Finance flash: the TOP-10 articles of week 11, 2017


Do you want to keep up to date with the latest developments in finance, but you are short of time? Don’t worry. CFO South Africa weekly collects 10 of the most important articles from international media for your convenience.

1. The Fundamental Differences Between Leadership And Management
Visionary leadership combined with great management achieves the best results. Seems obvious right? Then why do so many companies get it wrong, especially during times of needed change? There are fundamental differences between leadership and management that apply to any team or organization, but the focus of this article is to explore the strengths of each as they apply to leading organizational change.

2. Home Depot to Pay $27M Over Data Breach
In the latest settlement of legal claims arising out of a massive 2014 data breach at Home Depot, the retailer has agreed to pay $27.25 million to affected financial institutions. Banks that file valid claims will get a "fixed payment award" of about $2 per compromised payment card without having to prove their losses, even if they have received compensation from another source.

3. How to improve fraud controls in complex accounting areas
It stands to reason that accounting areas that are highly subjective and complex also are prone to fraud, errors, and breakdowns in internal controls. A recent study by the Anti-Fraud Collaboration discovered challenges in these accounting areas and has led to new recommendations for company accounting policies and internal control over financial reporting (ICFR).

4. Research: How Incentive Pay Affects Employee Engagement, Satisfacti...
Most managers would agree that motivated, productive employees are crucial for organizational success, regardless of company size, industry, or corporate strategy. The question is how to motivate them. Offering employees performance-based incentive pay is one common approach, and it usually takes one of two forms: bonuses are offered to individuals based on assessments of their performance, or bonuses are offered as organization-wide incentives, such as profit-related pay or share ownership.

5. Data-as-a-Service Lessons From a Company That Was Right About Trump
The US presidential election results sent shock waves around the world and led us to question the validity of political polls, one of the longest-standing and most prestigious data products. Those of us who watched the polls were told that Hillary Clinton was clearly in the lead. In 2016, The Huffington Post tracked 377 polls from 43 pollsters in the US through Nov. 7th, as visualized here. The model predicted that Clinton was very likely leading. One company correctly predicted both Brexit and Trump's victory, using data insights that most pollsters missed. This is how to make your own.

6. 6 disruptive forces for boards to tackle
Organisations are up against several forces that boards should consider, including technological advances, geopolitical developments, and a changing workforce. Boards that tackle the challenges could gain competitive advantages for the companies they oversee. The EY Center for Board Matters and the WomenCorporateDirectors Foundation suggest boards increasingly focus on these six change factors.

7. 7 Powerful Leadership Lessons From A Hypnotist
Everyone wants to be successful. And while most of us can achieve a certain level of success on our own, multiplying our prosperity and worth requires that we become leaders. And not everyone has the innate ability to become an effective leader. You may say: "Well, I have employees, and I'm a boss." Sure, but unless your employees see you as having excellent leadership skills, you'll likely run into some big and expensive problems. Maybe not now but soon.

8. Intelligent process automation: The engine at the core of the next-...
Full intelligent process automation comprises five key technologies. Here's how to use them to enhance productivity and efficiency, reduce operational risks, and improve customer experiences.

9. How to manage costs to fuel future growth
Cost management is back at the centre of the UK corporate agenda. In Deloitte's first biennial pan-European cost survey, "cost reduction" was the top strategic priority for UK companies, ahead of "sales growth" and "product profitability" (see Figure 1). This reflects a defensive posture, particularly in comparison to other European countries, which on average, rank the trend much lower.

10. CFOs to Trump: Stop Tweeting, Keep H1-Bs
The latest Duke University/CFO Global Business Outlook survey has found that CFOs in the U.S are concerned about how President Trump's off-the-cuff Twitter posts and public comments affect business. Results also show that CFOs are feeling more confident about economic growth than they have in more than a dozen years, and they support several of the president's policy initiatives.

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