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The CFO Leadership Program - Operational Skills 

The CFO Leadership Program is the definitive program for aspiring or new CFOs, and for experienced CFOs who wish to refresh their base skills and knowledge.

The CFO Leadership Program has two components: Operational Skills and Leadership Competencies

Operational Skills examines the core technical, systems, and procedural, skills; and Leadership Competencies emphasizes the leadership skills that provide the foundation for success for CFOs.

There is no particular order in which the programs should be taken. While completion of both components of the CFO Leadership Program is optional, those who do complete both components will receive the CPA Ontario’s CFO Leadership Program Certificate of Completion

Operational Skills

Sunday, July 19 - Wednesday, July 22, 2015

This program is SOLD OUT.  A waitlist is available. Alternatively, you can consider some of our other CFO level offerings, including The Master CFO, The CFO as Navigator, and The CFO as Strategist

Program Brochure 

Program Description (+)

Reporting to the CEO or President, the CFO is the top job that leads, initiates, and manages the financial decision-making process within the organization. As a senior advisor, the CFO as five distinct roles: business partner, scorekeeper, commentator, expert, and custodian. These diverse roles mean that the CFO has to see both the forest and the trees, needs to understand the numbers, as well as lead, develop, and help execute, the business strategy.

This program delivers the core CFO competencies that organizations expect and demand. Get up to speed on corporate governance and risk management, and the latest tools and applications. Examine the relationship of strategy and risk-taking, and help drive your organization’s mission and success. Nail down the planning, budgeting, and internal control competencies that facilitate efficient and effective operations. Explore the value-added CFO competencies in business valuation, business intelligence, M&A, and intellectual property. Learn how to effectively communicate the core finance and operating results for internal and external stakeholders.

Who Should Attend (+)

Do the CEO and Board look to you for counsel and guidance? Do you currently direct, or wish to direct, the finance and administration areas of your organization?  Are you trying to improve governance, accountability, and the control environment? Would you like to examine the state-of-the-art developments in strategy, risk management, and financial reporting? If so, then this program was created with you in mind.
Curriculum (+)

The program uses a combination of presentations, discussions and case studies during three-plus days to develop your in-depth understanding in the following areas:

Governance, Strategy and Risk Management

  • Stakeholders, shareholders and the board
  • Culture, tone and ethics
  • Behavioural finance
  • Integrating governance and strategy
  • COSO’s Enterprise Risk Management – Integrated Framework


Creating Value through Financial Management

  • Planning and budgeting
  • Operational and financial tools
  • Internal control and COSO’s Internal Control – Integrated Framework
  • Cash management
  • Treasury, capital markets and financial instruments


Advanced Topics

  • Valuing a business
  • Mergers and acquisitions and corporate strategy
  • Optimal capital structure
  • How to finance growth


Communicating Results

  • Reporting financial and operating results
  • Revenue recognition and other gaps in GAAP
  • Conclusion: what will you do differently tomorrow?
Dates and Times (+)

Dates: July 19 - 22, 2015. 

Location: Niagara-on-the-Lake

Program Times: 

  • The program begins at 5:00pm on Sunday and concludes at 2pm on Wednesday.
  • The Sunday evening program begins with registration at 5:00pm, and classroom learning and dinner beginning at 5:30pm.  
  • Check-in at the facility is available from 4:00pm onwards.
Registration and Fees (+)

This program is SOLD OUT.  A waitlist is available. Alternatively, you can consider some of our other CFO level offerings, including The Master CFO, The CFO as Navigator, and The CFO as Strategist

 All-inclusive (meals and accommodations) - RecommendedDay package (all meals included, accommodations not included)**
Members and CPAs$3,750 (register here)$3,250 (register here)
Non-Members$4,250 (register here)$3,750 (register here)


Program fees include the program itself, materials, meals and accommodations*. Participants will also receive the Canadian Treasury Management (4th ed.), in addition to their course materials.

