Recently, Freedom Fibre's CFO, Darren Woods, joined Hannah Munro on the CFO 4.0 podcast to share his ambition for finance and the importance of understanding finance's hierarchy of needs.
In this podcast, Darren & Hannah discuss how finance's hierarchy of needs is similar to Maslow's hierarchy of needs (the famous psychological theory), but instead of focusing on basic human needs it focuses on the needs of a finance organisation. Understanding this hierarchy is essential for new CFOs to help them identify the most pressing needs of their finance organisation and prioritise their efforts accordingly.
Hannah and Darren emphasise the importance of understanding the problem you are trying to solve before you try to solve it. They discuss how new CFOs often come in with preconceived ideas about what needs to be fixed within the organisation, but they need to take the time to understand the root cause of the problem before implementing a solution. This involves talking to stakeholders, analysing data, and asking the right questions. Once the problem is clearly defined CFOs can then work on implementing a solution that addresses the root cause rather than just treating the symptoms.
Darren stresses the importance of taking the time to understand the three things that keep your CEO awake at night. By understanding the CEO's top concerns, CFOs can align their efforts with the CEO's priorities and demonstrate their value to the organisation. This requires building a strong relationship with the CEO and developing a deep understanding of the business and its strategic objectives.
Overall, the podcast provides valuable insights and advice for new to role and brand new CFOs.