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Jim Finkelstein - FutureSense, LLC. San Rafael, CA, US

Jim Finkelstein

President and CEO | FutureSense, LLC


A contrarian who is a stimulating speaker; an expert in people and organization strategy and a "millennial in boomer clothing"



Jim Finkelstein Publication



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MY LIFE. What a wonderful ride! The lenses I have looked through include being a parent, husband, friend, Big Brother, YMCA camp counselor, entrepreneur, child psychology and economics major, soccer referee, book author, movie producer, non-profit Board member, singer and actor, start-up company domain expert, and above all, a learning member of and contributor to the communities in which I have lived. I have been a Fortune 500 executive, a CEO of a subsidiary of a publicly traded company, a partner in a major accounting firm, a coach, a consultant and an employer.

MY INSPIRATION. Call me a dreamer or a perpetual fixer, but I believe people can be happier at their jobs and organizations can be more effective at what they do. I want this thing called work to be more fun and more engaging. I am a student and a leader of people and organizations. Understanding what motivates people and what melts their butter pays off as a consultant helping people in business move the meter. For me, work is about blending my business side and my helping side. And I believe in efficiency and common sense. Speed of Thought, Speed of Action and Speed of Results™ is my mantra.

MY INTEREST IN THE COGENERATIONAL WORKPLACE(tm). As a Boomer, I work with Millennials — my son, my web designer and several people on staff at my consulting firm, FutureSense. As a young man, I worked with both adults in planning Model Congresses and with kids in being a unit leader in camp. At Trinity College (CT), I published research on the effectiveness of adult/child companionship (the Big Brother program). Throughout my life I had great advisors. As an adult, I have been a coach (to both of my sons), a mentor, a board member, and have worked extensively with older and younger people. I have always spanned the 18-80 age frontiers. I’ve tapped the power of the Cogenerational Workplace™ and want to help other organizations and people do it too. That’s why I wrote FUSE and launched THE FUSE PROJECT.

MY ORIGINS. My first summer job at YMCA Camp Becket (MA) taught me why excellence in communications, building a foundation of solid values, and having fun is essential to effective collaboration. I had a chance to test my theories at The Wharton School where I went to get my MBA to go into Social Work. I sat in my jeans and a t-shirt surrounded by classmates all wanting to go to Wall Street and discovered my love for organization development and coaching, counseling and consulting.

Industry Expertise (7)

Professional Training and Coaching

Human Resources

Management Consulting

Corporate Training

Training and Development

Corporate Leadership

Talent Management

Areas of Expertise (8)

Compensation: Reward and Motivation in the 21st Century

Organization Communications: Effective Employee Engagement

The New Cogenerational Workplace: From 18-80

Boards of Directors: Ethics and Responsibilities

The People Dimension: Environment




Accomplishments (2)

Book Author - FUSE: Making Sense of the New Cogenerational Workplace (professional)

For employees and business leaders ages eighteen to eighty, a manual to building a team that's electrified by cogenerational collaboration. Published by Greenleaf Book Group Pres, Austin, TX. Website:

Humanitarian of the Year, YMCA of San Francisco (personal)

Was honored as the Humanitarian of the Year, the top volunteer award in the YMCA of San Francisco, the 7th largest YMCA in the country, in recognition of leadership and service.

Education (2)

Wharton School (University of Pennsylvania): M.B.A., Management (Organization Behavior and Development) 1976

Worked as Associate Director of Alumni Affairs while attending school full-time.

Trinity College (Hartford, CT): B.A., Psychology and Economics 1974

Senior thesis on The Impact of Companionship Therapy on the Developing Social Profile of a Father-Absent Male published in Journal of Big Brothers Practices, 1976. Morris Prize for Excellence in Music (as a non-music major); Member, Pi Gamma Mu (Social Science Honor Society)

Affiliations (2)

  • Society for Human Resource Management
  • Human Capital Institute

Testimonials (1)

Pat McGowan, President and CEO | Halogen/2012 Users Conference

“OK, now my management team is onboard with the FUSE approach. My partner and VP devoured the book and is a convert. One of our bright light managers is in the middle of it. It is now required reading. As soon as the old folks finish with it, it will be making the rounds in the ‘treefort’. We have seen profound changes in our workforce after less than a week. Thank You Again!!!”

