Eric Johnson didn’t get his first set of golf clubs until he was in college. He never really took golf seriously until several years later when some coworkers invited him to play a round at Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club in Portland, OR. “Now this is fantastic… I want to do more of this!” was his immediate thought.
In this episode, we talk about how amazing golf has been for Eric’s relationship building, both with coworkers and clients. By developing these stronger connections, he’s able to have more open and honest work conversations. He also discusses how life is a broad concept that incorporates your work, your home life and your hobbies. If it was only work, Eric admits he would burn out and not be nearly as effective.
Eric Johnson is the CFO at Nintex, bringing more than 18 years of financial and operational experience at mid-size and large technology companies.
He graduated maxima cum laude from the University of Portland with a degree in finance.
Henry Lawson has always been fascinated with cars and anything with an engine, really. He’s built 3 cars and restored countless others, including a 1902 MMC and a 1969 Dodge Charger.
In this episode, we talk about how work can easily become all-consuming if we let it. Henry reminds us all that it is acually a marathon and not a sprint, so managers can’t expect everyone to run at sprinting speed all the time. There are times to get things done and there are times to back off an respect people’s space and freedom, especially when it comes to spending time with family. Therefore, a business should measure staff by outcomes instead of hours or face time.
Henry Lawson is co-founder and CEO of autoGraph.
He received a degree in mechanical engineering from Trinity Hall, Cambridge, and then his MBA from Harvard Business School as a Baker Scholar.
Julie (Jules) Carman has always been a runner, like good enough to earn a Track & Field scholarship to Cal for running 200’s kind of runner. There are things she learned running that carry over directly to her career, things that she feels you can’t get anywhere else: resilience, mental strength, proper mindset and discipline. Running also made Jules comfortable being uncomfortable, allowing her to easily mold to new situations and get to the next level.
In this episode, we talk about how things in life are much bigger than work, but it’s sometimes difficult to keep that perspective. And it’s a very slippery slope once you lose focus on the passions that truly drive you. Professionalism will tell you to work more and do those passions less, making them dormant and eventually extinct altogether.
Julie Carman works as the Senior Director, Global Accounting and Consulting Segment at Intapp in the San Francisco Bay Area.
She graduated from University of California, Berkeley in 1986 with a degree in Business and Communication
Shortly after starting at Hodges-Mace, one of the salespeople told Ron Shah that he’s “not the typical CFO” simply because he brought his personality to work with him. In the same way that he does in the office, Ron brings his personality to being the play-by-play announcer at his son’s high school football games. So much so, by his third game, people were noticing how much fun he was having in the booth.
In this episode, we talk about how Ron’s sharing stories about his play-by-play calls or other stories about his family, it humanizes him in such a way that makes him approachable. This allows everyone around him to feel comfortable and develop trust, which is the first key to engagement. By getting others to talk about their passions, it creates an energy in the office that’s infectious. Ron encourages everyone to “rip the band-aid off” and just share a little bit with a client or coworker — you’ll be amazed at the interest level and how others will gravitate toward you.
Ron Shah joined Hodges-Mace in October 2011 as the Chief Financial & Operations Officer.
He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Finance from Babson College and a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Virginia.
At the age of 22, Vinh Giang decided not fulfill the Asian prophecy and become an accountant, so he took a slightly different path and pursued a career as a magician. Since then he’s won multiple awards for magic shows, he’s a successful international keynote speaker and runs a video production company in Australia called Luminary. Being a magician, speaker, and a director all have one thing in common – Storytelling. And that’s his greatest passion in life.
In this episode, we talk about how everyone in the office first found out he did magic and how bringing that to the office brought a breath of fresh air to an otherwise dull environment. And Vinh discusses how he hated work because he realized his "work self" was different than his "real self", so he was so relieved to be able to bring some of that to work and make it more fun. We also talk about how professionals should be more like performers, having opening and closing jokes or stories that break down the barriers professionalism has built.
Vinh Giang is the CEO and Director at Luminary Productions and an International Keynote Speaker, using magic to deliver his message. Prior to that, he worked at a small accounting firm in Adelaide, Australia.
He studied accounting at the University of Adelaide, Australia.
If someone were to ask where Joseph Rugger was right now, you’re best guess would be one of our glorious National Parks. He’s been to almost all of them, from Acadia in Maine to the White Sands in New Mexico –driving his Prius all over the country. He created a bucket list of places he’d like to visit all over the world and is quickly checking them off as he does his CFO work virtually.
