CFO Volatility – 2014

The latest Crist | Kolder Associates volatility report was recently released. Those releases are always fun reading in my office as I compare what they say with what I’ve been seeing. This report is no exception!

Here are a few highlights, along with my thoughts.

CFOs and COOs

For quite some time we saw upheaval in the C-suite as Chief Operations Officers were being replaced by operational Chief Financial Officers. While, according to Crist Kolder, that situation seems to have stabilized, COO turnover is expected to rise while CFO turnover is expected to drop. Maybe that has a good deal to do with long-term incentive compensation plans.

That said, despite the seeming trend, I agree with Mr. Kolder …

Tom Kolder, president of the recruiter, says he wouldn’t be surprised if there were a solid or even “dramatic” uptick in CFO turnover over the next few months.

… which is based solely on the number of prospect inquiries I’ve been getting over the last few weeks. According to the CK report, we’ll see the highest CFO turnover within the healthcare and industrial sectors.

Investment banking vs. CPAs

Crist | Kolder reports that while 30% of Fortune & S&P 500 company CFOs hold CPAs, for the first time ever 10% have investment banking backgrounds.

Will we see the CPA requirement begin to lose its luster? I know lots of non-CPAs who hope so.

External candidate hires

According to Crist | Kolder, an astounding 55% of external hires were sitting CFOs.

In my opinion, that’s good news on both fronts. Sitting CFOs are still marketable (with the right value message to the right target audience) and there’s a 45% block of opportunity for the rising stars.

Women in the CFO Seat

And one last tidbit.

The number of female CFOs is at an all-time high, having doubled in the last 10 years. Competition for the coveted Finance Chief role is coming from yet another direction.

See, I told you there was exciting reading in the Crist | Kolder volatility report!

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