3 Critical Conversations to Have with A Fractional CFO or CAO

When you’ve worked with as many people as I have, you eventually see it all. And alongside the experience cred you gain, you get the wisdom of hindsight. Over the years of working with small businesses to plan their financial future and hit their growth goals, I have had clients make siloed decisions that I wish they could have avoided. Let me share a quick story that shows what I mean. 

A client of mine was stretched super thin. He was wearing lots of hats in his business, and business was good! That meant growth and continuous increase or exchange of the hats on his head. The stack of hats was high and teetering precariously. To put it lightly, he was overwhelmed, and things were in real danger of toppling over. 

In desperation, shortly before the stack on his head came tumbling down, he contracted with a third-party human resources and admin provider, with a hefty price tag and term commitment to boot. But before he could shuck a single hat off his head and toss it back in the closet where it belonged, his hopes were dashed. It wasn’t that the third party resource wasn’t a good one, it was that she didn’t have the specific expertise my client needed. 

This didn’t solve his problem. And to make it worse, he didn’t realize that the services that were contracted he was already receiving from two other vendors.  He just didn’t know what to ask and when to ask for help. Double whammy. 

Why do I share this not-so-happy ending of a tale with you, dear reader? Because I wish for you to avoid a similar fate. 

Hindsight is 20/20; we all know that. But when things like this happen, I just wish I could rewind time a little bit and save my client the hassle, expense, and headache of seeking outside help when he already had that help in me. 

It seems people don’t really get what we do, and it’s high time we clear that up. So, this piece is all about helping business owners know, once and for all, what a Fractional CFO or Chief Anticipation Officer (CAO) can (and can’t!) do for your business.

As your Fractional CFO or CAO, I can’t promise you a fairy tale, but I can promise you that if we keep the conversation going, we can create the story arc you envision for your business. 

3 Surprising Things Your Fractional CFO or Chief Anticipation Officer (CAO) Can Do

  1. Your Fractional CFO or Chief Anticipation Officer can’t predict the future fortune-teller style, but they can anticipate cash flow problems coming around the corner. 
  2. Your Fractional CFO or CAO can’t remove obstacles with Stranger Things’ Eleven-level telekinesis. Still, they can identify what those obstacles are and strategize ways to get around them.
  3. Your Fractional CFO or CAO can’t read minds, but they can act as a liaison with your bankers, insurance brokers, legal team, and HR, putting you and your business’s interests forward. 

But here’s the thing: at KBS CFO, we can’t do any of these things for you and your business if we don’t keep the lines of communication wide open.

To that end, let’s discuss a set of critical conversations that we should be having together to keep your bases covered without engaging the services of partners you don’t actually need in your business. Ready for the conversation? Contact us to schedule a discussion.

3 Critical Conversations to Have with your Fractional CFO or CAO

  1. Talk to your Fractional CFO or Chief Anticipation Officer before you sign a contract with a vendor of any kind. She will know how to perform the appropriate due diligence and can identify potential pitfalls or overlaps in service offerings. 
  2. Talk to your Fractional CFO or CAO about your hopes and dreams for your business. No, we don’t have to wax philosophical. Still, if you want to grow (or shrink!) your operations, make changes to your service or product offerings, enter a new market, or make any other moves that will impact your revenues and expenses, we need to talk about it before you start making changes.  
  3. Talk to your Fractional CFO or CAO before you hire a virtual team. Now more than ever, the hiring, contracting, training, and managing of a team come with challenges that many business owners are unfamiliar with. Communication, in particular, is a crucial component of working with a virtual team. SIDE NOTE: I talk all about this in an interview on the Journal of Accountancy podcast and will cover this topic thoroughly in an upcoming blog post…so stay tuned! 

There are so many things a Fractional CFO or Chief Anticipatory Officer (CAO) can do for your business. The work KBS CFO does with our clients goes way beyond overseeing your accounting functions and producing financial reports.  We are a strategic partner that wants to help carry your business into the future, whatever that looks like for you. So get the forward-thinking support you need with KBS CFO. Contact us today