Instructor for this course
more

In this course we look at getting started in a new CFO role.  Whether this is your first appointment as CFO or perhaps you are transitioning to a new CFO role at another organization, we look at different approaches for your first 100 days.  

We begin with a profile of the modern CFO, that is, what you need to bring to the organization.  From there, we look at team building principles and using proven tools to help you assess the existing finance function against best practices.  We use a strategic approach to developing an overarching mission and value statement for finance to bring context to specific action plans.  We look at structuring the finance function within the organization context to optimize and balance responsiveness to stakeholders with the need for control.  Finally, we look at change management principles to help you initiate your first major project.

Intro Video Transcript

Are you aspiring to the office of the CFO? Are you about to take on a new role as CFO, perhaps in your own organization or another? Or maybe you've been a CFO for a while and want to take a fresh look at your function or validate your approach. It's my hope to give you a glimpse into those first 100 days. My name is Blair Cook and I'm a three time CFO and continue serving in the capacity as a corporate director for a number of companies. I have experienced and observed these first 100 days several times already during my career. In this course, I'll share with you some of the successes, failures, and lessons learned.

In the courses I developed for live and online learning, my area of specialization is the path to and the role of the CFO. In this one hour course, we're going to cover a lot of ground at a level of depth that is hopefully both insightful and practical to your needs. Let me give you a brief preview of what's to come. In our first lesson, we're going to look at the competencies of the modern CFO. What does this role entail? What skills do you need? What value does the CFO bring to the organization? These are attributes that you need to develop leading up to and after your appointment. It's a very personal introspective view of ourselves.

In our second lesson, once you're appointed CFO, you will need to assess the situation. Some of you will be fortunate enough to inherit a well oiled machine though quite often, that's not the case. The finance function is always evolving. So even if it is serving the needs of the organization today, the CFO has to consider the future in making this overall assessment. We will look at a maturity model that you can use to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of your finance function.

In our third lesson, we will talk about building high performance finance teams that deliver results. We will look at a few team building principles. We will also look at an easy to use framework to specify the skills and competencies of the finance function. In our fourth lesson, let's talk about a strategic plan for the finance function. We will discuss how you can use strategic management principles to align your finance team with the objectives of the organization. I use mission and value statements along with an action plan to set up the right sorts of conversation with my staff.

In our fifth lesson, we will look at structuring the finance function. Every CFO is confronted with the age old dilemma of balancing off centralization and control with getting closer to the operational activity. We'll discuss some ideas and finally, let's talk about change management. Perhaps you need to transition the organization for new growth or new systems or new processes. These are no small undertakings. So understanding change management principles will prepare you before embarking on a major new project. I guarantee that knowing a few principles before you begin will save you the frustration and provide you guidance when you need it most.

This is a rather tall agenda to fill in just one hour but if you only have an hour to get briefed on what you've got yourself into, then this is the course that's designed to give you enough to formulate a game plan to get through your first 100 days. Leadership qualities aren't individual traits. There's more than one type of approach to leadership that can lead to a successful outcome. So I'm not naive enough to suggest that there's only one way to approach your first 100 days. In fact, in each of the CFO roles I've held, the context was different. My first day in a CFO role was in the context of a turnaround. My second was more of a cleanup and stewardship role. My third CFO role required me to build a finance team to meet the demands of public company reporting.

But the approach and the methods discussed in this course are broadly applicable, and I believe will spawn ideas for you to get started. In terms of an overall approach, I believe that you first build inward strength and then expand your sphere of influence outward from there. This means assessing our own personal competency as it stands today and where it needs to be to be a successful CFO. This sort of self-assessment gives us a list of areas for self-improvement. Gaps will also be supplemented by recruitment and development of your team.

As you're thinking broadens further, you'll consider the role of finance inside your organization. Which inevitably leads us to consider the role of finance in supporting the organization in a much broader marketplace which includes relationships with investors and analysts and lenders and customers and suppliers. While this may appear sequential, it really is not. Think of it more as a prioritization. I focus much of my first 100 days on ensuring that the inner layers are well developed and aligned before I start making promises and commitments to the outer layers. Click on the first lesson to begin your journey through the first 100 days as CFO.

