This month's CFO magazine has a good article on what it takes for the CFO to become a "true partner in setting company strategy." By Russ Banham.
Here are the key points from the article:
- management/leadership ability
- ability to think strategically
- insight & vision
- intellectual curiosity
- solves complex problems
- experience in finance and operations ("finance and business talent")
- understand the business "end-to-end"
- knowledge of the whole thought process around strategic objectives
- manage costs AND help drive growth
- continued relentless focus on cost containment
- provide facts & analytical truths
- execute (turn ideas into reality)
- "quantify and contextualize a path to myth-bust and to disrupt the status quo"
- understand the needs of business units and business functions, especially their growth initiatives
- resource allocation
Tools to use
- financial and operational analytics
- analysis of customer data
- predictive analytics (insights)
- healthy debate (over strategic direction)
- spend time on the front lines
Relationship with the CEO
- partner with the CEO to help chart strategic growth
- ability to voice independent, fact-based opinions
- "depersonalize the debate"
- hold collaborative dialogues
- be the "critical bridge in the value-creation process" between CEO and Business Units
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