Monday, July 19, 2010

Bookkeepers and the CFO Work Great Together

I had a prospective client/business owner recently who was ready to hire me. He said before he hired me he had to ask his bookkeeper their opinion. The bookkeeper had not met me and did not know me and although I thought it was a strange way to operate I said that was fine. When I followed up with the prospect he said that the bookkeeper thought that a Part time CFO was not needed and based on that, the business owner said he was not going to hire me.

I was surprised by this. I felt bad for the business owner on how he would let the bookkeeper make such a decision. I told this prospective client and business owner that in my experience there were only two reasons why a bookkeeper would say no to CFO services without knowing or meeting the CFO:

1. The Bookkeeper is acting very inappropriately in the day to day responsibilities of their job (possibly stealing) or;

2. The Bookkeeper is afraid to have their numbers scrutinized in fear that inadequacies in the bookkeeping will be exposed.

The point is that bookkeepers and CFO's work famously well together. They compliment each other. The Part Time CFO goes into the engagement happy when they know a bookkeeper is on staff preparing the numbers and the CFO and bookkeeper work together to make sure the numbers are right so the best business decisions can be made for the client. The Bookkeeper and CFO are a powerful combination in terms of helping the business generate accurate financial numbers. That is why when a bookkeeper repels a CFO who they do not even know or never met, that should raise the eyebrow of the business owner.