 

Learning Objectives

  • Recognize the competencies of the modern CFO
  • Recognize the maturity level of the finance function
  • Identify strategies useful for developing strategic alignment within the finance function

101 Reviews (278 ratings)Reviews

4
Member's Profile
Very informative lesson. It took me several trials to get the questions right - will need to revisit certain slides of the presentation to master the topics. Any aspiring CFO and any one person working in an organization should take this webinar as they would benefit from it and would understand the thought process of a CFO..
4
Member's Profile
Very organized course. Obviously it is difficult to foresee all the challenges that a new CFO might find in his role, because they depend on the industry, culture, etc. I think the course can add something about measuring the culture, since a brilliant executive can fail because misreading the culture.
5
Member's Profile
While - as Blair even says - this course may be considered fairly high level, it's a great overview and very clearly and succinctly delivered. As a CFO myself, I found it a wonderful refresher/reminder on key things I need to be considering as I step into a new organization. Thanks, Blair!
5
Member's Profile
This course is very timely as I will be starting a senior level position soon. I plan on using the tools provided in this course to assist me as I develop my 100 day plan. I suggest everyone take this course. Even if you are in an existing position, the road map to success will help.
5
Member's Profile
Great course. Thanks for developing it It gives a clear picture of the main challenges and a few tools to deal with them. Even if in practice there will be much more to consider, with the main drivers in the back of your mind it helps for sure.
5
Member's Profile
I love the format of the learning opportunities on Proformative: it's perfect for a busy schedule. The content of this course in particular provides a great overview and reminder about the basics (if there is such a thing for CFO's).
5
Member's Profile
This course is excellent for any Finance leader joining a new organization or possibly even just going through an internal assessment within an existing organization. Provides a fine road map to building a world class finance team.
5
Anonymous Author
I have been searching this kind of course before, i mean locally. Glad I joined proformative and found this course online. This greatly helps in my chosen career path. Cant wait to apply my learnings. Thank you
3
Anonymous Author
It was generally informative but I thought a lot of it was too general and more of a pep talk than information. It seemed more suited for someone who "wanted" to be a CFO than one who was having to do the job.
5
Member's Profile
This course provides focus on what is important in the CFO role and its relationship to the finance department and organization. I liked the examples, and models to use as starting points.
5
Anonymous Author
This is a good course with good insight. The principles discussed are applicable throughout one's career. The content are good material for refresher as one matures in the role of CFO.
5
Member's Profile
I think this material is a great support for either first-time CFOs or for CFOs that somehow failed in a previous role, by not tackling strategically the first days of their journey.
5
Anonymous Author
So many common sense approaches and expectations and often, so few fulfilled in real situations. Concepts apply to any situation that requires evaluation and effective change.
5
Member's Profile
Excellent, packaged up presentation on strategic and tactical items to tackle the first 100 days. Great tips on how to prioritize knowing it's impossible to tackle everything.
4
Anonymous Author
I find this course very informative. It gives you tips and advice on how to act and behave as a CFO. The instructor clearly explains all points and gives relevant examples.
5
Member's Profile
I'm becoming a big fan of Blair Cook! Interesting, specific, relevant information for CFOs or other financial leaders in business presented in an engaging manner. Well done!
5
Member's Profile
If I could have given 6 stars, it mightn't have been enough. He provided a very practical roadway to finance excellence. Great enthusiastic and knowledgeable presenter.
4
Anonymous Author
Appreciate the models that really shape thinking. Many of the concepts are things one may know, but finding a framework to put those thought into is quite good.
5
Anonymous Author
Blair Cook never fails to deliver! Another nice overview of the topic at hand. The Change Management aspect is a nice summary for any manager facing changes.
Member's Profile
This was an excellent high-level course that level-sets a new CFO. It keeps the eye on the big picture. I highly recommend it to all new and even old CFOs!
5
Anonymous Author
Mr. Cook gives a great presentation. His materials are always useful and something I can look back upon as necessary. He always keeps my interest.
5
Member's Profile
I really liked how energetic the presenter was. It held my interest. Thought the slides were good and the additional verbal commentary was valuable.
5
Member's Profile
This course is so rich and inspiring. i have learnt a lot and it has open my mind to many things. i have no choice but to connect to Cook for more.
5
Member's Profile
Loads of great information and useful models that you can apply in virtually any company. Very practical and really like the model frameworks.
5
Member's Profile
Great course! Professor Cook demonstrates his experience and knowledge showing lot of useful information regarding to CFO daily problems.
5
Member's Profile
This is a great course to have going into a CFO assignment. I wish I had this at my fingertips when I went into my first CFO position.
5
Member's Profile
I liked the formal structure of the process - one which can be applied to any specific situation to achieve the desired results
5
Member's Profile
Mr. Cook has some practical advice to grading employees and helping to break down vision for both the CFO and his/her staff.
