Am I the only one who does not understand Blockchain?

by | Mar 20, 2018

Simplifying Blockchain Technology for Business Applications

I hate to admit it, but I am struggling here and can’t help but wonder if I am not the only one? I have tried attending seminars, webinars, reading articles but it’s not sinking in very quickly. I don’t think I am necessarily stupid; I am just not wired that way, or perhaps the information hasn’t been presented to me in a format that I can easily digest.

It got me to thinking, is this how many non-accountants feel about the monthly financial reports, or financials contained in the Board pack? Just a whole jumble of numbers, perhaps some tables and pretty graphs that the accountants produce each month but don’t mean much? I wonder just how many CEO’s, business unit managers and board directors who don’t have a financial background, really struggle with understanding the management and financial reporting that they get given.

But, for whatever reason the situation continues to persist, month in month out, from one Board meeting to the next. Be it the organisation does not have the necessary expertise within the finance team to do anything different. Or, individuals don’t like to admit they don’t understand for fear of appearing stupid in front of their peers, or simply don’t want to upset anyone in Finance by asking the reports to be presented differently. Or perhaps last time you tried that, you got rebuffed.

Things will only change if:

  • you have the right resources who understand the importance of producing relevant, timely financials in a suitable format readily understood by non-accountants. This resource needs to understand the Bigger Picture; and
  • you challenge the finance team to deliver the financial information the organisation needs to drive its business; and not simply produce the information that the system spits out, or that the accountants think is relevant. When was the last time your Finance team asked you, what information you actually need? ; and
  • those that don’t understand say so, and go about trying to upskill. There are many good courses out there for non-accountants at all levels of management and for Board directors.

Here is a quote from my last employer: “Knowing quite a few business owners, it’s amazing how many receive financials but don’t understand what they are reading at all. Their CFO or Accountant simply coughs up a report that complies but doesn’t mean anything to the business owner meaning they are blissfully unaware as to what is really happening. I’ve always felt you wanted the reports to mean something. It was important they were easy for all of us to read as a family and the General Manager group. The data had to give us something to aim for with benchmarks or indicate how we were travelling over time. It wasn’t about the most comprehensive report, but more about something meaningful that hopefully incited us to step into action on certain items. Over the years this sort of level of reporting, the timeliness of it to me has been a major strength of us as a group.

If your organisation needs to take a fresh look at the quality and relevance of its management and financial reporting, I am passionate about facilitating the delivery of accounts that make sense to the users.

Written By Debbie Millard

Master your business through strong leadership, knowing your numbers and empowering your people

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