How to Act Like a Finance Manager Before You are One

Before you can get promoted to the role of finance manager, the leadership of your organization needs to see you as being credible for the position.

And even if your advancement dreams don’t pan out with your current company, developing the traits that make managers successful leaders can only pay dividends in your future. Here’s how to act like a finance manager before you are one.

Leverage Your Strengths
Find ways to align your strengths to your company’s areas of need. Be solutions focused. Identify, for example, any processes in need of improvement and offer strategies to increase their efficiency. Your team will benefit, as will your reputation as being forward-thinking.

Posture of Service
Be humble and approach everything from a posture of service. Do favours for managers in other departments. Take accountability if things go sideways and support your fellow team members if they need it. Good managers model the behaviours they want to see in their staff. By demonstrating a genuine need to help others succeed, you position yourself as a natural choice for a leadership position.

Find a Mentor
Great leaders usually have someone who has mentored them. A mentor can accelerate your learning curve, add a balanced perspective in timely decisions and help grow your career.

Choose Your Priorities
Finance managers are walking a time demands tightrope –all day, every day. Show that you know how to prioritize. Deliver on expectations and demonstrate resilience in the face of obstacles. Managers are responsible not only for finding solutions, but also for prioritizing them according to their urgency, so show that you possess the same set of time management skills.

Be Professional
We know, it’s tempting to gossip with your co-workers. At the end of the day, however, a manager needs to demonstrate professionalism, so listen instead of participate, and if you can, quickly drop and roll from the conversation.

To act like a finance manager before you are one, leverage your strengths from a posture of service. Maintain your professional demeanor and show that you can prioritize competing demands. Prepare yourself for the challenges that await you in a leadership position so that when you get there you can be exceptional.

New Finance Manager's Survival Guide