Working in finance requires a unique set of skills and qualities. These include strong analytical and problem-solving abilities, the ability to think strategically and make sound business decisions, and excellent communication and interpersonal skills. Additionally, a professional in finance need to be detail-oriented and highly organized.
Furthermore, they need to have the ability to work well under pressure and handle complex information. In order to succeed in this field, individuals must also be self-motivated and willing to continuously learn and adapt to new technologies and industry trends.
A few weeks ago, I participated in a Q&A session with students from my business school about jobs in Finance. One of the most asked questions was about the qualities you need to have to be a good finance professional. In this article, I will share my view on the crucial qualities you need to have as a finance professional.
Skills and Qualities of A Professional in Finance
Here are the skills and qualities you require to become a top-notch Finance professional.
You need to know how to read financial statements and how to translate the business activity into the general ledger of a company. In addition, it should be mandatory for every individual wanting to have a career in finance. Furthermore, this is even true for people that want to go in the direction of financial planning and controlling. For example, one needs to understand how the capitalization of assets like WIP or a change in a provision can have a direct impact on the P&L.
Finance is present in many different departments and through different types of operations. Therefore, being able to understand these transactions and their financial treatment is what your business partners expect from you. For example, you need to be able to evaluate how delays in deliveries to a client can affect your revenues.
Analytical Skills for A Professional in Finance
The amount of data and information is constantly increasing. As a finance professional, this means that you need a better understanding of the bigger picture and identify what this information means for your organization. In other words, the better you can digest it and the faster you can communicate actionable knowledge to your peers and partners, the more valuable you are to your company.
Finance has a support function in a company. What does it mean for you? You should see yourself as a service provider and your business partners from other departments as your (internal) clients. Therefore, ask for feedback and put yourself in your business partner’s shoes to optimize how you provide the best service you can.
IT and Data Literacy
Transformation is everywhere, and digitalization plays a significant role. Nowadays, mastering Excel and knowing how to use an ERP is the bare minimum. However, being able to program RPA (robotic process automation) software or create an automated report from a BI tool will give you much more opportunities and will help you to secure a position in innovative finance teams.
Conclusion – Build Your Knowledge to Become A Professional in Finance
In conclusion, finance professionals need to possess a combination of hard and soft skills. This is the key to success in this dynamic and ever-changing field.
Additionally, finance professionals must be detail-oriented, organized, and willing to continuously learn and adapt to new technologies and industry trends in order to stay ahead of the competition and drive business success.
If you want to learn more skills and finance insights, you can take my course.