What is the best career path to becoming a CFO?
I just want to get a sense of where people stand. Do most CFO's come over from the "Big 4" as auditors and transition to accounting? If not the "Big 4" do they at least have audit experience? Or are they career accountants working their way up the ladder? Please leave feedback. I am interested in people's chosen career paths.
- Ben Piccirillo, Accountant-Senior at Omgeo,
Ben - There are several ways to become a CFO, but working for a large (not necessarily Big 4, gives you the insight to the kinds of issues that CFOs face; at an earlier stage in your career than working for a company in an accounting or even finance role. You need to see accounting, treasury, budgeting and analysis, risk management, SEC and systems to become a controller these days, and from there you can learn about capital raising, corporate strategy and management skills. It will take 15-20 years to accomplish. Good luck.
- Geoffrey Holczer, Chief Financial Officer at Click R LLC,
Good question with no easy answer. Todays CFO is a business partner to the CEO. A focused auditor or accountant for that matter will not make the cut. The best advise I can give is to reach out to operations and strategy teams whenever possible at all points in your career.
I started my career as a cost accountant and moved up to a business line controller in preparation to my CFO role. I took calculated risks and positioned myself to take advantage of opportunities when presented.
- Tom Ruchalski, Chief Financial Officer at Skyline Windows,
- Doreen Kuster, Chief Financial Officer at N/A,
- Ted Clarkson, Chief Financial Officer at Hudson Pacific Capital Partners LLC,