Category: Finance and Banking

Q2 2017 Thought Leadership – What Makes a Good Marketer and Why You Need One

Filed under: Finance and Banking, Marketing, Thought Leadership

An Exclusive Interview with Hedge Fund Executives

Written by: Alexis DuFresne, Managing Director, Marketing & Investor Relations Search
Solomon Page, Financial Services Division

My professional career has been dedicated to the success of marketing and investor relations functions within asset management. I spent a great deal of time and passion educating managers on the roles of marketing and investor relations, as well as creating a case for successful hires. During the course of my conversations with prospective clients, the most frequent question I receive is, “Why should I invest in marketing hires?”

To get to the root of this question, I asked three industry leaders to provide commentary from their prospective: a hedge fund manager, an allocator, and an asset management COO/marketer.

  • Michael Vranos, CEO and Founder of Ellington Management Group, a $6.5bln AUM hedge fund, spoke to me about how he thinks about his marketing team and their responsibilities. Having been in the game for over 20 years, and a widely regarded industry legend, he has seen the evolution and importance of marketing.
  • Chris Cutler, Senior Hedge Fund Due Diligence Analyst and Founder of Manager Analysis Services, spends a significant amount of his time speaking with marketers who solicit his allocation. His feedback on what resonates with him when he meets marketers is truly valuable.
  • Alex de Calice, Founding Partner, COO, and Head of Marketing at Nara Capital, added his view on the challenges marketers face on the front lines. He is a top marketing professional and management executive who has built and managed marketing teams.

The major takeaways were clear; marketing is an essential part of an asset management organization, and the role is constantly evolving. All commentators agreed that it has become increasingly harder to attract assets, and therefore the bar for marketers has been raised.

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4 Ways to Improve Corporate Financial Analysis

Filed under: Accountancy, Finance and Banking, Quick Tips, Strategy

As demand for Financial Planning & Analysis’s (FP&A’s) services has increased in recent years, teams are having to work ever harder on analytical projects just to maintain a significant influence on business decisions.

Last month, we brought over 30 heads of FP&A together to discuss how the world’s leading companies aim to increase the impact of FP&A’s business analysis.

Four Takeaways

Four good takeaways came from these discussions. Overall, the most successful FP&A teams are more concerned with being a champion for better use of data analysis.

Takeaway 1–Set expectations for analyst behavior: The heads of FP&A generally agreed that a good process for generating insights must start with clear guidelines on what analysts should do in specific situations. Managers should reinforce this framework through formal and informal coaching sessions and best practices sharing amongst analysts.

Otherwise, analysts—especially junior analysts—will struggle when confronted with vague requests and with requests where the “perfect” data isn’t readily available, wasting scarce analytic resources and tarnishing FP&A’s brand as a valued business partner

Click here to read the rest on CEB >>

The Joy of Risk

Filed under: Big Ideas & Innovation, Finance and Banking, Risk, Skills

One American military leader, already having lost most of his many battles, persisted in driving his troops to attack in situations that everyone else regarded as lost causes. A leader destined to go down in history as a failure? Hardly. It was George Washington.

Business leaders today could take a lesson in risk management from General Washington, but it’s not the one you might think. Washington was never reckless. He studied risks carefully, running unapologetically from battles likely to lead to catastrophic defeat, while throwing himself and his troops into battles that he saw could prove decisive and were more winnable than others assumed, as when he crossed the freezing Delaware to attack–and defeat–the British in a blizzard.

Managers sometimes mistakenly think their job is to avoid or eliminate risk. That’s easy to do: Just veer away from all undertakings that aren’t sure things, or that you don’t understand well. I can absolutely guarantee you the result of that strategy will be mediocre performance, at very best. Innovation, speed, and bold action are all associated with risk–so if you’re avoiding risk, you’re avoiding some of the very qualities your organization needs to excel or perhaps even just survive.

Click here to read the rest on LinkedIn >>