Financial technologies or ‘fintech’ for short, is as it sounds: technologies that improve financial outcomes. For business owners operating in, or wanting to expand globally, fintech discussions should be the leading topic in business development conversations.
In an earlier article, I covered the pros and cons of payment processors, here I explore the role of new technologies in managing and creating effective international teams and the flow on benefits for business owners.
Here’s a question for you…
How do you bring teams together when they are located in different parts of the world, work in different time zones and speak different languages to achieve collective goals and complete projects?
The answer is two-fold.
Firstly, it’s about recognising that traditional staffing models don’t necessarily bring the best outcomes, you need to look to the world for opportunities available to you; and secondly, you’ll need to embrace technology in a big way if you are serious about growth and expanding your global reach. Your financial future depends on it.
Communication technologies have revolutionised how we do business in a very short space of time and it has slashed business costs. Teams now meet on video calls rather than spending unproductive hours on congested roads or waiting at airports to attend in person. Business moves more freely as orders once mailed, then emailed and now made directly through payment processors, progress from immediate payment to picking and delivery at what was once unimaginable speed and efficiency.
Business owners investing in a global presence, not only gain access to a larger customer base, but a much larger pool of candidates capable of not just meeting their workforce requirements but bringing skills that can rapidly advance the business. The point is, a quality workforce is vital, and every element of your teams’ engagement and performance relates directly back to your financial outcomes.
Your goal as a business leader creating global teams, is to ensure team members feel connected and behave as one, and this involves systems.
However, implementing systems that support global teams isn’t for the faint-hearted.
I know because this is my reality.
I have direct experience working with international businesses that successfully manage individuals – employees, contractors, consultants and their teams – across borders, nationalities and time zones.
From my base in Sydney, I form part of several international teams. As an external CFO, I interact with inhouse financial management personnel, support staff and highly skilled external professionals and consultants who are located in Spain, Germany, India, Philippines, Singapore and the UK. Together we innovate, solve problems and create outcomes that are often beyond the capabilities of local resources.
In this environment, the sum of my specialised knowledge of tax, business and accounting software is applied on a much larger scale. For example, in collaboration with international IT team members we customise ‘live’ financial management systems so they seamlessly merge with governing systems in overseas headquarters. These systems allow people on the ground to do their job locally, while providing me with access to financial data that I analyse and provide as financial management reports along with my insights that directly contribute to the overall global operation. Additionally, systems allow team members’ performance to be measured and rewarded in a fair and equitable manner.
This type of all-encompassing, no barriers financial management has countess benefits. Perhaps the most important is access to better quality information sourced compiled by highly qualified and experienced leaders in their fields who are using the latest and best systems. This leads to better quality decisions, improved profits and increased net equity.
Success breeds success as strongly integrated systems provide global teams with the resources necessary for creating efficiencies and delivering outcomes across borders. Progressive business owners know that a video discussion with a highly proficient and motivated provider in their own work environment who delivers outstanding outcomes is a far better option than a traditionally employed mediocre staff member in the next office.
For the growth focussed businesses I work with, and who have achieved turnover targets of between $5 million and $100 million within three to five years of their operational life, investing in talent, forming international teams and exploring fintech opportunities to support them is a no-brainer.
Without effective leadership the embraces technology, your world of opportunities will surely shrink as your tech-savvy competitors will take your market share and steal your talent.
If this article has raised matters relating to your business growth, please contact me on email@example.com or call +61 2 9699 9971 to book an appointment in my Sydney office or on a video call.
Our discussion can cover how fintech solutions support global operations, the role of international teams for growth organisations, your current circumstances and the key steps and timelines for implementing fintech projects. Alternatively, if you are looking to improve your existing team performance and in turn, improve your financial outcomes, our discussion can include overviewing key areas of concern, global accounting and financial management systems development, your business goals and personal prosperity requirements.
Shane Kouros is a Chartered Accountant, financial management systems designer with special interest in financial technologies. He offers external CFO services that include business advisory services and tax advice that includes international tax expertise.