Demystifying Finance

Finance for non-financial managers

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Time Committment

8-12 hours

8 self-paced modules

Enrollment begins

November 01, 2017

Course enrollment is open

Drive productivity and value through better financial decisions.

Raise your game. Enhance your financial acumen and increase your organizational influence and impact.

Accelerate results

Unlock the power of finance to help accelerate the speed and quality of your business decisions

Drive and create value

Learn to interpret and influence key performance metrics that drive enterprise value.

Ask the right questions to understand the financial impact your decisions have on your organization.

Analyze financial statements

Understand and translate financial statements into insights and implications for your business.

Make the business case

Develop a compelling business case

Learn with the best

Joe Perfetti

Joe Perfetti is a leading expert in corporate finance and strategy who has delivered over 1500 executive education teaching days for leading organizations. Joe is a graduate of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and currently serves as a Lecturer at the RH Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland, College Park. He has won the Distinguished Teaching Award and the Top 15% teaching award for teaching excellence. He delivers executive programs for Duke Corporate Education and Serves as an Adjunct Professor at Georgetown Law School where he teaches corporate finance.

What You Will Learn

Course Overview

Demystifying Finance

Expand your financial knowledge to ask better questions, spot problems, make better decisions that will increase your organizational influence and impact. This program will use financial data to analyze performance, provide a framework to understand changes in business models, use key performance metrics to help interpret financial statements.


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8–12 hours to complete

Welcome and Introduction

The course is composed of 8 self-paced modules. Each module includes: readings, a 5-8 minute video, an application exercise with a solution video, and a quiz to assess comprehension. Expect a 60-90 minute time commitment per module (8-12 hours total).

The Four Cornerstones of Value Creation

This module covers the four cornerstones of creating value for your organization: positive spread, healthy cash flows, investor expectations, and the sustainability of competitive advantage. Throughout this module, we will view the concept of value creation from an investors perspective, and introduce the most important levers and metrics managers can use to create sustainable value for their companies.

The Key Value Drivers of Value Creation

This module will drill down on the concepts of spread, growth, and sustainability. After this module, you will be able to explain how the spread of a business contributes to value creation, why growth can sometimes destroy value, and the importance of sustainability to investors.

Cash Flow Cycle

This module introduces the concept of the cash flow cycle—or how a business or even a single project generates cash on a recurring basis. Understanding this will allow you to better understand a company's business model. We will also discuss how investors use the cash flow cycle in their decision-making process through the concepts of spread and Financial Cycle Time.

The Balance Sheet

The balance sheet tracks the first two stages of the cash flow cycle: the financing stage and the investment stage. This statement is important to investors because it details what a company owns, what it owes, and its value to shareholders.

Income Statement

The income statement, which is also known as a profit and loss statement (P&L) is the only financial statement that shows a company's sales and net income. From this document, investors, analysts, and a company's internal finance team are able to derive and use important measurements like earnings per share (EPS), return on equity (ROE), return on assets (ROA), earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT), and earnings before interest taxes and amortization (EBITDA). A P&L is an important step in a manager's career. Controlling costs and driving revenue means your actions will directly influence a company's allocation of resources.

ROIC vs Free Cash Flow

Another metric of financial performance is free cash flow. This metric can be used to identify companies that have the financial ability to sustain long-term competitive advantage by funding growth opportunities while also paying back investors and bond holders.

Four Elements of a Business Case

Explore key factors that corporate finance professionals, venture capitalists, and private equity firms use when making funding decisions. These factors include: market opportunity, meeting customer needs, developing a business model that is responsive to the concerns of finance professionals, and the importance of having the right team to drive performance.

Time Value of Money

In this module the core concepts are reviewed. The point is made that in order to move cashflows and values between periods, you need three things: the total amount of cash spent or received, the interest or discount rate applied to the cash, and the number of periods before cash is spent or received.

Course Evaluation

After you complete the 8 modules we invite you to offer feedback in a short survey to help us improve our approach and expand our content. We hope you will have fun learning while expanding your financial knowledge & raise your game.

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Demystifying Finance
$299 per participant

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