‘We Grow As one’
On paper, Mike Muccio’s role looks intimidating: Co-office managing Partner of New York’s CFGI office.
But he will be the first to tell you that this is a supporting role in a cast of stars he calls his co-workers and friends. He would say that they’re the ones who do the heavy lifting every day, and that his responsibility is to make sure they have everything they need to excel.
Be that as it may, Mike is still one of the many hard-working individuals who make the New York office so important to CFGI. In 2015, he joined Chris Nyers in what was supposed to be an interim position to help the company get settled in the Big Apple.
“When Mike joined the New York office, the two of us hit it off immediately and I knew he was the right person to help us grow in this market,” Nyers said. “His dynamic personality, determination and energy were exactly what we needed to help build the CFGI brand in New York.”
Five years on, Mike still makes the weekly commute from his home in Burlington, Massachusetts, to Manhattan (where he has an apartment) to put his business-development acumen to work, and to lend a sympathetic ear to every one of his 200 co-workers.
Mental health advocate, CFGI mentor, bonafide people person
Mike is originally from Tewksbury, a town 40 minutes north of Boston. He attended Bentley College for accounting before landing his first gig at KPMG. It was during this time that he had one of the defining experiences of his life.
“I was diagnosed with panic disorder when I was 27,” Mike said. “And I think when you go through what I went through, you wake up and you’re just glad to be here every day.”
It took nine months of examinations to conclude that what felt like recurring heart attacks were in fact panic attacks. Experts at McLean Hospital in Massachusetts played a crucial role in helping him manage the disorder, and Mike was grateful for it.
He joined the McLean Hospital Board of Visitors in 2014, just a year before taking up his post in New York. Today, he’s an active mental health advocate dedicated to destigmatizing mental illness and sharing his story with the people who need to hear it most.
The experience affected his life in other less expected ways. For instance, it’s one of the reasons he excels at building relationships with the people around him.
“There are people who go through personal things, professional difficulties, and I think it’s important that they know I’m there for them,” Mike said. “So I meet or have a call with every one of my employees every month.”
When Mike first started in New York, there were only 10 employees. Today there are 200. And yes, Mike sets aside one-on-one time for all of them each month – in addition to the other tasks he might tackle on any given day:
- Meeting with partners and managing directors to discuss pipeline opportunities.
- Planning the logistics of a move into a new office.
- Having lunch with prospects.
- Getting on the phone with prospects.
- Drafting proposals for prospects.
- Negotiating with prospects to finalize new engagements.
- Visiting current clients outside the office.
- Helping partners and managing directors with whatever questions might come up.
- Coordinating and attending events with prospects and employees.
All of these responsibilities are central to CFGI’s ongoing business development efforts, but a company is, at the end of the day, only as successful as its people.
And that’s precisely why Mike goes to such great lengths to support them any way he can.
“People open up to me about a lot of things,” Mike said. “If you were to name any one of my employees I can tell you something unique going on in their life right now, which to me, is the most important thing. I do not pretend to care about them, I genuinely view them as an extension of my family.”
Every office could use a Mike Muccio
The New York office is a flagship for CFGI, a company that, since being founded in 2000, has grown its headcount to over 500 employees and earned backing from none other than The Carlyle Group.
On average, CFGI adds one new client every day. Mike chalks this success up to one thing:
“We operate as one team,” he said. “I always tell the group, ‘we grow as one,’ and it’s true. We get referrals for new clients at every level of CFGI, and we don’t operate under a hierarchy. No one is more important than anyone else, and there is always something to learn from everybody else.”
As rewarding as his team’s success over the years has been, nothing is more important to Mike than his wife and his two kids, who he makes a point to spend every minute with when he’s away from his New York apartment and at his house in Burlington.
“I miss my kids like crazy,” Mike said. “But I also feel like I have 200 kids in New York, so it’s pretty cool to be able to do both.”
Ask any one of his co-workers, and they would tell you it’s pretty cool to have him here, too.
“What I admire most about Mike is how much he genuinely cares about others,” Nyers said. “He inspires everyone he works with, which has created a culture in the New York office that I believe is truly special. He’s an exceptional partner, leader, mentor and friend.”