July 1, 2020  /  Debbie Bing

Debbie BingOrganizations can get in the way of their own success. The reasons are plentiful—ineffective design, challenged teams, unclear roles or structures, cumbersome or insufficient processes, challenging authority dynamics, to name just a few. Every leader has faced that moment. When they simply know that there is something about how the organization is working that is getting in the way of achieving the full potential of its goals. And yet harnessing the collective power of an organization—with multiple talents, ideas, and a more powerful overall impact than any one individual can have—is somehow still around the corner, just out of reach.... read more »

June 29, 2020

Chris McEnteeWe are thrilled to welcome Chris McEntee to CFAR as a Senior Advisor for our work with healthcare and research organizations and professional associations and societies. In her most recent role as CEO of the American Geophysical Union (AGU)—a global professional scientific society serving 130,000 scientists—Chris positioned AGU as a leading industry voice and drove key initiatives that increased the relevance and value of science in our society.


With over 25 years of professional experience, Chris has focused on growing large organizations through reimagining their governance, membership, programs, public policy, sci... read more »

June 24, 2020  /  Barry Dornfeld

Culture has played an increasingly critical role in organizations across all domains, and we know that people across organizational levels have become more aware of how vital its role is in shaping strategy, impacting organizational success, and deepening employee engagement. At the same time, the pandemic, and the necessary responses to it, have tested organizational culture in ways that we are just taking stock of and that may have long-lasting impact.


We know that organizations with purposeful, collaborative, inclusive, and psychologically safe cultures have more engaged and effective leaders, staff, and teams, and deliver better outcome... read more »

June 16, 2020  /  Richard Levin

In this radio interview, initially broadcast on WBOQ-FM in Gloucester, MA, I talk about ways we can acclimate to the turbulence brought about by the combined impact of COVID-19, racial injustice, unemployment, and steep financial losses. Not knowing which way to turn for help has the capacity to crowd out our best thinking, and to force us into making impulsive decisions.


The best way for leaders to be strategic rather than impulsive is to develop new skills that help their organizations deal with collective trauma. I address trauma in the radio interview... read more »

June 10, 2020  /  Todd Smith
Todd Smith, Senior Consultant2020 has been tumultuous, unlike anything many of us have ever experienced. As we shift to living and working in a new reality, organizations have been left upended. Leaders face abundant, urgent questions about how to care for their organization and their people, and how to plan for an uncertain future.
At CFAR, we have been grappling with the same challenges—both within our organization and through our work with clients. As we listened to leaders voice their concerns and watched numerous organizations focus on the notion of resiliency, we quickly came to realize that resiliency, while a critical s... read more »
June 3, 2020  /  Debbie Bing
These are trying times. We see a world that feels turned upside down, and share deep despair and anger at the racial injustice behind the recent killings of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and countless more before them.
We know that better is both possible and necessary. We at CFAR are committed to making a difference where we are able—by working with leaders and organizations to create space for dialogue and connection, and through our deeply held belief that differences are a virtue, not a liability, in the impactful outcomes we seek.
Leaders have an important role in our collective next chapter to demonstrate values and build cultures that embrace differences, learning, hope, and commitment to change.It is a... read more »
May 8, 2020  /  Megan Helzner

Preparing the next generation ("Next Gen") is a critical step on the path to succession in a family business. There are many ways to create development opportunities, starting with exposure in “small bites” from a young age, in age- and stage-appropriate ways. Think: formal education programs, or spending time in the proverbial “mailroom” (or its equivalent), or accompanying a family member on a job, and more. 


One steadfast and valuable method to expose the Next Gen to business has been internships, typically starting in high school or college. Summer learning opportunities develop younger family membe... read more »

April 29, 2020  /  Caleb White

Caleb E. White, PrincipalThe often heard board governance adage of “nose in, fingers out”1 is regularly held up as guidance for board members and a caution to them, many of whom are former C-suite executives, that it’s not their job to delve too deeply into day-to-day operations. 


But should this hold in this time of a crisis—particularly one the length and depth of which is unknown? The COVID-19 crisis has triggered countless off-cycle board meetings or updates, whether fiduciary or advisory, with management working diligently to provide important information ab... read more »

April 27, 2020  /  Katelyn Husereau

Throughout this challenging time, there is one message that continues to bring a great deal of comfort: “We are in this together.” We are all facing some degree of paralyzing uncertainty and intense challenge. Though our individual situations may be quite different, some experiences these days seem universally shared: 


— Our personal and business lives are even more enmeshed than normal as the boundary between work and home is obliterated

 read more »

April 22, 2020  /  Jennifer Tomasik
As the leader of CFAR’s healthcare practice and in my role as Regent for the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE), I was honored to host a webinar last week for healthcare leaders grappling with questions about how to care for themselves and for others (their teams, their patients, their families) in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis. My colleagues at ACHE Rhode Island and I wanted to create a safe space to address the kinds of questions participants were asking: How do I help overwhelmed teams of healthcare providers focus on what’s most important, even as they fear for their own safety? How do I support cancer patients as they’... read more »
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