In Demand CFOs

An opinion post appearing in the North Bay Business Journal certainly seems to be spot on in identifying the traits of an accomplished CFO. I’ll add my thoughts on two things that I believe are critically important.

<<As the role of the chief financial officer continues to evolve, the most effective CFOs are those who continue to add value beyond the traditional finance function and help deliver strong business results.>>

I doubt this is a surprise to any CFO. After all, today’s CFO has really morphed into a CFOO (Chief Financial Operations Officer) and in some instances, more of a CEO (Chief Everything Officer).

To be a competitive candidate for a finance leader position, the CFO or aspiring CFO must move outside the finance bubble.

Adding value matters. So does being able to effectively communicate how you add value that translates to tangible business impacts. Which leads me to the second point …

<<Other traits of an effective CFO include strong communication skills and the ability to listen attentively.>>

Soft skills are integral to the top-notch CFO. All the finance expertise in the world won’t matter if you cannot communicate with the Board, investors, the rest of the C-suite, clients or customers, bankers, your finance team, and intra-departmental teams as well as build trusted relationships with them in order to achieve corporate objectives.

I wrote this article in March, saying …

Companies understand brilliant Chief Finance Officers bring financial acumen and skills to the table. They also recognize that while industry knowledge can be taught and gained; teaching communication, relationship management, team building, and leadership is a much more difficult, and maybe even impossible, endeavor. 

I believe my comment is still very true today and will be true for the foreseeable future!

Copyright CFO-Coach 2017


Cindy Kraft is the CFO-Coach and America’s leading Career & Personal Brand Strategist for Corporate Finance Executives helping clients understand their marketability, articulate their value, and position themselves as the clear and compelling choice. She is a Certified Reach Personal Brand Strategist, Certified Reach Online Identity Strategist, Certified Career Management Coach, Credentialed Career Master, Certified Professional Resume Writer, and Job & Career Transition Coach. Cindy can be reached via email, by phone 813-727-3037, or through her website at