug Klein, a CFOA Phoenix chapter member as he supplied a report back for his table at the recent discussion “Recession or Recovery: What’s a CFO to Do?”
“The statistics say that it ought to be at least a good or solid year, but it doesn’t feel right to me. So there’s a disconnect from this sort of general feeling where everybody’s gets on board in saying that it’s going to be a great year,” explained Klein.

Asked what exactly would help to restore CFO confidence in the economy, another Phoenix chapter member quickly replied: “New POs from purchasing customers — that would give me confidence to predict a top line, or at least potential sales. We don’t have what we need.”

Which leads me to a question for our broader CFOA membership: When it comes to projecting a top line, what could help to restore your confidence in how the economy is going?

Facilitator: Dr. Sonia Ketkar

Sonia Ketkar is Co-Director at the Center for Emerging Market Policies and Assistant Professor at the School of Public Policy at George Mason University. Her research publications and projects focus on multinational firm strategies related to internationalization, disinvestment and emerging markets. Her academic contributions include book chapters in the Handbook of International Marketing and the Future of Global Business, among others. She is on the editorial board of the Journal of International Commerce, Business and Policy and also frequently reviews for leading academic journals in the field of international business. She has taught abroad in Panama and in executive programs in Poland.

From 2007-2010, she served as an Advisor on the Board at TowsonGlobal, an international business incubator based in Maryland. Her professional experience includes a stint with the multinational firm, Bridge (now Thomson Reuters) in Mumbai, India. Most recently (2010-2011), she was Vice President of the Washington DC chapter of BGS, an international honor society for excellence in business programs and education. She has been invited to speak at various national and international events on issues related to trade and global supply chains, outsourcing, entrepreneurship and emerging markets. She has been interviewed by the Center for International Private Enterprise and others on similar topics. She is a member of the Academy of Management, the Academy of International Business and the India-US World Affairs Institute.

Sonia holds a PhD in International Business Administration from Temple University and Masters and Bachelors degrees from the University of Pune in India.

Related Knowledge

  • Presentation: Outward Facing CFO - March 20 Washington DC Roundtable - Sonia Ketkar
  • Greater Washington DC CFO Alliance members met in Bethesda, MD on Wednesday, 3/20/13 to share thoughts and insights around how to identify growth opportunities in the face of domestic and global economic headwinds. Dr. Sonia Ketkar, Assistant Professor at the School of Public Policy at George Mason University who identified for company growth in the current economic environment: How to achieving more growth with fewer resources ( manpower, capital, etc.), How to effectively manage global competition.

    These challenges exist in any economic climate, but the reward in converting these challenges into growth opportunities is directly correlated with the intensity of economic headwinds. The two questions posed to CFOs for breakout discussions were as follows:
    1. How can your company respond to these challenges?
    2. How can US policies play a role in supporting its economy and businesses in meeting the challenges?

    Conversations gravitated toward the question around how to respond to the headwinds in the current economy and still drive growth. More specifically, how can you grow your business while cutting cost?

  • Presentation: Leveraging your Ecosystem to Create a Value Constellation
  • CFO Alliance-NYC Members braved the weather and met on Monday, March 19th to discuss how to leverage their business ecosystems to drive company growth. What these CFOs discovered was an innovative strategy to identify and define growth opportunities with nothing more than a comprehensive mapping of their company’s competitive landscape. The technique of defining a value constellation for a given set of products and services, communicated so eloquently by Brenda Tsai, Commercial Leader, GE Capital, may do nothing less than change the way that many middle market companies approach business development and strategic planning in an increasingly dynamic economy.

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Event Attendees

  • Robert P. Hostetler, National Managing Partner - CFO Services at Tatum, a division of Randstad ,
  • Kellie Kim, Chief Financial Officer at Astrium Services Government Inc,
  • Stanley Berman, Chief Financial Officer at Lutheran Services in America, Incorporated,
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