Finance flash: the TOP-10 articles of week 13, 2019

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. Organizational culture in mergers: Addressing the unseen forces
Cultural factors and organizational alignment are critical to success (and avoiding failure) in mergers. Yet leaders often don’t give culture the attention it warrants—an oversight that can lead to poor results. Some 95 percent of executives describe cultural fit as critical to the success of integration. Yet 25 percent cite a lack of cultural cohesion and alignment as the primary reason integration efforts fail.

2. McDonald's Just Bought a Little Known Startup for $300 Million. It Was a Brilliant Move--Here's Why
McDonald's stunned a lot of people yesterday when it announced its biggest acquisition in 20 years--one that reportedly cost it over $300 million. No, McDonald's didn't buy a competitor. It bought a tech company.

3. 3 priorities for building future finance leaders
In June 2018, the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants published the report The Changing Role and Mandate of Finance. The report is part of the Association’s Future of Finance research series. The research included more than 300 interviews and 50 roundtable discussions on the topic of the finance function of the future. In order to make progress towards this future vision, three key transformation priorities are proposed...

4. Metric of the Month: Number of Accounts in the Chart of Accounts
APQC is currently in the middle of transitioning to a new ERP system. In my role as CFO, the most challenging part of this project by far has been cleaning up our chart of accounts as we make the move. With more than 5,000 accounts, our chart of accounts has gotten incredibly bloated over the years. A bloated chart of accounts still functions ? just not very efficiently.

5. Become More Articulate (You Don't Have to Give a TED Talk to Do It)
Tripping over your words in business meetings or everyday small talk can be a large source of insecurity for many. After all, it can be overwhelmingly frustrating to have great ideas but have zero ability to communicate them. Strong, spoken articulation is often associated with being more intelligent and more capable. Here are five ways to become more articulate in both your personal and professional life.

6. How to Calculate Your Innovation's Odds of Success
When I first became a CEO, at age 33, I read everything I could find about legendary business leaders and the companies they created. I was trying to discover the secret to building an innovative organization that would empower employees, deliver on our bold mission to develop a new cancer drug, and reward stakeholders. The answer, according to many, was corporate culture:

7. Creating More Economic Equality for Women
From a financial resources perspective, women remain relatively disadvantaged. The latest Global Gender Gap Report from the World Economic Forum finds an “economic participation and opportunity gap” of 41.9 percent between men and women globally. Even in developed economies where women are relatively well represented in the workforce, they continue to receive only around 80 cents for every dollar a man earns – and when they are women of colour, even less.

8. What Makes Some People More Productive Than Others
We’ve learned a lot about personal productivity and what makes some people more productive than others. Last year we published a survey to help professionals assess their own personal productivity — defined as the habits closely associated with accomplishing more each day. The survey focused on seven habits: developing daily routines, planning your schedule, coping with messages, getting a lot done, running effective meetings, honing communication skills, and delegating tasks to others.

9. PepsiCo Indonesia CFO: How I drive the business
While well-known for its soft drinks, PepsiCo is more than a beverage company. It owns the Frito-Lay and Quaker Oats brands, and its beverage business includes Gatorade, Tropicana juice, and bottled water in addition to its iconic beverage, Pepsi. In 2017, it was the third largest food and beverage company in the world with global sales of $96.5 billion, behind Nestlé and the Coca-Cola Company.

10. The benefits of a digitally fit risk function
Companies with high-performing risk functions from a digital perspective — labelled in the survey report as Dynamics — have a distinct advantage over those classified as Actives or Beginners. Dynamics ranked in the top quartile across several dimensions, Actives in the next quartile, and Beginners in the lower half.