What makes a great CFO?

How to upgrade your finance leadership skills

Insights from Effective CFOs

Only one in five of today’s chief financial officers (CFOs) both exceed CEO expectations for contribution to short-term financial performance and promote company behaviors that lead to sustained top- and bottom-line growth. Gartner surveyed 100+ CFOs globally and found great CFOs become more customer-oriented, build constructive tension with the CEO and board, apply financial leadership principles to time management and are closely involved with the business. Download the guide and learn what personally effective CFOs do differently with their time, relationships and teams.

Download Guide

Discover what separates the best-performing CFOs from the rest

By clicking the "Continue" button, you are agreeing to the Gartner Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

Contact Information

All fields are required.

  • Step 2 of 3

    By clicking the "Continue" button, you are agreeing to the Gartner Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

    Company Information

    All fields are required.

    Type company and location
    Optional Optional
  • Step 3 of 3

    By clicking the "Submit" button, you are agreeing to the Gartner Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

    CFOs are plagued with uncertainty and time constraints

    The pace of change is fast, organizations are becoming more complex and CFOs are finding themselves in increasingly unfamiliar situations, forced to write the playbook on what makes a great CFO as they go. CFOs tell Gartner that they want to reduce their time with the finance function by 5%, indicating they recognize but can’t yet capture the value of reduced time with the function. CFOs need to increase effectiveness at taking the risks required to deliver long-term growth, and meeting CEO expectations on financial performance.

    Finance leaders are spending 25% to 50% of their time navigating unfamiliar situations.

    Great CFOs allocate time and personal capital to drive change

    Our insights into what makes a great chief financial officer (CFO) — based on an analysis of 100+ CFOs — can help you make better decisions more consistently and enable your organization to more rapidly implement major change initiatives. Use our tools to measure leadership success against the organization’s change initiatives.

    A CFO's duties must align to business growth goals

    At a time when organizations face unprecedented uncertainty, the need for CFOs to mobilize the drivers of business growth is critical. However, only 20% of CFOs are personally effective. Learn how great CFOs deliver short-term financial results and sustain long-term growth.

    Influence with the CEO is what makes a great CFO

    While 80% of CFOs have strong relationships with the CEO, only 30% of CFOs frequently change their CEO’s mind on major issues. Great CFOs influence their CEOs and build strong CEO-CFO relationships. Review this peer benchmarking to model great CFO performance.

    How to build a successful strategic plan for finance

    Does your strategic finance plan promote finance initiatives that will drive enterprise productivity, innovation and growth? Kick-start finance strategic planning with Gartner’s guide, which includes a proven template for saving time and communicating the plan effectively.

    Understand the trends shaping the future of finance

    As digital technologies continue to disrupt industries and markets, the finance function must transform to leap competition. Discover 10 trends shaping the future of finance and strategies to accelerate digital transformation in your finance function and organization.

    Questions about becoming a Gartner client?

    Business managers will continue to pull the same levers and push the same buttons; if you believe that the future looks different than the past, then different actions are required. I dedicate time to arrive at my own conclusions.
    EVP & CFO at a Major Retailer

    Gartner CFO & Finance Executive Conference

    Connect with our experienced practitioners and unbiased Gartner experts to discover innovative approaches to smarter business decisions and more.

    Gartner’s finance experts are trusted advisors and an objective resource for more than 1,750 finance organizations

    Gartner for Finance is a tailor-made solution providing trusted insights, strategic advice and practical tools that help finance leaders make the right decisions to drive business performance.