I vividly remember driving to my first peer forum meeting. I was thinking I don’t have time for this! What am I doing? Who are these people? Am I worthy to be there? What am I going to bring to the group? Do I belong? Am I going to fit in? Who is this facilitator […]Continue reading
The New Role of the CFO
Here is a curated combination of research sources in case you missed them, all articulating the rapidly evolving role of the CFO. The question is, where are you (if you are a CFO/senior financial executive) or where is your CFO/senior financial executive (if you are a CEO/President/General Manager) going to learn how to truly become a better co-pilot?
“If CFOs think they have a lonely job, they should go talk to their CEOs. There are not many people a CEO can turn to for sharing questions or doubts, or to get frank answers to tough questions. Here is where CFOs can make their mark. Looking back at my own experiences working closely with CEOs, I believe CFOs are best positioned to be the CEO’s right hand, the person the CEO can trust to have informed opinions on company issues and candidly discuss the business. Typically, nobody understands the entire company quite as well as the CFO”.
“The role of the chief financial officer is expanding. Our latest CFO survey found that these execs have increasing influence in organizations, with more roles reporting directly to the CFO. Between 2018 and 2021, the share of roles reporting to the CFO rose in functions including procurement, investor relations, and digital”.
“By taking the lead in enhancing financial acumen and other capabilities throughout the company, CFOs can raise their leadership profiles and their organization’s game”
Five Insights for Public Company CFOs from Private Equity, which we think apply to any CFO, public or private and, in particular, to Private Equity backed company CFOs.
“CFOs of public companies can draw enormous insight from PE’s focused, proactive approach to value creation—but they have to take the initiative themselves. Here are five lessons to get started”.
- Focus relentlessly on value creation
- Define and incent ambitious but achievable targets
- Become an authority on every facet of the business
- Embrace an investor mindset
- Establish finance as a talent factory
“New research shows that now is the time for finance leaders to lean into the evolution of their roles and reassert themselves as strategic partners and digital enablers to the business”.
“Governing boards face increasing pressure and greater scrutiny from investors. Here is how CFOs can reinforce their stewardship”.
“Today’s CFOs are expected to play four diverse and challenging roles. The two traditional roles are steward, preserving the assets of the organization by minimizing risk and getting the books right, and operator, running a tight finance operation that is efficient and effective. It’s increasingly important for CFOs to be strategists, helping to shape overall strategy and direction, and catalysts, instilling a financial approach and mind set throughout the organization to help other parts of the business perform better. These varied roles make a CFO’s job more complex than ever”.
“CEOs and boards increasingly want CFOs to not only deliver a finance organization that gets the numbers right, but also partner with them in shaping the company’s strategy”.
The question is, where are you (if you are a CFO/senior financial executive) or where is your CFO/senior financial executive (if you are a CEO/President/General Manager) going to learn how to truly become a better co-pilot?