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Brian Zapf: On Loving Numbers, People and Telling A Financial Story That Soars

Can You Love Numbers AND People? Yes.

Brian Zapf is a multi-passionate guy whose love of numbers and of helping people has dictated a clear career path: long before he knew it himself. Born and raised in Dayton, Ohio, and having attended the University of Michigan, Brian tells us in this episode that he wasn’t sure how he would blend his interpersonal skills with his ability to tell the story behind the numbers. After graduating with no clear, professional prospects, Brian moved back home with his parents and got a job at a bakery hoping inspiration would strike. It did. All it took was a conversation with the owner of the bakery about what he wanted with his life for him to land a job at a local, community-owned bank as a teller. The story is worth a listen to the full episode. It was there that Brian uncovered his love of financial advisory, and realized he wanted to accomplish it on a bigger scale.

Connecting the Dots

Brian only narrowly passed his only accounting class as an undergrad. He majored in Political Science and Economics but knew that working with other businesses was a career path he was interested in pursuing and that accounting was the language of business. How does a student who only just passed an undergrad accounting class become a fractional CFO of SaaS and eLearning companies who increases profits & cash flow and has created $1 Billion+ of value for 100+ customers? We’ll let him tell you by listening to the full episode.

Brian went to the Kelley School of Business to earn his MBA, right when the recession hit. While he watched his classmates’ offers get rescinded one by one, Brian used the lesson he learned in undergrad and learned to network this time around. He was fortunate enough to get a position in MA through an alumni connection. Brian paraphrases Dale Carnegy by saying that people want you to take an interest in them, and if you do, doors will open.

Taking Flight

When Brian found himself furloughed during the height of the pandemic, he realized two truths:

1. He wanted to help others establish financial success by way of financial forecasts in their businesses.

2. He wanted to take control of his future by working for himself.

He founded Flight Financial and has never looked back.

If you find yourself wondering what kinds of decisions you need to be making in order to secure the future success of your business, if you’re on the fence about whether to hire a Fractional CFO or bring someone on in-house or if you’re a founder who is looking for practical steps for how to prepare your business for a buyer - this is the episode for you.



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