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 Top 4 Tips on How to Become a Strategist CFO by Gary McGaghey

Gary McGaghey is a private equity specialist based in London. He has led many companies to immense growth in a variety of industries including private equity, privately-owned and many listed companies. He is a chartered accountant in South Africa and a management accountant in the UK. His advice is that the CFO’s role has changed over the years and now a lot is expected from anyone holding that position. It’s crucial every CFO works with a strategy. However, before that, their strategy choice has to revolve around the company’s goals and aspirations, services or products and the management systems.

According to the Private Equity Specialist Gary McGaghey, pairing financial discipline with the answers to the above areas can form an effective strategy process. Here are key ways to improve your strategy as a CFO:

  1. The Responder – this guides the strategy development by helping the top business leaders during quantitative analysis of the financial consequences of various strategies. It’s best for decentralized businesses and companies where the CEO has put a limit on the role of the CFO. To succeed as a responder, you must have a centralized financial planning and analysis so as to come up with relevant data for the company’s leaders.
  2. The Challenger – as a challenger, the CFO’s role is to lead the future value in the strategy process. You have to examine the risks related with each strategy option and the possible returns. You also have to minimize the associated risk while ensuring enough returns are realized from the strategies.
  3. The Architect – the CFO works together with the finance department and top business leaders to come up with key strategy decisions. The architect builds up on the challenger’s strategy while bringing in innovative initiatives through various strategies.
  4. The Transformer – lastly, the transformer collaborates with the CEO to execute the company’s strategy. The CFO has an important role in executing the financial and operational options geared towards delivering values, capabilities and improving the product market mix.

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Leading as Effective CFO

Regardless the role you play as CFO when it comes formulating the strategy, you are in a position of leading the execution of the strategy. To do so, you have to utilize the available teams or create new ones with specific strategic roles or capabilities.