Variations in management styles have existed for as long as there has been business. Relationships between managers and their employees can directly affect production, productivity, morale, and bottom line. Experience, upbringing, education, or culture can determine the management style of those placed in positions of power.
With labor markets still tight and people expressing a widespread desire to no longer work, a people-centred approach or “people first” attitude is needed. This is a culture change that executives can implement overnight to improve executive and employee morale.
most important asset
Aside from capital, infrastructure, raw materials, etc., people are one of the most important assets of a financial officer. The idea that people are a company’s strongest asset, a concept often discussed at last month’s MIT Sloan CFO Summit, is beginning to be built into the corporate fabric of many industries.
Nintex CFO Eric Emans approaches his position from a unique perspective. In addition to being a veteran of his CFO, Emans has a background in sociology and approaches his position with a broad understanding of how people interact. He believes CFOs should think more about the people they manage on their teams, not the numbers.
Emans said: “It is always possible to connect and relate as humans, regardless of other work differences. People are at their best when they have a clear vision of how their work fits into the big picture. I believe it will deliver a performance of
As a leader, Emans sees it as his job to connect the company’s employees to important goals and create opportunities. “I regularly schedule skip-level meetings to build direct relationships with more organizations,” he said. “I set expectations and give independence so that everyone can do their best work.”
Emans talked about how new executives can change the dynamics with a human-centric style of management. Especially if the newly inherited team previously had a less people-focused manager. When asked about how executives introduce new management styles, CFOs shared their thoughts on fear-based leadership tactics.
“I don’t believe in fear-based management. It doesn’t make sense to me.” .”
He continues: If the team loses, the leadership owns the loss. Employees know they are respected and deserve the benefit of the doubt as a person and as a fellow professional. ”
Skepticism and open communication
A human-centered approach to corporate decision-making by executives provides an excellent foundation for decision-making. After a career as CFO, her CEO of FP&A software provider Cube, her Christina Ross, shared her thoughts on the value of skepticism and open communication within companies. These strategies help companies avoid groupthink, but they are also a big part of corporate culture.
“Scepticism has always been a hallmark of a good CFO because he or she is responsible for assessing risk and revenue impact,” says Ross. “The best companies create a healthy tension between optimists and skeptics. [and] Today, the next generation of CFOs combine healthy skepticism with healthy optimism. They collaborate with organizations to create the art of what is possible. ”
According to Ross, honest communication within the organization is paramount. Following recent tech layoffs, Ross recently took time to discuss changes in the labor market with Cube employees.
“We recognized people’s concerns as we developed a strategy for how Cube would thrive and thrive in this environment by helping businesses navigate through this difficult time,” Ross said. said. A group of humans who build products and services for other humans. ”
“Our ability to empathize with each other, our customers, and our company is critical to our success,” she said.
Emphasis on learning
Some companies have strategies around learning and development and are seeing big benefits from that approach. Aglika Dotcheva, her CFO of Riskified, an e-commerce risk management platform, explains how employee development has helped her company ensure a healthy culture and workforce at the same time. shared their thoughts on how
“’Always learning’ is one of our core operating principles,” says Dotcheva. “As e-commerce evolves, so does fraud and abuse. So continuous learning and growth is something we value and emphasize with our employees every day.”
Dotcheva allocates resources directly to employee progress through the implementation of internal learning and development teams. Through webinars, workshops, and other events, Riskified is all company-provided and encourages employees to develop their skills.
“We encourage our employees to work with their teams on projects outside their traditional skill sets,” says Dotcheva. “That’s why we, as a company, are constantly learning from our customers. Through these learnings, we continue to update and strengthen our knowledge base on the threats facing e-commerce.”
Dotcheva emphasized that this approach to employee development allowed the company to be built from the inside. According to the CFO, his 27% of at-risk employees are climbing the internal ladder in his 2022.