Network like a CFO

Survey: Financial Executives Favour Networking Via Email; Preference for Attending Networking Events, Meetings and Conferences Tumbles

TORONTO, July 17, 2015 /CNW/ - When it comes to business networking, email is the communication channel of choice for busy finance executives. Three-quarters (76 per cent) of chief financial officers (CFOs) interviewed recently said they opt for email correspondence to keep in touch with professional colleagues. Face-to-face meetings or events were a distant third place, after social media and online networking.

The Robert Half Management Resources survey showed evolving preferences for CFOs. In a similar survey three years ago, email correspondence, although still the top choice, was less popular than today, while the preference for attending professional events has dipped considerably in the last three years. As to what they hope to achieve through their outreach, respondents most commonly cited growing their business, which ranked second in 2012.

CFOs were asked, "How do you prefer to network professionally?" Their responses:


2015

2012

Email correspondence

76%

42%

Networking online (social media)

9%

11%

Attend professional events, meetings, conferences

8%

33%

None/don't network

8%

10%

Other/don't know

0%

4%


101%

100%

CFOs were also asked, "What is the primary purpose of your professional networking activities?" Their responses:


2015

2012

Grow business

67%

38%

Keep up with industry news and developments

31%

49%

Recruit new talent

2%

2%

Find a new job

0%

1%

Other/don't know

0%

10%


100%

100%

"With the growing demands of busy work and travel schedules, email is an effective way for executives to stay connected to their teams and professional networks," said David King, Canadian president of Robert Half Management Resources.

However, relying too heavily on email may mean senior executives are missing out on opportunities for deeper business-building connections, cautions King. "Professionals shouldn't discount the value of in-person events as a way to build relationships and give you access to new contacts, in ways technology doesn't allow. Being a visible part of your industry's community both online and offline will go a long way in enhancing company credibility, and broaden your exposure to business insights and trends which can be then used to promote your own business's growth."

Robert Half Management Resources highlights five additional networking tips for senior-level professionals to broaden their connections and visibility:

  1. Build a presence at industry events. Delivering a presentation or facilitating a workshop at a national or chapter meeting will introduce you to peers and other business contacts. In addition, you'll establish yourself as a thought leader.
  2. Mentor others. By sharing the wisdom you've gained throughout your career, you can foster a pipeline of future leadership and gain the personal satisfaction that comes with helping your protégé advance his or her career.
  3. Volunteer with philanthropic and community organizations. While making a difference in the lives of others, you can also expand your network and gain insights into diverse perspectives by interacting with people from different backgrounds and fields.
  4. Serve in a leadership position outside the company. Taking on roles in business and community groups enables you to showcase your leadership skills to others in the organization and meet people who may be able to help you and your company.
  5. Engage with your alma mater. You will help prepare the next generation of professionals while enhancing your firm's connections with professors and career centres. Your contributions could build student affinity for your company's brand as well.

About the Survey
The survey was developed by Robert Half Management Resources and conducted by an independent research firm. It is based on telephone interviews with more than 270 CFOs from a stratified random sample of companies in more than 20 of the largest Canadian markets.

About Robert Half Management Resources
Robert Half Management Resources is the premier provider of senior-level finance, accounting and business systems professionals to supplement companies' project and interim staffing needs. The company has 150 locations worldwide and offers assistance to business leaders and consultants at roberthalfmr.ca and on its blog at blog.roberthalfmr.com. Follow @RobertHalf_CAN on Twitter for additional workplace advice and hiring trends.

SOURCE Robert Half Management Resources

For further information: Naz Araghian, 416.865.2140, naz.araghian@roberthalf.com


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