Credit- alamy 

Are you a manager? How much do you understand finance?

Holding a managerial position is thrilling and challenging in almost equal measure. Not only will you be overseeing operations and guiding people on what to do, but you will also be responsible for making decisions crucial for the growth of the company. Without understanding finance, you may end up settling for the costly decisions unintentionally and leading the company to a path of financial strain. You might be wondering, why care to gather financial skills when you can get cheap labour easily, especially in Kenya? Here are some reasons:

 

To make informed decisions – as a manager, you will be tasked with making decisions all the time. Relying on surface knowledge about the benefits of the options is risky because they may have hidden costs that can strain the company later. When weighing options, you should also consider the cost of each and settle for the best. Finance for non-finance managers is designed to equip you with the necessary financial skills so you can make decisions while also considering the cost. Whether you are a new manager or has been in the industry for a while, the course below will give you a competitive edge.

Reduce the time it takes to make decisions- if you are a manager in a medium or large company, you are familiar with the lengthy process of decision analysis and approval. Although it is necessary, sometimes the process consumes too much time if minimal or no effort has been made by the key role players that upon approval, you may not be as excited to implement the activities. Other times, you may lose an opportunity if there is a queue of activities that need analysis and approval by financial experts. This is what happens if you don’t have a background in finance and together with other managers, you all rely on the few experts in the company. With financial skills however, you will be able to analyze the costs and benefits and make decisions that can thereafter be approved quickly.

Participate in making decisions crucial to your work and the company– have you ever sat in annual review meetings and all you heard were a long series of foreign words and numbers and couldn’t contribute? Have you ever nodded to an amount allocated for your department only to learn later that it was insufficient? Have you ever wanted to raise ideas you believed could drive productivity but because you didn’t know the financial bit you refrained? These are common occurrences if you know very little about finances. Gathering basic knowledge will help you to avoid such and more mistakes and assist in decision-making for your department or the company at large.

Manage finance-related risks – businesses are prone to risks and as a manager, you are responsible for mitigating and advising your team on the actions to take when some appear. Some require quick attention and with financial skills, you will be able to identify the right corrective measures rather than being at the mercy of the situation.

Detect financial fraud early- cases of financial fraud in companies are common. They normally occur when financial experts know that managers know little about finances and resort to exaggerating costs or transferring funds to personal accounts. Depending on their intention, financial extortion can go on for months only to come to light when the company is bankrupt. By seeking financial education, you will know whether the financial team is working for the benefit or downfall of the company and which questions to pose where finances are concerned. Learning about finance will help you to detect fraud at its infancy and take the corrective measures.

To be active in all operations- many managers make a mistake of leaving financial activities to experts. Although this is often out of trust, there might be risks if accountants underestimate the impact of some challenges in the business. Financial education will help you to be more involved in the finance department. By combining your industry expertise and financial knowledge, you will be able to steer the company towards a productive path.

Manage money well – how else can you know that the seemingly good ideas are really good without financial education?

Reduce labour costs – is your company experiencing financial struggles due to the pandemic and you are trying to reduce costs? Or, are you are a manager in a start-up that is trying to gain footing? Financial skills will help you to juggle many roles to drive the company to great heights. Although the knowledge does not eliminate the need for a financial expert, you will be able to handle basic accounting thus reduce the labour costs.

 

In conclusion,

Nowadays, financial education is no longer restricted to those who have the background or an interest in the profession. It has become a basic skill. As a manager, the skills are essential because every decision has a cost attached to it.