Month: Dec 2017

Intelligent Analysis – Finance Director Europe Article

I had the pleasure of co-authoring this article on BI and Analytics with one of our Brain Trust Anders Lui Lindberg, which gives some very simple advice on how to get started.

Some people may get the power of BI and Analytics, others may see it a “buzzwords” and “not for me” but in a data driven world, it is here to stay and is also becoming more and more central to the new CFO tool kits and finance function capability.

Read the full article here

4 Practical Tips: How To Set Yourself Up For Innovation And Success

By Damian A. Clarke, group member since December 2017.

Making innovation a core company value can enhance your opportunity for greater success. Start by letting your staff, especially finance and accounting know you are looking for ways to improve the way the company operates. Here are some other ways to set yourself up for innovation and success.

Collaboration

Many companies encourage cross-departmental exchange and solicit ideas from every level. Others come up with a list of specific, long-term problems that employees can help solve. More importantly, the first step is to let your staff that know that new ideas and improved efficiencies is the way forward. By making collaborative thinking part of your culture, you’re on your way to a stronger competitive advantage.

Make Diverse Hires

It starts with the people. Bringing together people from all walks of life will also foster greater innovation. More than ever before, one-size-fits-all solutions aren’t going to work. Across departments, you want to build a team with varied skill sets as well as backgrounds. This means hiring beyond the core qualifications that a job requires and looking for the personalities that fit the culture you’re envisioning; It’s often the unique perspectives that will benefit your company. However don’t—of course—ignore a needed level of competency and qualifications. But, the person who also has the right perspective can contribute more to your company’s success than someone who simply fulfills a job description.

Invest In IT

Every organization needs to stay at the forefront of technology. From tracking inventory to automating functions to digital marketing, improved technology provides cost-efficient, productivity-enhancing ways to do business. Your potential customers are always connected. So look at digital solutions such as an improved web experience or including social media as an integral part of any marketing plan. Don’t look at IT as a line item that’s dragging on company resources—instead, see technology as an investment in improving your organization’s processes.

A good finance department can help by looking at this function more strategically.

Be Decisive

Business trends are shifting faster than ever before. Therefore, leadership may need to be as quick in determining how to move forward. If the thought of making fast decisions causes you concern, then follow a process. Adopt a set of critical questions to ask before making a decision. Run each idea or proposal through this filter to determine if you should or shouldn’t move forward. When you respond quickly to employee ideas, they’ll be inspired to continue sharing ideas, even if the answer is no. Nothing slows down innovation more than apathy or indecisiveness from the leader.

For small- and medium-sized businesses, it’s critical to offer high value for customers. While, you might get caught up in the day-to-day concerns like cash flow and whether you can cover that next order, you need to stay focused on the big picture. Distinguishing your company’s from the competition isn’t always easy in today’s environment. However, by adopting practices for innovation, you can ensure sustainable growth for your business.

Originally published on GreySuits

Source: Generation CFO LI Group

BQs – What’s Finance’s role in creating value in a rapidly changing business model?

Finance must continue to create value to remain an integral part of the business, many thought leaders point to strategic business partnering as the solution.

But in a rapidly changing world, largely driven by technology change, “Black Swan” events, and business model disruption, what is Finance’s role in creating value in the business?

#BQs