As CFO, you can be the best in the world (for your business), but if your team is not up to par, you and your company will suffer. A key foundation for a CFO’s success is their Finance Team (see bottom of my CFO Relationship Map). CFOs I have spoken with agree that A Strong CFO needs a Strong Finance Team.
How does a CFO build their Finance Dream Team?
By having a Talent Plan. Your Talent Plan needs these key components:
1) Vision. What do you want to accomplish as CFO?
2) Needs Assessment. What talent do you need to support you in attaining your CFO Vision? What are your needs today? What will they be in the future?
3) Team Assessment. Assess your current team critically. Do they, individually and as a group, currently have the knowledge, skills and abilities (KSAs) you need to accomplish Vision? Will your team be able to meet your needs in the future?
4) Hire, Promote, Train and Unhire. Once you know your what your needs are and what your team can deliver to you, you need to activate decisions by hiring and unhiring key people, as well as training and promoting those that can deliver.
5) Continuous Hiring. Having a continuous hiring plan is beneficial. (Read: When Should a CFO Hire?)
Sounds simple. Yet most CFOs I speak with agree that this is difficult to implement. With CFOs having so many things to get done, Talent Planning and Management takes too much time for most CFOs to put the necessary effort and focus into it.
Here are some tips on how busy CFOs can accomplish each component of their Talent Plan.
1) Advice & Coaching. Working with an internal resource (HR) or an external resource (executive search firm) can be very beneficial in putting your Talent Plan together – from Vision to Continuous Hiring. CFO Coaching in particular can allow you the resource to become a better CFO while preparing your plan to become one. (Read: CFOs: 5 Reasons why you need an Executive Coach.)
2) Outsource key time-suckers. The hiring process takes a lot of time. Many CFOs are under the impression that they can make great recruiters, with the idea that they don’t have to pay a fee. Working with an executive search firm that you trust will not only make the process easier, but will add value to you and your company. (Read: Executive Search: Do CFOs understand the difference between Cost & Value?)
3) Build your leadership team first. Let your leaders build their team so they can deliver to you.
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