CFO Summit XXXVI 2019

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  • Why CFOs Must Stay on Top of Innovation & Technology

    Dorinda Abendschein, a speaker at the marcus evans CFO Summit XXVI Spring 2013, on how CFOs can keep up-to-date on innovation and technology.

    Interview with: Dorinda Abendschein, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, Brinks, Inc.


    Chief Financial Officers (CFOs) must keep current on what is going on in their business and customer lines,” says Dorinda Abendschein, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, Brinks, Inc. “CFOs are used to keeping in touch with accounting regulations and changes in policy, but it is critical they also stay on top of innovation and technology. It is important CFOs understand what customers want to buy and what they are willing to pay for,” she adds.

    Abendschein is a speaker at the marcus evans CFO Summit XXVI Spring 2013, in Mashantucket, Connecticut, May 19-21.

    What should CFOs prioritize today? What makes the biggest impact on the bottom line?

    CFOs need to have a good level of understanding of the operational and technological sides of their business. There was a time when financial acumen and competency was enough, but the reality today is that leadership discussions are around innovation, and how much technology or change the company can afford in a period of time when investors are expecting a healthy bottom line. CFOs have to be continually relevant. They should have a close relationship with the Chief Information Officer to really understand how technology translates to profitability.

    Balancing long-term and short-term growth is a constant battle. If a company does not innovate, it will not survive. Anyone can be a good CFO for a year and make a current period look strong, but shareholders are expecting growth. CFOs need to make sure that there are operational work streams that allow innovators in the organization to have a voice and they have to secure secondary resources for investment relative to that innovation.

    Going slow because they cannot afford it could shut down the pipeline for growth, while going too fast can put the company out of business. It is a fine balance between the two.

    How could they ensure that technology implementations are successful?

    Any technology or competency change has to be combined with training and education. Many technology implementations have failed because people assumed that business processes were scalable relative to that innovation or investment, but that is rarely the case. Employees have to be re-trained and be a part of that evolution. Many forget that piece and when it fails, they fail the Information Technology department and potentially the customer.

    The CFO’s job is also to enable productivity initiatives and make sure there is always an  accountability element.

    Any final thoughts?

    CFOs must look at business improvement initiatives holistically. The company will get there a lot faster if people are trained, ready and they understand what the expectations are.

    Many CFOs struggle to keep track of productivity improvements, but they need to set a clear roadmap which is tied back to the people who are responsible for it. That is critical for CFOs to know whether the organization is ahead or behind pace, and to be able to course correct it.

    Contact: Sarin Kouyoumdjian-Gurunlian, Press Manager, marcus evans, Summits Division

    Tel: + 357 22 849 313

    About the CFO Summit XXVI Spring 2013

    This unique forum will take place at the MGM Grand at Foxwoods Resort and Casino, Mashantucket, Connecticut, May 19-21, 2013. Offering much more than any conference, exhibition or trade show, this exclusive meeting will bring together esteemed industry thought leaders and solution providers to a highly focused and interactive networking event. The Summit includes presentations on bringing more focus to balance sheet health, helping companies to find profitability growth and motivating top finance performance.

    For more information please send an email to or visit the event website

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    Please note that the Summit is a closed business event and the number of participants strictly limited.

    About marcus evans Summits

    marcus evans Summits are high level business forums for the world’s leading decision-makers to meet, learn and discuss strategies and solutions. Held at exclusive locations around the world, these events provide attendees with a unique opportunity to individually tailor their schedules of keynote presentations, think tanks, seminars and one-on-one business meetings. For more information, please visit

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