Title: “What’s Coming For FEI Post-Pandemic”
Guest: Beth Kurth of FEI Boston / Conway Communications
Interviewers: Jeffrey Davis – MAGE LLC & Evan Macedo – Sapers & Wallack / FEI Boston
Click here to read the transcript
Hello everybody. And welcome back to Radio Entrepreneurs again, and we continue in real time to discuss stories of entrepreneurship in this economy. One of the ways we like to do this on Radio Entrepreneurs is with our partner F E I financial executives international, New England chapter. And that means my co-host for that is Evan Macedo, VP finance, and operations at Sapers & Wallack. Welcome Evan.
Thank you, Jeffrey. It’s a pleasure to be here and I know we have a very exciting show ahead of us.
Great! Would you like to introduce our next guest? Someone I know, you know, very well,
Right? Absolutely. So a, we have the pleasure of having Beth Kurth a with us. She is the partner of Conway Communications and she is not only the partner of Conway Communications, but she’s also going to be the incoming president of FEI. Welcome back.
Thank you. I’m so excited to be here.
We should say I’ve had the Royal coronation music in the background
Next time that would’ve been great.
Jeffrey (1m 1s):
Oh, wow. Congratulations to you. And how long the term is that right?
Beth (1m 8s):
It is a one-year term. I will start July 1st. And if you think about it, how lucky am I? We’re just coming out of COVID we’re just coming out of confinement and we will have the opportunity to bring all our programs and people I R L in real life together, really looking forward to that,
Jeffrey (1m 27s):
You know, it’s so exciting. Well, and FEI. And then when on you, you, you inherit, what are the most successful chapter and the country is, is that correct?
Beth (1m 37s):
That is correct of it. The premier professional organization, trade groups, if you will, for CFOs and senior financial executives. So I’m really honored and really pleased to have this opportunity
Evan (1m 51s):
In, in Beth that I know you, and I know it very well and as well as Jeffrey, but for any of our listeners out there, can you tell us a little bit about what FPI is it does and a, the, what it means to be stepping in to the new role that you are stepping into?
Beth (2m 6s):
Sure. So what FEI is trade organization for CFO’s senior financial execs are people who lead FP and a people who lead the financial practice in their organizations to ensure that their businesses are supported by the financials, and they help make those strategic and tactical decisions to move forward. So those are the people and what kinds of people are they, they are committed, they are career oriented and they are interested in learning and in sharing their information with others. So essentially you join FEI and you have an instant network of people and Jeffery you lead the entrepreneurs’. You knew how important it is to have a network, even at Cypress in wallets, you’re off and putting on programs to help people learn and share.
Beth (2m 52s):
That’s what the FBI does as well.
Jeffrey (2m 55s):
Well, you know, it during COVID, there, weren’t a lot of initiatives as you will not face to face initiatives. So you must have some big plans for the next year. Can you open that door a little bit for us to give us an idea of what we’re in, what’s in store,
Beth (3m 8s):
Right. I will tell you what is in store, but we have to keep it just among us three. Okay. So what is in-store we are going to be looking at big strategic types of information. How do you run your company? How do you make decisions allocate more for R and D are more for marketing? How do you make those decisions and also tactical? So foreign exchange crypto cryptocurrencies back’s is a lot of topics. Now on top of mind for senior financial leaders, that we are going to give our members more ways to connect personally and online with their questions and their insights.
Jeffrey (3m 47s):
And I assume that that will be cyber security, because that just seems to be a big topic to Zurich
Beth (3m 53s):
Cyber-security is a big topic. Absolutely. And even last year we brought in Julia came in, we talked about how important it is to give people when you have an emergency, if you have some sort of risk that you give them hope, and you give them numbers, that you talk about what you’re doing, and we’re going to build on that going into next year
Evan (4m 15s):
And Beth you, and I want you to touch on the point that you just said earlier, that how lucky are you to be coming in, as everything is opening up. That must be a very exciting feeling. What is your, what’s your approach going to be, to have either in person events, virtual events there, some sort of hybrid between the two?
Beth (4m 33s):
Yeah, I mean, that’s such a good question because I think we have really learned to the power of Xoom and how we can, we bring people together on line. So we will absolutely continue to do online events. How easy is it? Right. Pull up a computer. And here we are talking and sharing and learning together. But we also miss, we miss that, seeing people on in person in real life in knowing that we can have a side conversation or we can hand out a business card. And so we will also be having in person events, so both will be available. And we look forward to seeing all of our members at, at both of those types of events.
Jeffrey (5m 16s):
So let’s pretend I’m a CEO, I’m the CFO. And we just got on the elevator together and you introduced yourself to me. And I said, you know, I’ve heard a lot about FEI in, I’ve been wandering over the last, you know, period of time. It should I join? Are, should I not to join? What would just say to me,
Beth (5m 32s):
You should join it. Yeah, of course you should join Jeffrey because you’re a CFO who’s interested in doing better. You’re interested in doing better for yourself, learning more. You’re interested in making sure that your company achieves success and the best way to do that is to learn and listen and to bounce ideas off people who are in a similar situation. And that’s what FEI affords and instant network.