In this episode, we talked about how we get most of our enjoyment from non-work time, so talking about those things in the office only enhances our jobs. We also talked about how leaders should take the time to genuinely get to know their staff. Using forced programs as the only time to do so is not authentic and doesn’t develop any connections. A good rule Joseph uses is to double the question to statement ratio to open a dialogue and build those relationships.
Joseph Rugger is the CFO of Jonesboro Prosthetic and Orthotic Laboratory and a Continuing Education Instructor with the AICPA. He was the 2011 Arkansas Outstanding Emerging CPA Award Winner and a member of the 2013 AICPA Leadership Academy.
He graduated from Lyon College with a BS Accounting, BS Finance, and BA Economics while being an active member of the baseball team. He later received his Master’s of Professional Accounting from IUPUI.
Greg Papineau takes service to a whole new level, especially now that he’s a Deacon in the Catholic Church. He was first called to this in 2000 as a chaperone on his son’s World Youth Day visit to the Vatican. Since then, he’s been ordained and in his words, can “marry, bury and baptize”. And, oh yeah, he also happens to be the 1989 Colorado State Champion Cyclist.
In this episode, we talk about how the word “Deacon” is derived from a Greek word meaning “servant”. Greg is always thinking how he can be even more service oriented and also develop a personal interest in clients and coworkers. This leads to a cycling group that meets in the warmer months and team meetings starting where the new staff members tell everyone a little bit about their life outside of work.
Greg Papineau works as the Director of Audit & Assurance for BiggsKofford, PC. He’s also the lead for the Firm’s Physician Group Services and Non-profit Services. Prior to joining BiggsKofford, he was a Controller in the banking industry after spending a few years at a different public accounting firm.
He has a Bachelor of Science, Accounting from Central Washington University.
Amy Cooper loves Auburn football. And she loves teaching accounting at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Combining the two has let her give the most important lesson — professionals can be successful while also sharing their passions at work. There isn’t a student in her Fall Semester classes that doesn’t know who Auburn is playing the next weekend.
In this episode, we talk about the public perception of accounting versus reality and how that skews people’s behavior, including that of accountants. When Amy sees these college students, they are all unique with different hobbies and passions. Amy is working hard to encourage this from her students even after they begin working full-time and “professionalism” creeps in.
Amy Cooper is an Accounting Instructor at the Universit of Alaska Fairbanks. Prior to that, she worked at a few public accounting firms in Washington and Alaska.
She has a BS in Accounting & French from Birmingham-Southern College and a Master of Professional Accounting in Taxation from the University of Washington.
Scott Gehman grew up camping in New Jersey but college and starting his career caused him to put that passion on hold for many years. He’s also always been obsessed with loud, fast cars. Now that his son is a Boy Scout, he’s able to combine the two as he loads up his Mustang GT to spend a weekend camping.
In this episode, we talk about how important it is to be willing to share, no matter how small — something on your desk, a picture on your office wall, or computer desktop wallpaper are simple ways to show your hobby or passion. We also discuss how he felt like an outsider since he really isn’t into sports but how he was able to approach co-workers and clients from another angle to create stronger relationships.
Scott Gehman is a Retirement Plan Consultant with Conrad Siegel Actuaries in York, PA. He also handles some marketing and business development for the firm.
He graduated magna cum laude with a BS degree in Marketing from Messiah College.
Maya really likes chocolate. No, I mean really likes it. It all started when she was in college and a chocolate fudge brownie a la mode sundae made her lose track of time and space as she was in total flow with that moment in time. And now she uses chocolate to start client meetings, which brings everyone together and also puts them in a great mood. She also actively participates in chocolate festivals throughout the country and even hosts chocolate tastings. So it looks like Boston just moved up to the top of my cities to visit next!
In this episode, we talk about how your value to your organization is much more than your intellectual capital -- it's the social capital of all your connections as well. And in this world of virtual teams, it's even important to create these personal connections. And she also offers some really great tips about how to decide which chocolate is actually your favorite.
Maya Townsend is the founder and lead consultant at Partnering Resources. She's also the co-editor of the Handbook for Strategic HR: Best Practices in Organization Development from the OD Network.
She graduated with a BA degree in Community Studies from Oberlin College and later went on to get an MS from American University and a Certificate in Organization Development from Georgetown University.