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The Best Antidote to Stress

Join us for this year’s virtual Financial Leadership Summit to focus on learning, collaboration, and building ideas for the rapidly changing future.

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This year really has been unlike any other. The 2020 Financial Leadership Summit Virtual Conference kicked off yesterday with Andrej Suskavcevic, FEI’s President and CEO, and Frank Cesario, CFO of Radiac Abrasives, Inc. and Conference Chair, welcoming us. Although we were meant to gather in May in Frank’s hometown of Chicago, this year has taught us that indefinite uncertainty affords us opportunity to gather new insights from our peers, content experts, and industry leaders. We can form and deepen relationships that will help us confidently navigate our new normal. And, we’ll be gifted resources that guide us in implementing the change our organizations need to remain competitive in the “I want it right now and I want it my way” marketplace.

FEI invited me to offer opening remarks about staying positive in unprecedented times. I shared research showing just how high COVID-19 has elevated American’s stress levels. I offered suggestions for ways society is evolving, a download to help you and your team to process loss, and many habits you can deploy to remove stress, manage time, and walk forward with clarity. All business today is personal. So, being near emotionally balanced people, openly expressing your emotions, and intentionally distributing your time into activities, colleagues, and learning that uplifts you will allow you to thrive. The best antidote to stress is resilience.

Our next speaker, Howard Tullman, a futurist, serial entrepreneur, and venture investor, wowed attendees with more than 250 slides and examples of emerging trends, competitive considerations, and how technologies are transforming our lives. Howard’s key takeaways for me include the idea that today’s success is your greatest impediment to change and future economic viability. The businesses of the future will offer access to products, services and experiences, without having assets. And, that we now have to mass customize our offerings as customers are empowered in ways they’ve never been. As Howard said, be consistent, persistent, and resistant. To learn more about him, visit to read his Tullman Truisms and blog about entrepreneurship for Inc. Magazine.

The Hays Company’s David Ross gave an incredible presentation about avoiding costly health plan mistakes. Jeff Dawley, President and Co-Founder of Cybersecurity Compliance Corporation, spoke about cybersecurity and building resilience in your organization. Bruce Willey, CEO of American Tax and Business Planning, offered insights into small business tax planning process improvement. And, it wouldn’t be a FEI Summit if we didn’t close without a bit of fun - comedian Collin Moulton did just that.

We opened discussing stress and its causes. We talked about the pace of change increasing. We shared ideas about ways to mitigate risk and plan for what’s next. And, we closed with humor and a belief that no matter what the next year brings, we will be better together.

The theme of this year’s Summit is Vision 2020. If day one is a barometer, expect six learning-rich days. There will be opportunities to experience our sponsors virtually, and download the digital conference bag, in the engagement hub. Purposely designed networking sessions will allow you to share your obstacles and receive myriad solutions back. Having vision often means we have to surrender how something is done and trust that more beneficial outcomes are available. If you happen to miss a session, you’ll be able to view it on demand through December 31st.

For the last three years, Michael S. Seaver has served as emcee of the Financial Leadership Summit. For more on his work as speaker, leadership consultant, and executive coach, visit