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Career Story: Chief Financial Officer Of A Small Business

Chief Financial Officer Of A Small Business

Job Title: Chief Financial Officer Of Small Business

Education: BA in Accounting/Economics, Holy Cross

Previous Experience: I worked in public accounting in one of the then Big 8 accounting firms in the Small Business Department for four years before I moved to the private sector. My first job in the private sector was as Director of Finance in a small software start-up.

Job Tasks: My company publishes newsletters and magazines in the alternative health care area.

I am in charge of the office operations, accounting department, budget and finance, investor relations, human resources and anything that comes up that does not fall into someone else's job.

I do not have a typical day. Each week we start with a staff meeting to discuss what needs to be accomplished that week. We send out a weekly update on sales, cash and other financial indicators which is reviewed by senior management. On a biweekly basis we will pay the bills. We make collection calls on a daily basis.

On a monthly basis we issue internal monthly financial statements to all of the department heads. They are reviewed by the department heads and the closing process begins. We review all variances from budget and then issue a monthly financial package to our investors and board of directors.

On an annual basis we will work with management to develop a budget for the year. The budget is approved by the Board of Directors and then is updated 2 or 3 times a year. We report against this budget on a monthly basis.

My department also reviews all personnel policies and annually will review benefits and get quotes on the benefits.

We also review all the communication equipment including computers and telephone equipment on a regular basis to determine replacement or other service requirements.

Every other month we will have a board of directors meeting which requires a presentation from management on sales, report on the financials and discussion of any other issues. I plan for this meeting with president and other senior members of management that are presenting at the meeting.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of my job is that it is never boring. I am involved is many different issues and projects with in the company. I am able to work with almost everyone in the company.

The worst part of my job is managing and predicting cash flow. Cash is always tight in a small company and many things can affect the budget and cash planning. It needs to be reviewed on a weekly if not daily basis.

Job Tips: Getting to know a company can often start with very boring tasks. Do these tasks well and you will eventually get more interesting tasks.

You will make many mistakes in the beginning of your career. Do not try to hide your mistakes rather learn from them and determine how they can be avoided in the next project.

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