Ioana Arsenie is an entrepreneur, financial strategist, owner of Trusted Advisor Strategy & Finance and an Elite Business Women Bucharest Ambassador. She helps entrepreneurs with optimizing their businesses, as external financial director as well as a business partner. “Through our projects we tear down the myth that detailed financial planning limits an entrepreneur’s options. On the contrary, we release freedom and energy to the entrepreneurs who tightly control their budget and results. We use a dynamic approach so that new hypotheses can be easily integrated and decisions are facilitated, observing their impact in the figures.”
C&B: What does the story of your career or business sound like?
Ioana Arsenie: “I spent the first four years in consultancy, where I had the opportunity to finely tune both my technical side as well as my permanent attention the needs of the client. I then chose to move into the industry. The most relevant to my evolution is my experience of more than 9 years of working in a multinational agribusiness company in which I was the first employee in Romania, as financial and administrative director and later stayed on as a business partner and board member, having both strategic level responsibilities as well as operational responsibilities in the countries in the region.
In the summer of 2015, I decided to build my own consultancy business and to dedicate my expertise to the support of entrepreneurs. Most of my clients are small/medium companies that do not have a financial director and for which we design reporting systems and procedures, a Dashboard and we work towards permanent optimization, both from the point of view of the margin as well as that of the costs. We also offer accounting and fiscal consultancy services, but integrated into the financial management component, a strong differentiator for us.”
C&B: What were your visions as a child/adolescent and what are they now?
Ioana Arsenie: “I was raised with a profound respect for work as the only option to achieve excellence. I don’t believe in shortcuts, but I have learned in time how to value opportunities better and to involve myself in projects in which each party to the project takes on their responsibilities. I say this because sometimes there is this reflex to externalize the project totally to the consultant, and this situation leads to faulty implementation.”
C&B: Please tell us a positive and a negative anecdote/experience related to your activity!
Ioana Arsenie: “There is a good side, an opportunity in every experience. A partner’s lack of seriousness has in fact brought value to me because through the particular and tangible loss I became aware of certain wrong decisions that were made based on trust. They are business experiences, which are normal in a controlled proportion and which we are all familiar with.
Good experiences are correlated with the contribution that we bring day by day, with the pursuit of excellence. By bringing clarity to the entrepreneurs, at the level of the figures, we see how leaps in their evolution happen, with direct impact to the profitability of their business and their net income.”
C&B: What advice do you have for people who are just starting out or are undecided?
Ioana Arsenie: “If we are talking about entrepreneurship, because time is money, my advice is to have clarity as soon as possible regarding the business elements that they don’t have a firm grasp of and to complete these gaps by turning to the right specialists. Secondly, I advise any startup to define clear objectives, limits on the budgets they spend. I say this because the vast majority of businesses in Romania stay at the start-up level as far as the figures are concerned, without having a healthy orientation towards profit.”
C&B: Please give us your own definition of companies, businesses and careers in Romania!
Ioana Arsenie: “I think that the values are the ones that make the difference in every context, sooner or later. Because many times success is not attributed on merit, in our society there are a lot of traps and this perception has formed that there can be shortcuts to get to the top. This leads to employees not having any more patience, they expect to burn through steps and stages, not justified by the results they have, without a correct career plan, this being a real challenge for entrepreneurs.”