Finance flash: the TOP-10 articles of week 7, 2020

Want to stay up to date with the latest developments in finance, but short on time? Don't worry. CFO South Africa weekly collects 10 of the most important articles from international media for your convenience.

1. Present Your Data Like a Pro
With so many ways to spin and distort information these days, a presentation needs to do more than simply share great ideas — it needs to support those ideas with credible data. That’s true whether you’re an executive pitching new business clients, a vendor selling her services, or a CEO making a case for change.

2. Discovering the Hidden Drivers of Decision Making
In a sense, there is no such thing as an irrational decision. The choices we make are based on deep-seated ideas about how the world works – which researchers call “mental models”. We could be working with the best possible information, but if our mental models are out of step with reality, our decisions will be similarly skewed.

3. Three Ways of Driving Success in An Acquisition
Global corporations have continued to show a strong appetite for acquisitions in the last several years, and 2020 is likely to be no different. More than two-thirds of companies (68%) said they expect the mergers and acquisitions market to improve in the next 12 months, according to the October 2019 EY Capital Confidence Barometer (CCB).

4. Beyond hiring: How companies are reskilling to address talent gaps
As potential skill shortages loom, a new survey finds that many companies are using multiple tactics to close gaps and that reskilling efforts are paying off.

5. 5 Trends in Data Emerging in 2020
Ever-changing trends in data have been around for decades, and there are many reasons as to why they're constantly changing. Based on current marketing and sales, here are just a few of the many data trends set to happen in the 2020s.

6. How to achieve a successful negotiation
A high-stakes negotiation with implications for the entire global economy is a timely reminder that negotiation is a skill that management accountants must develop and practise carefully to optimise their business results.

7. Why focusing on meaning, and not happiness, makes us better off
Many adults will face psychological pain at some point in their lives. Striving for (and expecting) happiness can make that worse.

8. The data you didn’t know you were missing out on
Many finance departments are neglecting and even ignoring one of their most critical streams of data: the money leaving the business. This data can yield insights about what is holding the business back and what needs to be done to take it to the next level, yet many companies remain overly fixated on the money coming into the business.

9. Data Governance: The New Frontier for the Board
Does data governance require more attention at the board-level, or perhaps a separate board committee?

10. How Leaders Should Navigate Long-Term Uncertainty
Entrepreneurs and change managers may ultimately be selling a dream, but that’s not what stakeholders are buying. Imagine having to sell a totally new, game-changing product with no samples, no prototype, not even a realistic rendering. The only thing certain about it? A hefty price tag. Now imagine you have to sell this product not just once, but repeatedly, to the same people, over a period of years.