What Skills Do You Need to Lead a Finance Team?

No two jobs are the same, and not everyone would prosper in each field; those who employ the decisiveness to thrive in investment banking here are the skills required?

What Skills Do You Need to Lead a Finance Team?

What Skills Do You Need to Lead a Finance Team?
What Skills Do You Need to Lead a Finance Team?
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If you are in a position where you are being asked to take on a financial management role, then congratulations: you have become one of the most important people in your organization. Managing a financial team is an incredibly important role – but also an incredibly demanding one.

Finance managers are well paid for a reason. They need to be able to multitask heroically in their role. What, then, are the skills that a finance team leader needs to possess? This article takes a closer look at some of them, and provides insight into the ins and outs of the role. 

The Ability to Adapt as Technology Changes

Pandia is a website dedicated to bringing you news of the best software and technology updates. As a reader of this website, you'll likely know just how quickly trends in business technology come and go. Finance managers are expected to keep up with changes in software and hardware business technology. Finance technology moves fast. New software is making financial management far more efficient than it ever has been. Modern financial management software streamlines invoicing, accounting, records and all sorts of other data. It has been a huge boost for managers looking to create cohesive and efficient financial management systems within their organizations.

Unfortunately, this means that if you don't move with the times, then you'll be left behind. Adaptability is the name of the game. The ability to stay on your toes and keep on the look out for new trends in technology is a really wonderful one to have as a financial manager. 

Great Interpersonal Management Skills

Leading any kind of team well takes great interpersonal management skills. Interpersonal skills are the behaviors and tactics a person uses in order to interact with others. It is a key element of any managerial role. Managing and understanding the people in a team is no easy feat. A finance team can be especially hard to manage because of the unique specialism that each team member will have. It is the finance manager's job to make sure that each element of the team understands the role of each other element as much as possible. Creating a cohesive and collaborative atmosphere during a project is essential work.

To manage a finance team you'll need to be a good listener, a good motivator and a compelling conflict negotiator. Be prepared to designate tasks fairly and swiftly, to facilitate interdepartmental communications and to discuss aims and values clearly with the people under your command. 

Accounting and Financial Acumen

At its very core, financial management is a numerical field. That is not to say that a financial manager is a full-time accountant. Instead, a finance manager must have a good knowledge of accountancy arithmetic in order to best compose strategic plans – not in order to actually do much accounting. Without accounting and financial acumen a finance manager is very unlikely to gain the trust of either the people working with them or the organization they are working for. Many senior accountants seek extra qualifications in order to move into the world of finance management.

Problem-Solving

Leading a finance team is never completely straight-forward. It is inevitable that you will come across some pretty daunting problems that need to be solved while on the job. Here are some of the most prevalent roadblocks that financial teams can face:

Data Silos

A data silo is a dataset stored in such a way that it is inaccessible across departments. This means that one person may be unaware of data collected by another and create duplicates or not incorporate them into their planning at all. In finance, data silos can be a real headache.

Lack of Visibility

Finance, as a specialist department, can often find itself cut off from the structure that holds up the rest of a business. This can cause misunderstandings and fracture the values and aims that a company works hard to abide by.

The Discovery of Bad Business Practice

Finance teams are often the people who are in the right position to spot irregularities within a business' actions. Financial managers need to find a way of righting wrongs and keeping everything above board when irregularities are spotted.

Problem-solving skills have to be learned. If you take part in an MSc Finance UK, you'll encounter all sorts of challenges designed specifically to test and improve your problem-solving abilities.

Evaluative Skills

Finance managers are valued for their evaluation of monetary data. Working for a business in a management role entails the close evaluation of claims and offers made by collaborators and competitors. Correctly evaluating these offers using demonstrable data and industry know-how is one of the tasks of a financial manager. If your evaluations are incorrect or hard to prove using data, then you will not be able to develop a reputation as a reliable senior finance professional.

Contractual Know-how

As senior members of the workforce and leaders of their own teams, finance managers are expected to have a good knowledge of professional contracting. Finance managers may be required to make deals and sign contracts on behalf of their organization. If a transaction between businesses goes wrong, then it could well be the financial manager's head that rolls come the end of the day. Understanding a little bit of contractual law and developing a rigorous attitude towards official documents is essential.

Leadership

Finance managers have to have the ability to take charge of a team and a situation. The financial team underneath a manager will undoubtedly come up against some tricky scenarios that take a great deal of coordination to get through. Leadership is essential – a competent manager should guide their team according to the vision put forward by their parent company or organization.

A good leader brings their team up with them, is a clear communicator, an inspiring speaker and an empath.

Everybody has worked in a job where there has been bad leadership. Poor leadership naturally breeds dissatisfaction and dreadful end results. 

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