September 15, 2023

6 Growth Tips for a First-Time CFO

In today’s commercial climate, the role of the CFO is morphing from being solely process-focused to revenue and growth-focused. Here are some growth insights to help you ace your journey as a first-time CFO.

CFO Growth Tips

So… you’ve just begun your journey as a CFO and the first thought on your mind may be “I don’t want to mess this up” or “I want to make the most of this…”. The first thing is how to bring about growth as a CFO.

First of all, congratulations! It’s not an easy feat but you are here because you put in the hard work and it sure is paying off.

In today’s commercial climate, the role of the CFO is morphing from being solely process-focused to revenue and growth-focused. Successful CFOs, whether experienced or new to the role, are striving to understand how they can impact their organizations beyond their daily financial activities. To truly thrive in your career and organization, you will benefit from adopting a growth-first mindset from the get-go.

In this article, we will share some growth insights to help you ace your journey as a first-time CFO. Some of these may be familiar while others may offer fresh perspectives for you.

Develop a sustainable growth mindset:

This starts with understanding what drives growth within your organization and the huge role that your company’s financial data trends play in it. To understand growth, you need to first understand who your ideal customer is. Get more knowledgeable about their needs, desires, spending habits, and so on to learn what truly drives their purchasing decisions.

I know you may be thinking, “How does this concern me?” but the modern CFO cannot afford to be disinterested in the growth efforts of their organization. Disinterest is a quick way to become obsolete.

Leverage your organization’s financial data for revenue creation:

Your organization’s financial data is a goldmine for uncovering additional revenue opportunities. What trends can you leverage to drive additional revenue for your company? What past and current purchasing decisions signify product expansion options? What products are costing too much and yielding too little? Will the company be better off discontinuing them or selling at a premium price? Your financial data holds the answers to these pivotal questions.

Financial laws are your friend. Get to know them:

As a CFO, understanding financial regulations and laws is essential. Compliance not only ensures your organization operates within legal boundaries but also protects its reputation. Invest time in staying informed about relevant financial regulations and seek legal counsel when needed to navigate complex compliance issues effectively.

Automate. Automate. Automate!:

Why spend valuable time manually completing payments and having back-and-forth conversations with your team about payment approvals?

Embrace technology and automation tools to streamline and automate financial processes. Automation reduces errors, saves cost, increases efficiency, and frees up your time to focus on strategic initiatives, and Duplo is excellent at this. Through our range of innovative products and features, you can automate your payments, collections, expense management, reconciliation, and workflows with ease.

You are as good as your research. Stay up-to-date:

To excel as a CFO, try to keep up with industry trends, emerging technologies, and market shifts. Regularly reading financial publications, attending industry conferences, joining industry conversations on social media, and networking with peers can help you stay ahead of the curve and make informed decisions that drive growth.

A simple and quick way to stay updated is by setting Google Alerts for topics that interest you and joining our ECFO community.

Expect to make mistakes. It’s a part of the journey:

No one is perfect, especially in a role as complex as a CFO. Don’t fear making mistakes; instead, view them as opportunities for learning and improvement. When you encounter challenges or make mistakes, assess them objectively, adjust your strategies, ask for help, and use the lessons learned to make better financial decisions in the future. Remember that growth often involves taking calculated risks and learning from successes and setbacks. You’ve got this!

We wish you all the best and we hope these insights are beneficial to your journey. If you have any other insights for fellow CFOs share them on LinkedIn or Twitter and tag us @tryduplo.

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