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You might have a sports coach, but what about a CFO coach?

November 19th, 2008

With such a high level of uncertainty in the job markets I’m always keen to see what additional efforts I can take to sharpen my skillset, add more value to my current company, or expand my network. I learned a very hard lesson after my position was eliminated last year and found myself at a virtual ground zero with regards to contact data, my networking abilities, & the resources to conduct an effective job search. I discovered had to make new connections quick , and through these contacts, discovered new tools such as LinkedIn, Financial Executives International (FEI), and Financial Executives Networking Group (FENG). I also created this blog in Q1-08. It’s been a challenging year but I look back and I’m very pleased with the progress I have made.

Lately, I have been watching the Twitter postings and reading the blog entries of Cindy Kraft, who is more commonly known as the CFO Coach to her followers. I had a call with Cindy yesterday to discuss her services and what a client could expect from her should the decision be made to pursue a program. As I expected, and Cindy confirmed, we are not talking about a 4-week or 8-week program, but a longer term initiative that would be developed by both client and coach. Her approach is one of collaboration where the goals are continually reviewed and adjusted to accommodate any change in dynamics.

I spoke with Cindy about what the average candidate profile is and she mentioned that the average client is currently employed and they are looking to increase their professional skillset, both in and out of the office. She also mentioned that client engagements can range between an hourly rate and a monthly rate. With regards to her monthly rate, the expectation is that there is a weekly call that happens to ensure progress is being made on existing issues and to see if there are any new topics that need to be tabled and incorporated within the longer term plan.

For a group that is typically numbers-centric and not so high on the interpersonal skills, Cindy is one of those folks that can turn into a CFO’s best friend. When it comes to refining skillsets that will be used daily in the office, it’s a small price to pay to avoid morale issues or negative circumstance resulting from a situation that can easily be changed. For myself, it’s one of those steps that I’m strategizing to make sure that when I start I can capture the expected value and make the long-term commitment.

Thanks for reading . . . .

Jeffrey Ishmael

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