It’s that time of year again! Everywhere you look, companies and organizational associations are naming their CFOs of the Year. These include Kristin Reichert of Zimbra, who integrated her enterprise and software expertise to push the boundaries of the traditional CFO role. She has been recognized for her outstanding performance and commitment to corporate financial stewardship. Another CFO of the Year includes Gregg Ham, who has served Newark Recycled Paperboard Solutions since 2011. Now, the company pulls in excess of $50 million in revenue. Whether it’s Kristin, Gregg, or the CFO of a major corporation, financial leaders are generally recognized as the fiscal year comes to an end.
So you didn’t win CFO of the Year this time, but that’s perfectly fine! After all, not everyone can win. Still, if you want to improve your performance and better serve your company, it’s important to know where and how you can improve.
Here are a few of the traits that CFOs of the Year have in common:
- They read ravenously. Whether it’s the latest financial reports or industry-related news, CFOs of the Year indicate that they read whatever they can get their hands on. The more information you have circulating through your consciousness, the better decisions you can make for your company. By staying up-to-date with the latest in economic news and financial trends, you will be an indispensible asset.
- They set the context. When it comes to pursuing avenues of growth through IT or digital media, CFOs must make the case to executive management that those strategies are worth it. In other words, CFOs set the context for their goals and define the conversation. Setting the context is imperative, especially if you’re pushing for a new strategy or a risky endeavor.
- They are aware of their surroundings. Awareness is critical to the success of today’s CFO. As traditional responsibilities are coupled with organizational duties, CFOs are increasingly interacting with more key players. This means that you must be aware of your surroundings and the various functions of your company. By staying aware, CFOs can better integrate various workflow processes into a cohesive strategy that grows the business.
By embracing these principles, you will distinguish yourself as a finance professional dedicated to excellence and growing your company. Regardless of the ‘CFO of the Year’ title, you can be proud to champion your company’s goals.