Jeffrey (5m 59s):
Right? Well, that’s pretty good. Evan
Beth (6m 3s):
And PS, if you won it, I know that we are in that elevator. I could press the floor for you if you want to make sure of it okay. Over to you, Evan. Yeah,
Evan (6m 12s):
I know. I think that, I think as is a very exciting initiatives coming up for this year, and I know a lot of us are very excited to get back together. Again, I know that we do have an in-person event coming up this month. It’ll be the first time that we do an in-person event. So I guess I, I, I just wanna leave it with you, you know, do you have any advice that you want to give out to any one that is thinking of wanting, or maybe they’re struggling with the notion of coming to in-person events?
Beth (6m 44s):
Sure. Our first in person event Welcome back Wednesday is pure and networking out door’s. And so if you haven’t yet had the opportunity to be endorsed with people here is a nice starting point. And we would love to see you at some cafe of postdoc, the square parking right below this counted rate after 4:00 PM. So do what everybody has their own comfort level. And so I’m starting out in a way that is comfortable for you. It might be an outdoors event is the way to get started. And then I do think that we will see more and more people participating more and more and bigger and better if that’s
Jeffrey (7m 26s):
So Beth, I know, I know you have a day job as well and at, at, at Conway Communications. And can you tell us a little bit about Conway also?
Beth (7m 35s):
Sure. So we are a boutique investor relations from working with publicly traded companies and companies that are thinking about or student to be public, helping them with the credibility and visibility they need tell their business story to ensure business success. So we are a boutique investor relations agency,
Jeffrey (7m 57s):
And that’s a pretty, it that’s, it that’s a tough
3 (7m 59s):
In a specialized task it’s that
Beth (8m 1s):
It isn’t a super excited. It, it did others on those, a lot of like regulation that goes along in experience and how to handle this and how to handle that. We really like it. We work with super smart and interesting people, that kinds of people, that our members of FEI Boston. So it is, it is a great synergistic experience for me, right.
Jeffrey (8m 24s):
Well, it’s just great. And you know, just a, before we go and how many members does FBI Boston half
Beth (8m 30s):
Right around 400 members and those, our senior financial execs, again, CFOs senior VPs of finance and importantly, a preso wide range of industries, right? We’re here in Massachusetts where there’s tech and biotech in. Those are clearly represented, but we also have manufacturing and I can’t say it, but I’m thinking it consumer and financial and a wide of industries, we are a great group. And I encourage anyone who’s thinking about joining a trade organization, if you are a financial professional, think about FEI because we are very big on learning and sharing and networking and helping each other succeed.
Jeffrey (9m 14s):
Okay. It just because of my, it just because of the logo over my shoulder, I also recommend CFO’s in family businesses. The family business association of, of my head is a F as the head of the family business association, you know, to many times as family business owners, don’t always understand what goes on for best practices and other businesses in sending there CFOs out. We’ll only help protect him in this economy as well.
Beth (9m 38s):
Absolutely. There is a power in having a network, whether it’s entrepreneurs, FEI, or others, think about a trade group for your profession to help your career and to help your company and to help others, right? Because you know, a lot in different, I’m sure that you do that you share and give back, and then you, you’re very good at sharing information and helping others. And that’s an important role that we all play
Jeffrey (10m 2s):
Evan there with the best there is nobody like Evan. Evon, is there anything you want to say before we close?
Evan (10m 9s):
Oh, I just want to say that I get a lot of value out of FEI there I’ve made tremendous relationships with people all around Boston, the Boston area. And it, it has really helped me to kind of take my career to the next level and give me a support system of a good professionals in this area that you can count on. So if you’re looking to kind of, you know, reach out and broaden your horizons and broaden your financial career, I would absolutely recommend keeping us up and checking out FEI.
Jeffrey (10m 42s):
Well, and I’m going to start now the campaign for that 20 to 2047 for FEI president. Now I’ll second that motion. We were just, it just gives us about, you know, 18 years to train you ever, and to get you in to that role. But Beth, if anybody a is looking for you, FAI and also Conway, how would they find you?
Beth (11m 7s):
So we, our online Conway Communications, Conway comms, I r.com and for FEI F E I boston.org. Great.
Jeffrey (11m 19s):
And Evan, someones looking for you,
Evan (11m 22s):
Ah, if anyone’s looking for me and you can reach us at a, I would just go in our website, which is Sabre’s hyphened wallet.com, or you can go to our teen section and you’ll see my wonderful face there with all of our other team members. And you can easily get her information from there right now. Right.
Jeffrey (11m 38s):
And you can always find me at the Mick consulting from it may just that’s jayDavis@lmageusa.com. That’s made usa.com. Thanks Beth. Thanks Evan. And I look forward to our next segment with FEI on Radio Entrepreneurs.
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