4
Member's Profile
Clearly hits the point, will be agood roadmap particularly for NEW CFOs or a CFO determined to redefine his functional area.
3
Anonymous Author
Some of the content did not apply to all CFO functions. Too much repetition of examples and sometimes talked too fast.
5
Anonymous Author
A very comprehensive summary of the challenges and opportunities facing a new CFO irrespective of experience level.
4
Member's Profile
A very good summary of what's important as a CFO gets started at a new company for any point in his or her career.
5
Member's Profile
Great Overview ...not just applicable to the first 100 days but a very sustainable approach to sucess as a CFO
4
Anonymous Author
I found the content really informative and valuable -- presentation style sometimes felt like an infomercial.
4
Member's Profile
Very good. I would like to hear more about how to best to interact with other members of the Executive Team.
5
Member's Profile
Some very good information to get started with, but it left me hungry for more guidance to implement.
5
Member's Profile
Great presenter. easy to listen to. great slides...I will definitely refer to these in the future.
5
Member's Profile
Blair clearly has an abundance of practical experience and provides insights that are highly useful.
5
Member's Profile
Great job breaking down the complexities of the position and providing a road map to success.
5
Member's Profile
Excellent presenter, very informative and motivating for me in progressing my career.
5
Anonymous Author
This course gave the big picture of a successful CFO. It was wonderfully succinct.
4
Anonymous Author
There was a lot of information, but it was kept concise. It was well put together.
3
Anonymous Author
Good Primer - High level overview, would need more specific plans to implement
3
Member's Profile
Good broad set of skills and competencies. I wish the course was more specific.
5
Member's Profile
Good diagrams and tools to access the Finance function and to initiate change.
4
Member's Profile
Very good insight into first things a new CFO to an organization should focus.
4
Anonymous Author
Good course; provides valuable insight into growing your finance department.
5
Member's Profile
awesome course. Look forward to taking more courses from this instructor
5
Anonymous Author
This course has a great outline to perform in your 1st 100days as a CFO.
4
Member's Profile
Great outline / map for starting a new role in any position I believe.
5
Member's Profile
Covered a lot of ground - very useful in figuring out where to start
5
Member's Profile
Blair is an amazing presenter. The material is awesome. Loved it.
5
Member's Profile
Excellent roadmap to improvement with very good tools to utilize.
5
Anonymous Author
Very good class letting me learn about what a CFO does at work.
5
Member's Profile
The practical steps and practical examples were very helpful.
5
Anonymous Author
Very informative and the style keeps the viewers attention.
4
Anonymous Author
Well known principles, but the supporting detail is great.
5
Anonymous Author
Good overview with a lot of material for a 1 hour course.
5
Anonymous Author
Another great course with relevant tools and information
5
Anonymous Author
Very helpful guide as you step into a new CFO role.
5
Anonymous Author
Great course that provides applicable information.
5
Anonymous Author
Very useful and applicable for everyday of a CFO
4
Member's Profile
Very easy to follow, with good actionable steps.
5
Anonymous Author
Very informative. Put things into perspective.
5
Anonymous Author
Enjoyed the course and was very informative.
5
Anonymous Author
Provided great perspective for the non-CFO.
4
Member's Profile
Thank you very much for your useful topics.
4
Anonymous Author
Information was relevant and insightful.
4
Member's Profile
Aspiring CFO's will gain a lot from course
4
Member's Profile
Have listen to him before--great presentor
4
Anonymous Author
Solid advice and good value add tools.
5
Member's Profile
Very useful and insightful course.
5
Member's Profile
Great presentation and graphics!
5
Member's Profile
Great energy and good material!
3
Member's Profile
Good high level information.
5
Anonymous Author
Great info quickly, thanks!
4
Anonymous Author
A ton of great information
4
Anonymous Author
Great practical insights.
5
Anonymous Author
Very useful information.
4
Member's Profile
Good for building a team
4
Member's Profile
He is very passionate!
5
Anonymous Author
Easy to listen to.
5
Anonymous Author
great information
4
Anonymous Author
Good presentation
4
Anonymous Author
Well explained.
5
Member's Profile
101 Things to do
5
Member's Profile
Great course!
4
Member's Profile
Good overview
4
Member's Profile
Great course!
4
Member's Profile
Good overview
4
Anonymous Author
very helpful
5
Member's Profile
great course
5
Member's Profile
Very helpful
5
Anonymous Author
great course
5
Anonymous Author
Excellent!!
5
Member's Profile
Interesting
5
Member's Profile
Excellent.
Anonymous Author
good ideas
4
Member's Profile
great!
5
Anonymous Author
m
Anonymous Author
4

Prerequisites

Course Complexity: Intermediate

Prerequisite: Finance leadership experience

 

Advanced Preparation: None

 

Education Provider Information

Company:
Illumeo, Inc., 75 East Santa Clara St., Suite 1215, San Jose, CA 95113
Contact:
For more information regarding this course, including complaint and cancellation policies, please contact our offices at (408) 400- 3993 or send an e-mail to .
Course Syllabus
INTRODUCTION AND OVERVIEW
Your First 100 Days as CFO
  13:14Competencies of the Modern CFO
  11:30Survey the Situation
  13:17Building a Finance Team
  9:45Strategy Management Principles
  6:56Finance Organizational Structure and Design
  12:16Change Management Principles
Continuous Play
  1:12:07Your First 100 Days as CFO
SUPPORTING MATERIALS
  PDFSlides: Your First 100 Days as CFO
  PDFYour First 100 Days as CFO Glossary/Index
  xlsFinance Function Competency Map
REVIEW & TEST
  quizREVIEW QUESTIONS
 examFINAL EXAM