An early-bird discount of $200 is available for registering 60 days in advance of the program start.

*Please note: A limited number of program spots are available to those who do not wish to have accommodations. As there may be evening activities (group work and/or networking opportunities), this option is recommended only for those who reside nearby.

Facilities (+)

The CFO Leadership Program – Operational Skills will be held at White Oaks Resort and Conference Centre, Niagara-On-The-Lake, a premium, four-diamond resort that has achieved a reputation for outstanding comfort, service and atmosphere to ensure a memorable learning and retreat experience for all executives who attend.

Program fees include meals, accommodations*, wi-fi access, use of basic fitness facilities, and a hospitality room for evening networking opportunities.

*Excluding registrants who have selected the non-accommodation option.

Getting There

From Pearson or Buffalo airports:

The Niagara Airbus offers Shuttle Transfers to and from Toronto’s Pearson and Buffalo Niagara’s International Airports and can drop you off right at the facility’s front doors. If you book on-line you can get a 5% discount for Airport transfers. The Niagara Airbus website is

Another option is the Falls Livery & Taxi. They can offer private cars for transport to and from the airport as well. They can be reached at 905-356-4500.

From Toronto:

Average time to drive from Toronto to White Oaks Resort and Conference Centre is 1 hour and 30 minutes, although it is recommended to assume an additional 45 minutes travel time in case of traffic, weather, or construction. See the Google map.

*Please note that these directions are for planning purposes only. You may find that construction projects, traffic, weather, or other events may cause conditions to differ from the map results, and you should plan your route accordingly.

CPD Information (+)
Subject to CPA Ontario regulations, Members may count up to 25 hours of verifiable CPD for the completion of this portion of The CFO Leadership Program.
Testimonials (+)

Our alumni include participants from the following organizations:

The Shaw Group Ltd., CIBC Asset-Based Lending Inc., Workopolis, Pioneer Energy LP, Torquest Partners, Ontario Power Generation, Kenwood Electronics Canada, The Second Cup Coffee Company,, Al Ghurair Group, Ernst & Young,  Bausch & Lomb Canada, Canada Development Investment Corporation, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, Rogers Communications, Deloitte & Touche LLP, and many more.

Here is what some had to say about The CFO Leadership Program: Operational Skills:

  • As a new CFO, the course exceeded my expectations and I would not hesitate to recommend it to colleagues in the future.
  • Benefited largely from the interactive discussion, real examples shared, ideas in terms of how to apply principles.
  • Jeffrey has a wealth of experience & is able to leverage on his knowledge in delivery.
  • Development and application of new insights will enhance overall value to my organization.
  • Some great ideas that I can implement.
  • Great resource, good networking, wide diversity of participants.
  • All CFOs can take many lessons away.
Faculty (+)

Jeffrey D. Sherman, FCPA, FCA, MBA, CIM, is chief financial officer of Atrium Mortgage Investment Corporation (TSX: AI), and director of several companies, and devotes his time to management and finance, writing and teaching. He has over 20 years experience as a corporate director and executive in high tech, biotechnology/medical, financial services, and business services. His interests include corporate governance, risk management and internal control, corporate finance, restructuring and start-up enterprises and initial public offerings.

Mr. Sherman is a popular presenter, and was an adjunct professor at York University for fifteen years. He is a frequent course director and course author for many organizations including provincial institutes of Chartered Professional Accountants across Canada, and the Law Society of Upper Canada, and has written over twenty books including: Canadian Treasury Management, Canadian Risk Management, and Financial Instruments: A Guide for Financial Managers (all published by Thomson-Reuters/Carswell), as well as Finance and Accounting PolicyPro and Information Technology PolicyPro (guides to governance, procedures, and internal control), and Cash Management Toolkit for Small and Medium Businesses (all published or co-published by the CICA/CPA Canada).

Contact Us
For more information please contact Lawrence Wong, CPA, CA, at CPA Ontario, at: 1-800-387-0735 ext. 4343, or at