When your company is in a position to hire a chief financial officer, whether it's for the first time or to replace a departing executive, there is often a lot at stake. For that reason, you need to be absolutely sure you've made the right hire and have fully assessed every candidate's readiness to step into the role.
While there are many things to consider when it comes to potential hires for any C-suite job, these are some of the most important for the CFO role, in particular:
You always need a firm hand on the wheel of your organization's financial health, and whoever you put in charge needs to be able to recognize potential problems well in advance, according to Deloitte. When a candidate can demonstrate a history of identifying financial risk and course-correcting successfully, that's the kind of person you should be looking for.
2) Communication skills
As with anyone in the C-suite, a CFO needs to be able to clearly communicate ideas and directives to other executives and their teams on an ongoing basis, Deloitte added. Even a slight miscommunication or lack of clarity can lead to logjams and problems, so these skills are a must-have.
3) A highly strategic mind
In any industry, executives often have to be able to envision a better future for the company as well as how they will get your business there as quickly and effectively as possible, according to Inc. Being able to see the chessboard of business three moves ahead is an absolute requirement for this job.
4) Experience in both finance and the specific industry
When you talk to a number of candidates, they will have varying levels of experience in finance and your specific field, Inc. said. Perhaps unexpectedly, the general consensus among hiring experts is that finance experience is more important to prioritize than being in the industry for a long time, simply because a lot more of the basics transfer over regardless of sector, but it's hard to trump handling the ins and outs of managing any company's bottom line.
5) Ability to build a strong team
Akin to good communication skills is the ability to work well with a team and, more importantly, make sure it's always in a position to succeed, according to ProcureDesk. That means not only fostering relationships with all employees under the financial umbrella, but also being able to identify talent on their own, and cultivating it.
Of course, these are just some of the qualities you should be looking for when you're hiring a CFO. When you're on the lookout for someone to fill that position, you may need help to truly whittle down a handful of great choices to the best possible candidate. To see some of the roles that we have already successfully placed, click here.
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