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How Can We Deal with Misleading Management Accounting Data?

By Gary CokinsFounder and CEO: Analytics-Based Performance Management LLC

A paradox which continues to puzzle me is how chief financial officers (CFOs) and controllers can be aware that their managerial accounting data is flawed and misleading, yet not take action to do anything about it.

Now, I’m not referring to the financial accounting data used for external reporting; that information passes strict audits. I’m referring to the managerial accounting used internally for analysis and decisions.

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Are You an Ethical Numbers Presenter?

Randall Bolten , longtime Silicon Valley CFO, author of "Painting with Numbers: Presenting Financials and Other Numbers So People Will Understand You” and adjunct professor at U.C. Berkeley Extension

In recent posts we’ve seen how tiny changes in the way we present numbers can have a huge impact on how well the information is understood. In this post, we look instead at how those little things can affect how your integrity or your ethics might be perceived

For our example, consider a slide from an investor presentation I found online (click here for the original document). Just for the record, the company (Constant Contact – Nasdaq: CTCT) looks at first glance like a perfectly fine company; I’m only commenting on how they present some of their information.

RANDALL BOLTEN grew up in Washington, D.C., the son of a CIA intelligence officer and a history professor. He is passionate about the importance of presenting financials and other numerical information in a cogent and effective way, and in his current life is the author of Painting with Numbers: Presenting Financials and Other Numbers So People Will Understand You (John Wiley & Sons, 2012).

He is a seasoned financial executive, with many years directing the financial and other operations of high-technology companies. His experience includes nearly twenty years as a chief financial officer of software companies.

He has held the CFO position at public companies BroadVision and Phoenix Technologies, and at private companies including Arcot Systems, BioCAD, and Teknekron. Before his CFO positions, he held senior financial management positions at Oracle and Tandem Computers.

He received his AB from Princeton University, headed west to earn an MBA at Stanford University, and ended up staying in Silicon Valley. 

In addition to writing Painting with Numbers, he currently operates Lucidity, a consulting and executive coaching practice focused on organizing and presenting complex financial information. He divides his work time between Glenbrook, NV and Washington, DC, and maintains an office in Menlo Park, CA.

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FP&A Value Cycle – Data Leadership Strategy

By James Myers, Global Finance Executive and FInance Transformation Consultant

Never before has an FP&A professional had so much opportunity to change the course of history.  Uncertainty is becoming the norm and companies are struggling to be nimble or have become too dependent on the past to create the future and find it difficult to adapt to change. While “disruption”, the latest buzz word, we are seeing the more nimble companies winning, but by definition there also have to be losers.  How does your company navigate these uncertain times? 

James Myers is the founder and CEO of FP&A Strategy Consulting, helping to accelerate finance transformation resulting in smarter organizations that focus their talent on issues that matter.

James is a thought leader in FP&A and has presented at many Finance summits.  He has also held various finance and operations leadership roles in multinationals such as Dell and Nokia and has clients such as Hewlett Packard Enterprise.  James holds advanced degrees in finance and accounting and is a qualified Chartered Accountant.  In his spare time he is also a Co-Program lead for the Silicon Valley Startup Leadership Program and runs the Silicon Valley Power BI User Group.

LinkedInwww.linkedin.com/in/jamesmyersw

 

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Key Performance Indicators - A CFO's Perspective

By Adam Jernigan, Founder - Financials OnTap

"You can't improve what you don't measure" - Lord Kelvin

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are metrics that represent how various drivers of the business are performing. These drivers are often both financial and operational in nature. And while there is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to choosing the "right" metrics for your business it is critical that the data used be consistent and accurate.

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The 11 Commandments of Supreme Forecasting

By Timo Wienefoet, Managing Partner at IMPLEXA GmbH

The Superforecasters were assessed according to Brier scores. A certain mindset combined with a resolute feedback environment led to extraordinary results. Philip Tetlock, author of "Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction", came up with 11 methodical commandments that can be followed to attain  supreme forecasting skills.

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