The Strategy Table

By Tyler Garrett, executive assistant to Randy Russon, founder of TOP CFOS

If there’s anything we love to do, it’s sitting at your firm’s strategy table. In the world of business, nothing is more exciting than this. We love hearing great people share great ideas. Some of the world’s greatest innovations have come from the collaborative efforts of gifted people! Sometimes all it takes is one good idea to change the world.

One topic we never tire of while sitting at the strategy table is finding ways to outmaneuver your competition. We study your competitors to see what they’re doing and how they’re doing it. We go to their websites: How do they look? What kind of content do they have? We study your competitors’ offerings to see if you can do it better. We help you strive to be on the forefront of your industry.

A point to keep in mind when sitting at the strategy table is to make sure your strategy is in harmony with your mission statement. Your mission statement gives a clear vision of where your firm is headed. You should also let your financials be your guide as you plan great strategies. Therefore, a key player at your strategy table should always be a CFO. A great CFO will give you insights about the future that no one else can. In other words, is the strategy you’re about to embark on financially healthy?

A recent example of planning great business strategies is IBM. Under the leadership of CFO Mark Loughridge (2004–2013), IBM made over 100 acquisitions. Can you believe this? This was a phenomenal undertaking that represented almost one acquisition per month! This resulted in a fourfold increase in earnings during this ten-year period for IBM’s stockholders. Although Mark was the catalyst behind IBM’s soaring profits, it required a very bright, synergistic team to make this happen. Credit should also be given to Samuel J. Palmisano, who served as IBM’s CEO during this time.

In the spring of 2013, Chicago Booth Magazine wrote an article about Mark’s being at the forefront of IBM’s incredible turnaround. They said: “The modern CFO aims to run a top-performing finance operation and take a lead role in setting strategy. Mark Loughridge, ’82, who last year was named to the No. 1 spot in the Wall Street Journal‘s first-ever ranking of CFOs, does just that.” This shows the importance of what a good CFO can do for your firm. If you’ve yet to recruit a CFO to your team, or if you’re not satisfied with your current CFO services, feel free to reach out and we’d love to discuss our unique services with you.

We hope you’ve enjoyed our blog. Remember, TOP CFOS offers the finest CFO services to companies that want to take their businesses to the top. We love being the catalyst behind firms’ soaring profits, and we’d love to be a part of your team. Our contact info can be easily found on our website, so feel free to reach out anytime.

Our next post will come from the Business Operations category and is titled “Efficiency.” Thank you for joining us!

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