Why Non-Finance Managers need to comprehend Finance…

As the India Budget 2018 goes live today, many of us will get glued to the television or mobile phone to view what’s being announced, planned, budgeted for and to interpret what it means for you as an Individual and/or for your business.

Likewise, it is very essential for Managers to understand their department’s / company’s financials and how to interpret these numbers to plan effectively and suggest / make sensible business decisions. For those with financial backgrounds, this might be routine or take little effort, but for managers from non-financial discipline, this can be very cumbersome and challenging which is why Finance for Non-Finance Managers is a must have.

To so many of us who play senior roles in the management of their company affairs, we might recollect how we would deep dive to collect numbers, scout for quotes and budget figures during younger days when we had to manage a project or propose a new solution to our Seniors, who would like figures in black & white. While young managers might naturally want to pursue higher levels of education in either management or certain other additional certifications they are keen on, they must pay heed to also hone their skills on understanding finance – the blood life of any organization, its role and what it conveys to business. Without this, no matter how great a manager you are, you will always be dependent on others for guiding your opinion and never have your own views. This makes a deficient manager and could probably work against the career growth aspirations all young managers have.

How often have you been asked to submit a plan? Or perhaps optimize manpower strength in your team? Forecast sales for the next quarter? Budget your units expenses for the coming year? In doing the above, have you been constructively quizzed by your Seniors, especially the Finance Director, CFO or Head – Finance besides your own Boss? Have there been occasions when your presentation gets sidelined completely to deal with new financial findings that came up during the discussion and your entire presentation needed rework? If your answers to many of the above questions are affirmative, then it is time for you to skill up your financial knowledge so that you can confidently plan and propose ideas, solutions and share confident observations with your management.

Companies too realize the need of having financial acumen in their non-finance managers so that they are assured of stronger and objective based planning, evaluation, implementation and monitoring by their managers who are responsible for driving operations in their respective functional areas.

For those of you wanting to scale the career ladder fast, skill up on your financial know-how so that you are able to understand what financial figures convey, so that you can participate meaningfully in discussions with senior management and can influence or take effective business decisions. With this prowess, besides creating an impression on the Senior Management, you will also build credibility and faith in their eyes.

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