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FY360° | Bringing a healthy dose of pragmatism to strategy


Two experienced senior finance executives discuss their changing roles.



It’s been some time since the core role of a company’s chief of finance was to be its chief accountant and controller. Fallout from the 2008 financial crisis, the pace of technological change, and the shift of global economic activity from developed to emerging markets have continued to add to the CFO’s responsibilities—and have confirmed the executive’s role as a business partner who is very much involved in the strategic direction of a company.

McKinsey’s Martin Hirt explored some of the practical implications for finance chiefs with Iain Mackay, group finance director for HSBC, and Marina Wyatt, CFO of Dutch location- and navigation-services company TomTom, at McKinsey’s annual CFO Forum in London in June. The two agreed on a role for CFOs that brings the insights of finance to bear on strategy—communicating value and pressuring all those involved in strategy to define their vision with respect to value creation.

McKinsey: One board member I know described the change in the CFO’s role by saying, “The chief financial officer today is expected to be a little more chief and a little less financial.” How do you balance a broader, more strategic role with the one as lead controller?

More:
www.mckinsey.com/insights/corporate_finance/bringing_a_healthy_dose_of_pragmatism_to_strategy


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