Event Appearances (8)

Opening Speaker & Session Speaker

Healthcare Human Resource Management Association of California  San Diego, CA


Keynote Speaker

Global Equity Organization (GEO) Conference  National Harbor, MD



Bank of Marin: Breakfast Seminar  Corte Madera, CA



San Antonio Community Hospital: Executive Retreat  Lake Arrowhead, CA



VHA - Mid-America Executive Leadership Conference  Las Vegas, NV



Freeman Health System - Executive Briefing  Joplin, MO



Argle Executive Human Resource Forum  San Francisco



Human Capital Institute  Webinar


Sample Talks (5)

Making Sense of the New Cogenerational Workplace

There's no doubt that the differences between employees fresh out of school and their more seasoned counterparts are vast. This talk will show you how to create a mashup that fuses the experience and command of Boomers with the techno-smart and boundaryless thought of Millennials. It will help you find the fusions - the places of fertile cooperation, collaboration and collegiality - that lead to an exhilarating, respectful and fun work experience. It will deliver a compelling vision of how an organization can capture the energy wasted by generational divisiveness to cogenerate more productivity and satisfaction in the workplace than ever before.

Business Leadership – For a Better Tomorrow

As we continue to struggle through economic volatility and the psychological effects of the Great Recession, leadership for a better tomorrow has never seemed more important. Business leaders find themselves working in an entirely new marketplace—where people are more concerned about security than prosperity, more cautious than confident, more cooperative than competitive. Increased awareness of life’s uncertainty is causing people everywhere to reassess the way they do business. Business leaders must respond courageously to the mood of the nation with their own reassessment and reorganization that reflects this new mood. For a better tomorrow, business leadership must respond to people’s needs for security, caution, and cooperation while sustaining market prosperity, confidence, and competitiveness. We must reassess and reorganize for success in the marketplace, while also re-evaluating how success is measured. This presentation focuses on the critical skills necessary to be a leader, as well as the challenges involved in realizing leadership. Participants will learn practical steps to support their leadership abilities.

Melting the Butter of the Millennials: A Compensation Manual for the 21st Century

The Millennials, those from roughly 18-29, is 25-30 million strong. They have communications attributes that differ markedly from their predecessors (i.e., tech savvy); a growing lack of workplace skills and understanding; a collective inability to find a clear, satisfying career path; an 80% rate of job dissatisfaction, and a very high cost of turnover ($75k per). They also have tremendous energy, creativity, intuition, and networking skills. Organizations need to create a fit between the 20th century workplace and the 21st century workforce. One of the major challenges is to find the right fit of compensation programs that will truly “melt the butter” of both boomers and millennials alike! This presentation is a new age “compensation operations manual” with concise, humorous and very visual content – developed and presented by the speakers – a father/son team -from both the boomers’ and the millennials’ perspectives. It will be accompanied by a complimentary copy of the speaker’s new book: FUSE: Making Sense of the New Cogenerational Workplace

People – The Forgotten Frontier

As Peter Drucker so aptly noted, organizations routinely say that people are our greatest asset. Yet few practice what they preach, let alone truly believe it. Despite the heightened awareness prompted by the tragedy of September 11th, through Enron, to the Great Recession of 2008-2011, this still rings true. People are the forgotten frontier in American business. They have been for the last 100 years, and they will be for the next 100 years unless organizations develop the workplace for the people who inhabit it. This presentation focuses on understanding the People Dimension™ —our approach to optimizing environment, culture, development, and motivation. Participants will learn how organizations can create a successful workplace for people through the right blend of these four critical dimensions and begin to assess their own organization’s effectiveness in the People Dimension.

A Challenge in Credibility: Is Your Board Above Board?

What does it mean to be a board? What is the appropriate level of accountability? And more importantly, is your board above board? From the Enron debacle to the pending debate about the Penn State University Board of Trustees, organizations would do well to reassess performance at the top. If it was not abundantly clear before, let the learning begin. Success without accountability is just failure in disguise and the public (not to mention the justice department) is justifiably unforgiving when—shall we say—“errors in judgment” are revealed. This presentation focuses on a complete approach to assessing Board success through knowledge, process, leadership and representation. Participants will have the opportunity to review common mistakes made by public and private Boards. The presentation is supported by a Board assessment survey that can be returned to FutureSense for confidential scoring and analysis.



  • Keynote
  • Moderator
  • Panelist
  • Workshop Leader
  • Host/MC
  • Author Appearance


5000 to 25000 *Will consider certain engagements for no fee