How to Build a Finance Dream Team

How to build an all-star finance team.

The years 1983 to 1990 will forever be enshrined in the mind of every Edmonton Oilers’ fan. They were the dynasty years, when the team ruled the ice and won 5 Stanley Cups.  They illustrate what can happen when a team is in sync, and has great leadership at the helm.

So the question is – how do you build a finance dream team that can help your organization achieve its “Stanley Cup?” 

The Vision
It all starts by defining the vision. As a finance leader carefully build your vision of the finance function. Tap other sources of information to inform your thinking, including line of business leaders. Get insight into how finance can act as a business partner. Establish a direction based on this feedback and then set priorities.

Evaluate the Team
One of the most important steps in the process is to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of your team. Is each individual being used to best effect? Are you leveraging their strengths and helping them develop strategies to mitigate their weaknesses? Meeting with team members one-on-one helps you to give and receive timely feedback that can help with the evaluation process. Setting milestones for each individual can fuel the motivation to succeed. 

Pro Tip: Consider, as well, creating a culture of learning. It will help the growth of your current team, but also serve as an attractive enticement to top performers who are typically committed to continuous improvement.

Needs Assessment
When you evaluated your team, you may have noted gaps that cannot be filled with existing members. In this case, you’ll need to hire. Evaluate what kind of talent and skills you need to achieve the vision. Meet with the stakeholders most impacted by the hiring decision and source their input as to what they feel is needed to succeed in the role. Consider company culture and soft skills such as relationship building and communication. Technical fit is only one piece of the puzzle. Above all else, don’t get caught up in trying to find the “perfect” candidate. 

Collaborative Communication
If you believe that leadership comes from within the team, and your communication style supports that belief, your team will buy-in. Ask for their input consistently. Develop a collaborative approach to solving problems. Stress accountability and at the same time be available if they need to check in. 

According to an article from Forbes, there are specific habits that highly collaborative organizations demonstrate, such as:

  • The leaders model collaboration
  • Employees are told how decisions will impact them individually
  • Companies consider why collaboration is important and what they hope to achieve from it, before implementing any substantial changes
  • Employees are encouraged to talk to everyone – the collaborative culture is not policed
  • Employees are part of the decision-making process and their ideas are integrated into a strategy
  • Collaboration should never be seen as something else to be done, but rather a natural part of workflow
  • Teamwork is rewarded

Read: To read the full article from Forbes click here.

Promote Internally
Sometimes you’ll need to hire externally because your team simply doesn’t have the skills or expertise necessary. But if possible try to promote from within. This sends a powerful message that hard work will be rewarded. The result: a team that is committed to helping achieve the company’s vision.

ReadHow to Tell if an Employee is Ready to Be a Finance Manager” to understand the signs that a team member is ready to make the leap to greater responsibility.

Key Takeaways
To build a finance dream team involves several key steps. Craft a vision for the team based on organizational goals and the role of the finance team as business partner. Assess your team and determine if you are using them to best effect. If there are any gaps that the existing team cannot fill, then be open to hiring. List the needs of the role based on feedback from stakeholders.  When speaking to your team be collaborative in your approach and encourage a culture of learning. Finally, promoting internally shows that hard work will be rewarded and increases the odds that your team will buy-in to your vision.

Your Next Step
No one should walk the job search or hiring road alone. At Clarity Recruitment we help others realize their success through a process that marries proprietary technology with unwavering commitment. Contact us today to take control of your career, or to partner with us to hire well.

Clarity Recruitment, connecting exceptional people with remarkable companies.