think2perform spotlight – Jim Jensen

by Ryan Goulart

I had the opportunity this month to sit down with Jim Jensen and learn more about Jim as a person, as a consultant and as our CFO. Here is a synopis of our conversation:

What is your role here at think2perform?

I am the Chief Financial Officer accountable for the financial management of the firm and also an external client consultant.   I help our firm run smoothly from a financial perspective, I help our team members with the design and pricing of their client proposals and I help our external clients be more successful.

What is your experience and background?

I am an actuary from the University of Minnesota with over 30 successful years in financial services and now with nearly 6 years with Think2Perform.  While in financial services, I worked in a variety of areas including product development, field system controller, licensing and field compensation, strategic planning and even an information management group who did predictive modeling.  I think I grew to be a strong leader who could draw the best out of people and I hope I’m known for caring about people and making complex things simple and actionable.

How do you help external clients be more successful?

I do this is a variety of ways depending on the situation.  Sometimes I’m helping one of our team members with a client that needs an analytical or financial perspective that I can help with.  Other times it’s my own client where I can help with either analytical/financial work or the more traditional training, coaching and consulting work that Think2Perform is known for.

Give an example of how your expertise helped solve a problem for a client

I recently built a simple financial model designed to size and value an opportunity for a client.  This not only gave them the estimates they needed, but it helped them to understand and focus on the key factors that would drive their success.  Actuaries are trained to think in a very structured way that proves useful in situations like this and it makes a huge advantage when a client’s CFO starts asking questions.

What do you do in your spare time?

I enjoy a variety of music – maybe due to the same desire for structure that led me to become an actuary.  I play the piano and the guitar and I also spend quite a bit of time at the Chanhassen Dinner Theatre where my wife and I are part-owners and where I’m Treasurer on their Board.  I like artists like Jackson Brown, Paul Simon, Paul McCartney and even Green Day as they have successfully written and performed great music for a very long time.

If you were a box of cereal, what would you be and why?

Maybe a box of Wheaties as they are a little rough but ultimately also very good for you.  I try to be open and honest with my clients which I hope ultimately allows them to be far more successful.

Before I die, I want to..

Make a big difference for a lot of people.

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