Ever wonder how to become a brilliant CFO (chief financial officer)? CFOs head the finance departments at public and private corporations. Most CFOs are high ranking executives, second only to the chief executive officer. Becoming a successful, brilliant CFO takes hard work and diligence, though a few key pointers will speed the way.
- To become a brilliant CFO, you must know your finance. CFOs are responsible for the financial health of their respective company. A key part of any CFOs job is financing operations (production, payroll, marketing, capital investing, etc.). Brilliant CFOs come up with creative ways to finance their company while paying the lowest interest rates possible on that borrowed money. A rock solid knowledge of finance and financial products allows a CFO to consider financing options other less sophisticated CFOs may not be aware of.
- Make connections within your industry. To properly plan for the future, a CFO must be aware of what is going on in the industry around him. Adequate industry knowledge can stave off potential financial difficulties down the road as well as make a brilliant CFO aware of what other competitors are doing (with regard to financing operations). By being thoroughly versed in their particular industries, CFOs are better able to allocate a limited amount of financing dollars to various operations within the company.
- Communicate with investors. Brilliant CFOs not only manage the financial health of their companies, they regularly report to investors and potential investors. Keeping the lines of communication open with these very important groups will make future financing easier. An investor base that is well aware of company operations, potentials for success, and roadblocks are more likely to pony up the dollars than an uninformed investor base.
- Communicate internally with all departments. A CFO’s position is not a secluded job. Regular contact with investors, bankers, the board of directors, customers and co-workers is required to prosper in the position. Within a corporation, a CFO must be aware of each individual department's needs in order to properly allocate financial resources. Brilliant CFOs have open lines of communication within their own companies to forestall any internal problems before they have a chance to impact sales or service.
A CFO occupies a position of importance within any company. Although it is difficult to become a brilliant CFO, it can be done with hard work and dedication. Knowing financial products well, being intimately familiar with their industry, and having open communication inside and outside the company will propel a CFO to success.