An Interview with Slava Burdman
Slava Burdman, Life Sciences Business Planning Advisor and Modeling Consultant at Burdman Management Consulting, shares his thoughts on the life sciences industry, and how Carlson Management Consulting's cloud financial services and solutions make for a valuable partnership.
Can you tell us about yourself, your company and what you do?
Seven years ago, I started Burdman Management Consulting as a boutique financial modeling and business planning advisory firm, supporting early-stage Life Sciences CFO’s in Greater Boston. My business has grown organically ever since. Today, I believe we touch over 50% of the companies in this area.
Can you describe your background in finance?
My career in finance has centered around financial planning and analysis (FP&A) for a wide array of public and private companies, from startups to Fortune 100s.
Ultimately, I began to focus on building financial reporting streams, cash flow and profitability models, resource optimization models, and strategic planning for the life sciences industry.
What influenced your decision to go into the finance and consulting industry?
Our former Governor used the term “Accidental Entrepreneur” to describe the resiliency and flexibility required to navigate the ever-changing professional landscape. My case was no different. I explored a few different areas of finance to practice my trade before deciding upon life sciences, with its explosion of growth during the past decade. There was a clear need for professionals to bring order to creative chaos.
Please describe a “day in the life” as a partner and consultant to your clients.
I am always excited to go to my office, and each day is unique for me. During a day in the life, I discover new opportunities to influence my clients’ strategic thinking through the models and guidance I am asked to provide.
In addition, I can be found working on three to five modeling projects, visiting a CFO’s office or meeting with their senior staff, and consulting online or by phone.
What do you enjoy most about assisting finance teams in life sciences companies?
My greatest reward is seeing the changes in my clients’ thinking and their financial management behavior as a direct result of the guidance I’ve provided for them. It’s great to observe the successful execution of plans we collaboratively developed to achieve key business goals.
What are the typical pain points that your clients face? How do you address them?
The life sciences industry is growing exponentially. Most small and medium-sized companies in this sector are operating at fast speeds due to intense global competition. Oftentimes, the companies lack mature financial management processes as well as financial systems and resources. These same companies also manage sophisticated technologies and operational complexities.
To address these challenges, I design and build custom solutions that match my clients’ needs and resource availability.
Why are the right cloud CPM systems and integrations critical to the success of your clients?
Currently, cloud-based corporate performance management systems and integrations allow young and growing companies within the life sciences sector to make the most of a variety of powerful capabilities without having a significant IT or financial operations footprint.
How does partnering with Carlson add value to what you can deliver to your clients?
During the past four years, Burdman Management Consulting has collaborated with Carlson Management Consulting on multiple client engagements. Carlson brings extensive expertise in cloud-based business planning systems and financial management that complement what I do in planning and modeling. Carlson’s cloud financial services and solutions make for a valuable partnership. Our combined expertise delivers superior results for our respective clients.
What qualities do you bring to make a difference for your clients?
I bring my ability to rapidly facilitate solutions with senior staff, simplify complex business environments, and build models for efficient and effective decision-making. In a few words, I live by my marketing slogan: “Simplicity for your complex world”.
Most of my clients make incredibly important decisions regarding resource allocation. These decisions could make or break their futures and, prior to my engagement, are often based on uncertain sets of data and unstructured processes. I strive to learn their markets and understand their cultures and have a reputation for quickly delivering results.