Kevin Durant is Awesome But Your CFO is the REAL MVP

Your wireless costs might increase because of COVID-19 – but they won’t if you follow these 3 steps.

kevin durant mvp speech & business(This post was originally published on LinkedIn June, 18 2014)

His team not making it to the finals notwithstanding, Kevin Durant had an amazing year. Yet, I can think of at least 2 people (outside the NBA) who deserve the award over him. The first, as everyone who saw his moving acceptance speech that went viral can attest, and Kevin’s personal choice to boot, is his Mom.

“You made us believe,” Durant said in his speech. “Kept us off the street. Put clothes on our backs, food on the table. When you didn’t eat, you made sure we ate. You went to sleep hungry. You sacrificed for us. You’re the real MVP.” Pretty powerful stuff! Cue Jackson Browne’s, Here Come those Tears Again.

Kind of puts the credentials of another famous sports Mom, Wilma McNabb, serving her son Chunky Soup in the locker room before the game, in perspective.

Back to Durant’s mom, the amazing Wanda Pratt. Who could possibly be better than that? Who in their right mind wouldn’t cast a vote for sweet, dear old Mom?

Certainly not me. But as I mentioned earlier, there are two worthy candidates for MVP.

Here are a just a few of the reasons why the CFO, YOUR CFO, is the real MVP.

Wingman To The CEO

It’s not as lonely at the top anymore. Why? More and more CFO’s are working alongside the CEO as a business partner. More than just providing the financial wherewithal to execute the strategy of the organization, the CFO helps to create and define the strategy. Plus, it is their responsibility to measure and monitor business performance relative to the strategy and goals of the organization.

She’s Houdini

Instead of deciding between increasing revenues or decreasing costs, the CFO knows it is not an either/or proposition. Cost cutting does not have to involve losing people or cutting programs. The inefficiencies in most organizations runs into the millions of dollars and the CFO knows how to find and fix them. The money “found” (recouped funds) from cutting costs is often repurposed to growth opportunities otherwise deemed cost-prohibitive. This often results in, Voilà, increased revenues.

The Great Communicator

To stakeholders, board members, the CEO, CIO, and down to his or her departments. The CFO must possess the ability to explain complex financial information in an easy to understand manner. An Ernst & Young survey of top CFO’s came to this conclusion: “Communications skills are an imperative, as CFOs must convey complex financial results and business performance to external stakeholders while championing specific initiatives internally.”

Choosing IT Solutions That Make Sense & Save Money

In a recent Longitude global study co-sponsored by Accenture and Oracle, The CFO was declared a Technology Evangelist – Modern CFOs and Finance Executives Are Adopting Emerging Technologies to Help Transform the Role of Finance. Accenture’s Scott Brennan, a managing Director, Accenture Strategy in Finance & Enterprise Performance had this to say: “CFOs today are creating modern finance organizations that are adopting the cloud and other disruptive technologies to realize the power that digital can wield and help propel the enterprise forward. This study shows how modern finance leaders can help craft corporate strategies that drive profitable growth.”

America’s Got Talent

Identifying, developing and nurturing talent is yet another key responsibility of the CFO. Yes, HR plays a role. But the CFO has a unique perspective on the skills and abilities needed to contribute to the current and future financial needs of the organization. The talent strategy developed by the CFO produces the financial leaders of the future. Accenture’s Brennan weighs in with this: “These new modern finance organizations will want to train and hire professionals with robust analytical skills and business knowledge to help today’s CFO realize the full potential that finance has to offer.”

Those were just 5 of the reasons your CFO is the real MVP.

But wait. There’s more!

Some of the other equally important challenges the CFO faces every day include healthcare costs, regulation compliance, managing cash flow, risk management and budgeting and expense control. When do these people sleep?

How do YOU spell MVP?

I spell it CFO.


[author_bio username=”Tom Reda”  name=”yes”]

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