What Advice Do You Have for Managing Finance Teams Remotely?

    Authored By

    CFO Drive

    What Advice Do You Have for Managing Finance Teams Remotely?

    In the shift to remote work, even financial teams must adapt, so we sought advice from top financial leaders on how to manage this transition. From adapting to employee preferences to establishing rhythmic workflows, discover the experts’ key strategies for leading finance teams effectively from afar.

    • Adapt to Individual Employee Challenges
    • Welcome Feedback to Boost Investment
    • Foster a Culture of Trust and Accountability
    • Focus on Outcomes, Not Micromanagement
    • Establish Rhythmic Workflows

    Adapt to Individual Employee Challenges

    In today's world of remote working being commonplace, it can offer some interesting challenges to stay connected and engaged. Communication and connections sum up what I see as the greatest challenges to managing a remote finance team. Every employee has a different preference for communication; as a manager, you should adapt to them. Some might prefer Slack or email, while others need more face-to-face communication like Zoom. As a CFO managing a remote team, you should ask each employee what they are struggling with. Understanding what they see as their biggest challenges puts you in a position to better guide and manage your team. Your willingness to listen and hear them will open the door for them to reach out when they need your guidance or have questions about a task. Miscommunication can lead to a lot of frustration and extra work in dealing with finances. Hitting the mark with communication and connecting can be a huge win for all.

    Trena KennedyFinance Director, JEWISH KIDS GROUPS FOUNDATION

    Welcome Feedback to Boost Investment

    Be open to feedback. Regardless of whether you lead a small team or manage a multi-billion-dollar corporation, being receptive to feedback is crucial for maintaining morale and productivity within your finance team. The more you encourage your team members to express their thoughts, the better positioned you are to make informed decisions within the department.

    Being open to feedback is also essential as it helps you and your team handle the pressure that comes with making tough decisions. It's easy for managers and CFOs to feel detached from their teams, especially when they hold positions of authority.

    Whenever we decide on something, it's natural to become attached to our choices and to think that our approach is the only correct one. However, by welcoming feedback from others, we can gain new perspectives on issues and develop more effective solutions. From my experience, finance team members who feel recognized and are encouraged to contribute to changes in the workplace tend to be more invested. They care more because they see that their opinions are valued and taken seriously.

    Eric Croak, CFP
    Eric Croak, CFPPresident, Croak Capital

    Foster a Culture of Trust and Accountability

    Heading a finance team for a capital-intensive infrastructure project, I would say that to effectively manage a finance team remotely, one has to maintain clear and frequent communication along with setting precise and measurable goals. I would emphasize the use of digital tools for collaboration and to ensure access to necessary resources. My experience has been that it is also important to foster a culture of trust and accountability, encouraging team members to share ideas and challenges. Last but not least, regular feedback and virtual team-building activities are essential.

    Namita Mehrotra
    Namita MehrotraDirector Finance, National Capital Region Transport Corporation

    Focus on Outcomes, Not Micromanagement

    Communication and Collaboration:

    - Establish transparent goals and responsibilities.

    - Conduct regular virtual meetings for updates and feedback.

    - Utilize collaboration platforms like Slack or Asana.

    - Encourage open communication and trust.

    Work-Life Balance and Support:

    - Promote work-life balance to mitigate burnout risks.

    - Provide access to essential resources.

    - Invest in training to support team adaptation to remote work challenges and industry trends.

    Management Strategies:

    - Focus on outcomes rather than micromanagement.

    - Address communication barriers proactively.

    - Celebrate achievements to boost morale and team motivation.

    Santosh PandeyDirector - Finance, Amagi Media Labs Pvt Ltd

    Establish Rhythmic Workflows

    As a tech CEO, my advice for leading a finance team remotely is to establish a rhythmic work process. Having an organized and predictable workflow can help ensure that the team remains consistent and productive, even in a remote environment. Also, adopting a digital-first approach for all tasks can be a game-changer, with tools that provide real-time visibility into work, promote collaboration, and streamline communication. Nevertheless, while technology keeps us connected, recognizing and rewarding accomplishments brings everyone together. Ultimately, a remote team's success lies in balancing routine, technology, and appreciation.

    Abid Salahi
    Abid SalahiCo-founder & CEO, FinlyWealth