#160: Find a Better Way To Finance Transformation & Innovation with Nevine White

with Nevine White

Our Guest Mentors:

Nevine White was an Executive in Residence at Live Future Ready / Beyond Budgeting Round Table North America. Her expertise in financial planning functions by providing reliable and useful information to decision-makers, reduce bureaucracy, and increase agility have been key focus areas and accomplishments throughout her 20+ years of working in FP&A.

Nevine longest tenure was in telecommunications and had the opportunity to work on a contract basis across several industries – including healthcare, logistics, and manufacturing. Each industry brings unique challenges and perspectives, many of the business problems stem from the same fundamental issues brought on by outdated constructs that are misaligned with today’s need to be able to respond to a quickly and constantly changing landscape. A strong leader with experience in setting up

processes, building and directing highly skilled financial management teams to support achievement of overall corporate goals and objectives.

Nevine was an Electronic Engineer by profession and holds an MBA in Marketing & Finance at Regis University Denver, Colorado. She volunteered to various schools and women’s organization.

Key Quotes From the Episode:

“[On traditional budgeting] It breeds bad behaviour. It’s a destructive process as people tend to be parochial during compensation negotiation and it gets personal.” [05:23]

“[When embarking on process transformation] you always don’t know what you always don’t know for it makes a lot of impact on the business.” [08:36]

“[Having a business niche of being responsive in providing quality and better services to customers] you can’t do that if you are stuck in an old paradigm that you can’t move. As being constantly hamstrung by these artificial construct that creates not only a ceiling but also a floor to your spending budget.” [09:26]

“We focus on the things we need to understand about the business so we started running a very routine of quarterly process of having people to project out only what they could see.” [10:54]

“[When doing the transformation] you need to talk to people. There’s a lot of training. A lot of hand holding and a lot of acknowledging that we don’t have the answers to many of the questions that may arise in the process because you don’t know everything you will break as you go through this significant process.”[11:53]

“[Finance being the advocate for transformation] as finance personnel being physically closer to the business operation and its customers, they were able to see first-hand the processes that breaks down and overly bureaucratic. They became advocates of change in the organization, helps them understand the situation and offer solutions for that.”[14:05]

“[On streamlining processes] letting good judgement and common sense prevails over process owner’s policy that extrapolates the ability of the organization to respond.”[15:32]

“[Of being an asset to the business] Finance people need to understand the business not by being transportable, thinking that they can work to any industry but instead by understanding the jargon or the product and technology itself.”[16:11]

“[On innovation] willing to put processes into experimental phase to see if it breaks down as you planned it on paper and expecting it to be perfect. You will be disappointed for it will not work.”[18:26]

“[On changing the culture] have fun as changing the business function is hard. If don’t have fun or laugh doing it then you will cry as will meet resistance, you will convince and talk to a lot people.”[19:05]

“If you are not willing to change something it’s going to be status quo. Change is a good thing so you have to approach it with thoughtfulness.”[23:19]

“At the end of the day its’ about the people. You can’t run the business without the people.”[24:27]

“Don’t be afraid to try new things because that’s how we learn how to figure things that will work and things that won’t fit in our business culture. Have that fortitude to go forward, try something different and conquer it because it is not outside the realm of finance to be creative and innovative.”[28:47]

(Other resources and how to connect with Nevine below).

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Key Points From the Episode:

· How finance people becomes part of the business instead of being revenue prevention or budget police.

· How to move away from traditional budgeting to beyond budgeting.

· How transformation impacts the organization and being the advocate of change.

· 3 ways on how to be an asset to the business.

Time Stamped Show Notes

[02:06] – Nevine share her career journey in accounting and finance as she worked in a telecommunication company in Denver Colorado and managed FP&A team for 10 years in a traditional American corporate way. Her team participated in a career building experience during their transformation into a more responsive financial processing and forecasting focus organization. She realized her contribution to the organization and became part of the business instead of being revenue prevention or policing the budget.

[04:14] – How to move towards beyond budgeting and away from traditional budgeting that had been a destructive process by not helping managing the telecom business that moves rapidly.

[08:30] – On embarking to process transformation as it made a lot of impact to other business processes. The support of the strong leader is crucial in setting the business niche of providing responsive service to customers.

[13:25] – How did transformation impact their organization. The focus of finance group provided at the frontline, the business processes that was streamlined and being advocate of the change.

[16:06] – Nevine tell us the 3 ways on how to be an asset to the business;

· Finance people really need to understand the business

· They need to innovate

· Have fun

[21:04] – What’s exciting most on Nevine’s work as she saw the shift of more finance people taking risk and willing to engage and embrace transformation.

[23:01] – The best bit of advice Nevine had from the leaders of the company that if nothing changes then nothing changes. If you want to do things better, if you want to see progress and transformation you have to be willing to change something. Strongly recommended to those who want to engage transformation must learn about Change Management.

[25:19] – Nevine’s best book to read by the audience.

[27:12] – How best to connect with Nevine.

[28:12] – Nevine’s parting thoughts on being brave and to try something different. It is not outside the realm of finance to be creative and innovative.

Resources Mentioned:

· Beyond Budgeting: How Managers Can Break Free from the Annual Performance Trap by Jeremy Hope and Robin Fraser o Hardcover: https://www.amazon.com/Beyond-Budgeting-Managers-Annual-Performance-ebook/dp/B005DI8YB6

· The Leader’s Dilemma: How to Build an Empowered and Adaptive Organization Without Losing Control by Franz Röösli, Jeremy Hope, and Peter Bunce o Hardcover: https://www.amazon.com/Leaders-Dilemma-Empowered-Adaptive-Organization/dp/1119970008/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=The+Leaders+Dilemma&qid=1558268869&s=books&sr=1-1 o Kindle: https://www.amazon.com/Leaders-Dilemma-Empowered-Adaptive-Organization-ebook-dp-B005LVQOOO/dp/B005LVQOOO/ref=mt_kindle?_encoding=UTF8&me=&qid=1558268869

· Future Ready: How to Master Business Forecasting by Steve Morlidge and Steve Player o Hardcover: https://www.amazon.com/Future-Ready-Master-Business-Forecasting/dp/0470747056 o Kindle: https://www.amazon.com/Future-Ready-Master-Business-Forecasting-ebook-dp-B003AU7DSY/dp/B003AU7DSY/ref=mt_kindle?_encoding=UTF8&me=&qid=

· Implementing Beyond Budgeting: Unlocking the Performance Potential by Bjarte Bogsnes o Hardcover: https://www.amazon.com/Implementing-Beyond-Budgeting-Unlocking-Performance/dp/111915247X/ref=tmm_hrd_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1558269958&sr=1-1-catcorr o Kindle: https://www.amazon.com/Implementing-Beyond-Budgeting-Unlocking-Performance-ebook/dp/B01HXJIY80/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1558269958&sr=1-1-catcorr

Connect with today’s guest: · LinkedIn Profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/nevinewhite/detail/contact-info/ · Website: https://www.livefuturereadyevents.com/


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