No matter how large or slam your business is; you need a Chief Financial Officer! Business owners spend many hours learning and studying techniques in Sales and Marketing, Operations, Real Estate, Floor Planning but very little on financial techniques. I understand that finance is not sexy and it can seem overwhelming but I can argue it is the most important function in a business.
The solution is you need a CFO! Many make the mistake of thinking that their CPA or Book Keeper fill this role but they do not! While those professions are important; they are your bean counters; you need someone who knows how to buy and sell money!
Business is simply bartering and in the modern society we use money to simplify the batting process instead of exchanges goods or services. A good CFO knows how to setup lines of credit so that you have time to sell your product or service before you have to pay for them.
I can hear you thinking “That sounds great Rob, but I can not afford to hire a CFO!” The good news is that you do not have to! You can contract out this role!
So what to look for in a contract CFO:
- Experience: the finance field is all about the power of a CFO’s contacts and relationships. They need to know what financial products are available and who is offering them. The financial field changes often and the availability of certain financial products changes with every move of the economy whether the move is positive or negative.
- Knowledge and Creativity: A quality CFO is a problem solver; they will create a solution to whatever financial problem your company faces.
- Blunt: This role more than any other requires someone who is blunt and not a yes man! The CFO has to be blunt because plans are made based on the financial projections they make.
- Performance based: The true CFO will only agree to be compensated on a performance based model. If they do not preform they should not get paid but if they preform well they expect to be compensated well!
In full disclosure; I often take the role of a contract CFO with the companies I consult with and/or invest in under the terms listed above because a companies success or failure depends as much on the CFO as the CEO. Many CEO’s attempt to fill both roles and therefore do not do either very well. Buying and selling money os a full time job; being a CEO is also a full time job and while we all work a lot of hours it is not realistic to think you can do both and not drop the ball on one, the other or both.
Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to discuss considering me to act as your CFO.