Chris Scherer – Michigan
With over 25 years as a transformation Leader, Chris has added value (>$250 million in savings) and mitigated risk across borders, functions, levels, industries, and technologies by executing focused and system-wide programs. He has consistently delivered fast results in both failing and robust situations for start-ups and Fortune 500 companies. His start in small business continues today, after spending over six years helping to grow a start-up that later achieved the “Fast Fifty” by Crain’s Chicago Business and Inc. 5000.
Chris started his career working for the owner of three industrial diamond tool factories across the US. After completing a dual-degree Master’s program at Thunderbird and ESADE in Barcelona, Spain, he joined Arthur Andersen Business Consulting in Chicago with a practice focused on non-labor cost reduction. He then worked in industry for 13 years at Fortune 500 firms, in various roles with increasing responsibility from Corporate Audit, to International Finance, to Financial Shared Services and then Global Human Resources, advising and leading all aspects of HR risk management.
In 2009, he joined AArete, a boutique management consulting firm, with roots from Arthur Andersen. He not only helped grow AArete by a factor of 10 (from 10 to over 130 employees with similar increases in revenue), but also to lead multiple teams in non-labor cost reduction, compliance, and process improvement efforts at Fortune 500 companies, delivering over $250 million in savings, consistently gaining executive-level support and building teams empowered to drive results.
Chris was a founding member of a non-profit whose mission is to build a bicycle and pedestrian friendly community, which became the first community in New Jersey to earn The League of American Bicyclists’ “Bicycle Friendly Community” status.
Jim Adkins – Palm Beaches
Jim graduated from the United States Air Force Academy in 1981 and then went on to a long career in the Air Force as a leader, engineer, metallurgist, project/program manager, and acquisition officer. He took an incentivized early retirement opportunity and retired from his government service in 1996. His first commercial endeavor was with General Motors/Delphi Packard-Electric and GM/Delphi Chassis as a Senior Buyer in charge of all services and labor agreements necessary to run a multi-location $3.5B business.
Next, Jim took his talents to the private equity industry in his first of four business turn-arounds. Mentoring, teaching and leading the efforts for all operational and business services, agreements, contracts, and negotiations; he was able to add significant value and improve the bottom line. Due to his achievements at Best Power, he was sought after and joined John Deere Corp. to further refine his brand of trust, hard work, transparency, alignment and accountability. After numerous business successes, Jim re-entered the private equity world in 2002 with Enerpac LLC. to lead his second business turn-around. Using the same recipe of leading, mentoring and guiding multiple large teams and the individual management/leadership staff; he was able to achieve double digit improvements in profitability in less than 6 months.
Since 2002 Jim has gone on to successfully use his personal brand to lead, guide, improve and work in several industries including construction, lawn/termite service, fastener, automotive, electronics and jet engine businesses. Along the way, he has become certified as a LEAN and Six Sigma Black Belt and led many projects at the individual and corporate wide level to improve research & development, operations, procurement, Sales and Operations Planning (SOP), after-market support and sales initiatives. His senior leadership experience with private equity, privately held companies, publicly held companies, government buying and selling, plus 2 additional business turn-arounds with companies like Bobcat, ServiceMaster, and Chromalloy can provide any business partner with personalized and tailored approaches and solutions that will best meet their needs at both the individual and organizational levels.
Some of Jim’s proven areas of expertise are:
• Leadership and Leadership Development
• Identifying and implanting changes needed to achieve business growth
• Successful Communication within all levels of business
• Recognizing, Encouraging, and Creating Opportunity for Employee Achievement
• LEAN, Six Sigma, DMAIC, Toyota Production System
• Team Building, Collaboration, and Partnership
• Continuous Process Improvement
• Identifying Necessary Culture Changes, Recognizing/Improving Current Cultures
• Strategic Planning and Execution on Priorities
• Determine Crucial Management Changes
• Successful Mergers and Acquisitions
Richard Doyle – Chicago, IL and Canada
Richard has over 40 years of management experience from retail management through to the Executive Suite as CEO, Owner and Board Member.
Richard began his career in retail management working for Canada’s leading office supply chain and then the leading Canadian book store chain. Leaving the retail industry to join S. C. Johnson and the consumer products industry, Richard moved into sales management and marketing. After moving through various management positions, Richard progressed to the role of National Sales Manager for their Retail Sales Division.
In the ensuing years, Richard has been the General Manager for the Ontario PGA, President of ImagineAbility providing jobs for the intellectually disabled and President of Herd North America. Richard also owned Lauridon Sports Management a recreational facility management company.
Richard founded and manages Caledonia Enterprises a sales / consulting company. Caledonia has supported many business executives / owners to deal with the challenges they face each day, as they continue the growth of their companies.
Richard’s career has spanned various industries:
Retail Consumer Goods
Sports Management Facility Management
Not For Profit Automotive
While the coaching platform of CEO Focus is Peer Group (Mastermind) facilitation, he also works with company owners/senior managers individually on specific issues:
- Strategic planning for companies
- Sales management & training
- Business plans for presentations to banks or potential buyers of the organization.
- Interim management support.
- Human Resources
- Employee Development
- Sales Process
- Change management
James McPherson – Raleigh-Durham, NC
James McPherson is a Strategy and Innovation expert, with experience in Agile, Lean, and 4DX Business Process Improvement as well as Balanced Scorecard.
As a strategy consultant, James developed innovation and growth plans for a national science education company and was subsequently hired to implement these plans, starting the first new business unit at the company in over 25 years, as well as two major product lines.
James used a balanced scorecard approach to map current company competencies to new market opportunities, created strategic road maps, and tactically applied Agile and 4DX methodologies to marketing and product development.
James has led three start-ups and recently has been advising start-ups on their growth metrics, helping them to go from Angel funding to Series A funding more quickly.
James earned an M.B.A. from Duke University with concentrations in Strategy and Decision Science, where he was an Alumni Fellow and an Executive Fellow. He earned his B.A. in Classics with honors from Johns Hopkins University where he was a Maryland Distinguished Scholar and a Maryalnd General Scholar. He also lettered in Varsity Soccer and Basketball.
James was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to the Université de Lausanne where he researched Leadership and Institutional goals in Homer’s Iliad.
Uwe T. Wetzel
Uwe T. Wetzel – Orlando
Uwe gained his experience in over 30 years working as CFO and CEO in divisions and subsidiaries of Siemens AG, Germany. His assignments included startups and restructuring of plants in England, Canada and US.
He joined Siemens after he earned his BA in Finance in Nuremberg, Germany and went through the Siemens executive management training program making a steady rise in the organization. In this time, he managed successfully turnarounds of manufacturing facilities and business divisions, an acquisition and divesture of an electric heating company and a startup of a manufacturing Joint Venture for Diesel Injectors.
In his second career, he worked as a consultant for small and midsized companies ranging from 8 to 900 employees working with owners and executives on solving issues and improving profitability in a short period of time. The companies were privately owned or part of Private Equity Groups in different industries and service sectors, including automotive, industrial, electric utility and healthcare.
He focused throughout his career on improving profitability through a mix of revenue growth and cost reductions programs by building strong teams that were empowered to change and implement lean processes and continuous improvements using six sigma methodology. His leadership encouraged executives, managers and employees to think “outside the box” and pay attention to quality of work in all aspects of the company.
Keen analytical skills and superior quick understanding of operational and financial issues allowed him to achieve the necessary changes in a short period of time. Great communication skills aligned management and employees towards achieving the operational and financial goals.
Uwe enjoys family time, playing golf, swimming and loves watching European soccer games. He served as a treasurer at the Palmetto Health Foundation in Columbia, SC.