More Companies Look to Their Ranks for Future Finance Chiefs

Passing the CFO baton to an internal candidate can make for a smoother, safer transition, recruiters say

The Wall Street Journal | January 2, 2020

The Wall Street Journal's CFO Journal article, "More Companies Look to Their Ranks for Future Finance Chiefs," quoted Russell Reynolds Associates Consultant Jenna Fisher on companies looking internally for new CFOs. The article is excerpted below.

Companies are increasingly looking internally for their next finance chiefs, grooming junior executives in an effort to sidestep steep earning curves that can stymie outsiders and reduce the risks inevitably associated with hiring an outsider, especially in such a high-profile position, recruiters say.

Boards’ demand for strategic managers—not just numbers people—and pressure from investors, new regulations and technological change are adding complexity to the role. Finding the right person from the outside can be complicated, and the searches can also prompt exits of internal candidates that don’t make the cut.

“Companies now appreciate how hard it is to recruit great talent,” said Jenna Fisher, head of the corporate officers practice at executive recruitment firm Russell Reynolds Associates. About three-quarters of the Fortune 500 CFO searches Ms. Fisher is involved with have at least one internal candidate. Three years ago, she said, it was less than half.

To read the full article, click here.

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More Companies Look to Their Ranks for Future Finance Chiefs