Carlson Thought Leadership in Finance & Technology

A Q&A with Ethan Carlson, Founder and CEO of Carlson Management Consulting

September 7, 2018 / by Lauren Strohmeier


An Inside Look into How a Record Number of Companies Are Benefiting from Carlson's Award-Winning Cloud Financial Solutions and Services

Inc. magazine has announced that Carlson Management Consulting has earned recognition on its 37th annual Inc. 5000 list, the highest honor awarded to the nation’s fastest-growing private companies. This is the fourth year in a row that Carlson has been featured on the Inc. 5000 list. Carlson continues to grow at a high, sustained rate, recording a three-year average of 165%.

Founder and CEO, Ethan Carlson, shares his insights on Carlson's fast growth as well as his vision for cloud financial services and solutions in the future.

Congratulations to Carlson Management Consulting for earning recognition on the 2018 Inc. 5000 list of the fastest-growing private companies in America. Can you share what led to Carlson’s fast growth during the past year?

Thanks! We are very excited to be recognized on the Inc. 5000 list for the fourth year in a row. Our continued growth is a direct result of the team’s dedication to helping our clients achieve finance and accounting transformation through best practices and the leading cloud technologies. We work hard to cultivate enduring relationships with our clients that contribute to their long-term success, which really makes a difference.

In addition, Carlson stays on the forefront of the most pioneering innovations in finance that are empowering organizations to become more successful. In collaboration with our partners Adaptive Insights and Sage Intacct, we are helping organizations fulfill their missions through forward-focused business planning and collaborative decision-making.

What specific accomplishments for 2018 would you like to highlight?

With Carlson surpassing 375 cloud financial solution implementations so far this year, a record number of organizations are benefiting from our solutions and services. To support demand, we grew our team to 38 employees. We continue to build a strong team with extensive backgrounds in FP&A, accounting and financial systems.

Carlson also received three awards for its contributions and growth. Specifically, we were awarded Partner of the Year: North America by Adaptive Insights. We were also featured in Boston Business Journal Fast 50 for the third year in a row as one of the fastest-growing companies based in Massachusetts. We were also listed for the fourth year in a row on the Inc. 5000.

With the launch of a major new version of DataBlend, our data integration platform, more of our clients are benefiting from unified data across their core financial and operational systems. We now have 140 clients who are leveraging DataBlend to unlock key financial insights that drive greater performance and growth.

How does Carlson discover and act upon growth opportunities?

Our team uses its entrepreneurial spirit to provide innovative financial solutions and services. Our culture is highly collaborative, as we put our heads together to produce transformative ideas that accelerate business growth for our clients.

In your experience, what kind of leadership style inspires fast growth in an organization?

In my experience, a leader who inspires fast growth is one who shows the way and leads by example. This leader inspires by sharing how the team’s contributions are making a difference for clients. They also communicate the importance of going above and beyond in their roles. When people have that big-picture perspective, they will feel compelled to work with purpose. 

What is your vision for Carlson’s cloud financial services and solutions in the future? What product and service developments will further advance Carlson’s growth?

On June 11th, Workday’s acquisition of Adaptive was announced, ushering an exciting era of business planning.

With the pairing of Workday and Adaptive, business users will get to benefit from a suite of robust Cloud solutions that meets all their needs in financial management, human resources, and business analytics. This integrated SaaS platform helps business users achieve full financial transformation, so they can grow and scale their organizations faster than ever before.

In addition, Carlson has expanded its financial outsourcing team and services. For organizations in early or high-growth stages, we have a team of financial consultants who can guide and support you.

How does Carlson’s company culture contribute to its success?

At Carlson, we have a culture of true unity and collaboration that creates inspired ideas. Everyone here has the freedom to explore their strengths. Our team members enjoy an environment of creativity and discovery in which they can provide the best business planning solutions for their clients.

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