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Angelo Pizzuto, Executive MBA ’22 candidate, CFO/Managing Director of Salient Finance Corp., on self-discovery, personal and professional growth

Angelo Pizzuto, Executive MBA ’22 candidate, had long hoped to complete an Executive MBA, but as a busy consultant to entrepreneurs and the co-founder of his own financial practice, the time never seemed right.

Still, he always felt an Executive MBA would solidify the business knowledge he’d developed during his 30-year career. As he helped some clients wind down operations because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Angelo found he finally had a window in which to pursue that Ivey education.

As he works through the second term of his Executive MBA, he’s finding the program isn’t just filling in knowledge gaps, but it’s also led to a rich professional network, lifelong friendships, and a personal journey that goes beyond refining his management skills.

“There’s a lot more self-discovery in the Executive MBA than people understand – the leadership courses lead a lot of introspection, and so there’s a lot of value,” says Angelo, CFO and Co-founder of Salient Finance Corp., provides fractional CFO Services and is a corporate finance firm serving mid-sized companies.

“I had thought of the Executive MBA more as rubber stamping your work experience. But there’s a lot of perspective and self-awareness, and you have to be willing to review who you are as a person.”

That’s helping Angelo change his own narrative and look at the work he does with his clients, as well as how he interacts with them, in a different way.

“For me changing the narrative was identifying the client in a different way and maybe being a little bit more expansive in terms of the type of client I work with and the work I want to do,” he says.

The relationships he’s developed with classmates through the learning teams and class interactions have also opened new doors for Pizzuto, who’s been brought into client work with a few of his fellow students.

But he’s also been able to immediately apply class teachings into his own consulting practice.

“I’ve gone back to some of my clients and said, ‘You should think about operations in a different way,’ or, ‘Go read this and come back to me,’” he says.

Angelo has also started to look ahead and think about what his legacy may be, as well as how he can help build a business community that considers sustainability to be a central tenant.

“At this stage in my career, I don’t think I’ll go back to an executive role, but as a consultant advisor, the Executive MBA gives me comfort in knowing that the choices I make are very important in the next step of my career and journey in life,” he says.

“The Executive MBA validated that some of the things I did were right, and it also validated that some of things I did were wrong, which is important to recognize. You truly learn and grow from those experiences.

If I had done my MBA when I started my business, and invested in the program then, I would have spent that money on my education instead of using it to pay for the mistakes I made. That makes the program more than worth its value.”

EMBA '22

Ivey Business School

Angelo Pizzuto

Angelo Pizzuto

CFO/Managing Director, Salient Finance Corp.

Toronto, Canada

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