Discover a Dragon Series: Ashton Lane, CFO
Ashton Lane is the CFO you’d never see coming. She’s as sweet as she is smart. She’s a strong quiet type. And she has the world’s coolest side gig as a competitive skydiver. Yep, you got that right. She jumps out of airplanes (for fun) in cool formations with others. So if you ever wonder why Dragon Army is such a boldly distinct agency, Ashton’s name can come high on your list of reasons.
Share a project or partnership that gives us a snapshot into your work.
I don’t do client work, but a project I’m proudest of is having set up a tool for all of our people. It keeps all our business metrics in place for everyone in the company to see and understand. It’s not often you see a company that offers all its financial data in real time. It helps all our team members keep a pulse on where we are as a company. They can see and feel their impact, and it leads them to feel like owners. It’s a reason why we have such a passionate team.
The other thing I’m proud of is designing the Great Game with our leadership team and members of the company. It helps us to understand what levers to pull to get to success. Also, it’s a way to gamify our efforts and give people a chance to have an impact and make a difference outside their everyday tasks. It’s another way we help everyone in the company feel like owners.
What attracted you to Dragon Army or why have you built your career here?
I was consulting for a few businesses, and Dragon Army was one of my clients. The opportunity presented itself to come on full-time, and I was thrilled. The people made all the difference. I was ecstatic to join such a passionate team. Finance isn’t all that exciting but getting to do it with people who are so talented and exciting makes me feel excited and like I’m making a difference with my work.
What Dragon Army core value resonates with you most and why?
Thinking positively. It’s so applicable to everything we do for the business, in the business, and in our personal lives. If you can put a positive spin on things, it gives you a perspective that allows you to learn, teach, and move forward. It’s not always easy and it doesn’t come naturally for everyone, myself included, but it makes a huge difference in our lives and in the lives of our clients as well. It presents a lot of value. I love that it’s one of our values. It reminds us to think about what good to take from everything, even when it’s tough.
Give a snapshot into your day to help us understand your area of expertise.
I think about my day as more than the hours I’m at the computer. I get up and walk our Boston Terrier, Zoe, while I listen to a podcast. Monday when I’m extra motivated, I’m probably listening to a business podcast. By Friday I might be listening to something simpler and more purely uplifting. It all depends on my mood and what I need that day.
I’m a bit of a list maker and love to check things off, so I start the day by prioritizing what I need to accomplish. Then I figure out how to tackle each one. Even though I promise myself I’ll take a walk or go to the gym over lunch, my day doesn’t always allow it, but it definitely happens before the end of the day. After a session at the gym, I walk Zoe in the evening while listening to whatever I started on our morning walk. After dinner with my husband, we’ll usually watch an episode of a show to decompress (right now it’s Peaky Blinders). We hit the sack early and do it again the next day.