#054: Walking the Shop Floor to Become a Trusted Finance Professional

with Robin Kiziak

Our Guest Mentor:

Robin Kiziak is a Finance Manager at Wickes and previously a long-time finance professional at DHL. Robin shares with us his experiences of challenging his introverted nature to go out and walk the shop floor to build new relationship and make an impact in terms of his own effectiveness but also for his business partners.

Robin is currently based out of Northampton in the United Kingdom.

Key Quotes From the Episode:

“[On How Email Previously Held Robin Back] |I was one of these typical finance people, if there is such a thing, very introverted, quite happy to sit in my office and happy to be told this is what I’m doing, these are the reports, distribute them, as I’ve been helped by email because email is a way of having to get out of having to talk to people and that’s what I found in the start of my career, I could email reports off and would never have to speak to anyone it was brilliant. ” [03:58]

 “[On where he made the biggest development leap] |I decided to push myself outside my comfort zone and get to know people, and build relationships straight away rather than before where I used to sit in the background and wait until I was needed.” [05:09]

“[On the importance of budgeting] What I did find is that budgeting gave me the reason to ask difficult questions, to understand the business as a whole which really helped because I could then get into start building these relationships with people.” [08:02]

“[On the real point of budgeting] We may manage the budget process but we don’t own that budget, someone else needs to deliver that budget so they need to be bought into it and have as much involvement with it as we do.” [08:38]

“[On what business partnering involves] It is getting out there, speaking to people, understanding how the business works, and then simplifying it and you’re able to speak to people in a language they’re able to understand.” [18:03]

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Key Points From the Episode:

  • How to practically develop the confidence to build relationships, particularly where we’ve not been used to doing this before.
  • How we can do some simple things to scale our impact.
  • A story on how to improve the perception other teams might have of finance.

Time Stamped Show Notes:

[02:00] – Robin’s journey and how he developed variety in his experiences.

[03:51] – The key skill that Robin feels is the most important to develop now.

[04:22] – The hidden challenge with email.

[04:48] – Advice how to practically develop confidence in building relationships.

[06:46] – Shares 3 relationship building steps.

[07:13] – Why Collaboration is a big word at the moment.

[07:49] – What’s exciting him most about what he’s currently doing.

[09:37] – How Robin uses weekly meetings to scale his impact.

[12:12] – How Robin changed the perception operations had of Finance being sat in their “golden towers”.

[14:20] – Why it’s important to challenge your business partners and how we can help that process.

[15:34] – Robin shares some useful sayings/advice and how they’re relevant to finance.

[17:14] – Useful resources and people Robin recommends to follow on LinkedIn.

Resources Mentioned:

  • To read: Is Business Partnering A New Trend, LinkedIn 2017, by Phil Spall (article)
  • To read: To create value you must walk the shop floor, LinkedIn 2018, by Anders Liu Lindberg and Robin Kiziak (article)
  • To view: Wyn Hopkins at Access Analytic (website)
  • To view: Alan Walker at Chat Talent (website)
  • To follow: Phil Spall (LinkedIn Profile)
  • To follow: Andrew Codd (LinkedIn Profile)
  • To follow: Anders Liu-Lindberg (LinkedIn Profile)
  • To watch: Is Excel Dead? Debate (YouTube)
  • To listen: Is Excel Dead? Debate (Podcast)

Connect with today’s guest:

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