Being an effective finance manager is like being a game-winning quarterback. Success shines a disproportionate amount of light on your shoulders, as does failure.
And like a quarterback, a good manager understands the strengths and weaknesses of each member of their team and uses their skills accordingly. Effective finance managers build relationships and engender trust, while celebrating successes and learning from challenges.
The best have these traits and work hard to constantly develop them.
Strong analytical skills
A finance manager needs to have excellent analytical skills to understand complex financial data, analyze financial statements, and make informed decisions. They should be able to identify trends, patterns, and anomalies in financial data, and use this information to create financial forecasts, identify potential risks, and evaluate investment opportunities.
Attention to detail
A finance manager should possess a high level of attention to detail to ensure that financial data is accurate and complete. A small error in financial data can lead to significant consequences and have a negative impact on a company’s financial performance. Therefore, a finance manager should be meticulous in their work, double-checking all financial data, and ensuring that all calculations are correct.
Strong communication skills
A finance manager should possess excellent communication skills to explain complex financial data to non-financial stakeholders, such as senior executives or investors. They should be able to present financial information in a clear and concise manner, using visuals or other aids to help stakeholders understand the data. Strong communication skills also enable finance managers to build strong relationships with key stakeholders and work effectively with cross-functional teams.
A great finance manager understands how to position each person for success by capitalizing on his or her strengths. By tailoring each person’s deliverables to their skill set and abilities, a strong finance manager creates buy-in to an organization’s vision. Fundamentally, the foundation of their management style is the belief that a productive, unified team is the cornerstone of any successful organization.
Effective finance managers build strong, cross-functional business relationships. They establish a culture of accessibility and manage from a posture of service. They have an innate ability to understand each person’s individual drivers and work with them. Whether it’s with their team, senior management or external partners, great finance managers build great relationships.
Exceptional finance managers model behaviours they want to see in their team. Whether it’s accuracy, time management or initiative, an effective manager models the traits that lead to success. They establish a culture of continuous improvement and they support their team when a mistake is made. Each day, they push themselves to be better.
Great finance managers understand the importance of building real relationships, modelling successful behaviours and capitalizing on their team member’s individual strengths. By doing so, they create an environment of support and ensure that their team believes in their leadership and the goals of the organization – a winning combination.
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