Kathy Kranz

Episode 16: Kathy Kranz

Kathy Kranz is Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Pinnacol Assurance, which is the largest workers’ compensation company in Colorado. They have 100 years of experience and back 57,000 Colorado companies.

She oversees all the financial reporting, business planning, enterprise risks, audits, and actuarial functions. Her accomplishments include developing a four-year plan to ensure Pinnacol’s profitability and working with Standard & Poor’s to secure a strong financial rating for Pinnacol.

The Denver Business Journal named her as one of the Top Financial Executives.

She’s also worked in senior leadership at PriceWaterhouseCoopers and M.D.C Holdings, and RiskCap (now a part of Beecher Carlson)

She holds a degree in Business Administration from University of Michigan and an MBA from Regis University. She’s also a graduate of the Denver Metro Chamber’s Leadership Program.

Kathy's Linkedin Profile

Pinnacol Website


  • Kathy's story of getting a standing ovation at work.
  • Kathy’s story of rising from analysts to CFO in just a 10-year span.
  • How to know when you’re ready for the next level.
  • Advice for women who want to rise to the C-Suite.
  • How to foster a positive reputation.
  • The keys to establishing work-life balance.
  • Three ESSENTIAL strategies to communicate your idea to the C-Suite.
  • Why the cost of employee turnover can be catastrophic.
  • The one thing you must do when you have a big set back.
  • The daily practice (and resource) that Kathy uses to fuel her professional development.


What were Kathy’s keys to success to rise to C-Suite:

  • Not being afraid to do new and challenging things.
  • Always learning new things.
  • Having fun.

Kathy’s advice for women rising to C-Suite:

  • Be authentic.
  • Your CEO needs to be someone who wants to hear your opinion.
  • You have to be willing to share your opinions.
  • Expect that people won’t always agree with you.

What would make it easier for Kathy to say ‘yes’ to employee’s idea:

  • Distill 3-5 most compelling reasons why your idea is good.
  • Schedule a shorter, 15 minute meeting.


“Consider how you process ideas and information. I process by debating. I want to talk it through, I want to have a good, solid discussion about it.”

“It's important to remember, not everybody thinks exactly the same way you do.”


Harvard Business Review

McKinsey Newsletter


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