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How to talk about failure without using the F word

By Andy Burrows

Do you feel like a failure sometimes?

Do you get embarrassed or demotivated because of things that haven’t gone right for you?

Do you look at other people and get jealous because they’re successful and you’re not?

Well, if so, I hope that my personal reflections will help you.

My biggest failure

When Talita Ferreira was interviewing me for her Leadership Hypothesis video series, she tripped me up unintentionally by asking me a question. She asked me, “could you say there’s a failure in your career somewhere that someone could learn from?”

For some reason, the question I heard (and which sticks in my mind) was: What is your biggest failure?

My heart started pounding at that point, and I had to quickly compose myself. I was being recorded! The show must go on!

I didn’t duck the question. But I don’t think my answer was entirely coherent either! And you can check out the interview and 26 others like it in Talita’s ...

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How to build influence and be more visible as a Finance professional

By Andy Burrows

Influence is something that Finance people in business really want, it seems to me.

I hear it a lot:

“How can I get more influence in the business?”

“How can I increase my visibility in the business?”

“How can I get included in strategic discussions, instead of being kept out?”

And that’s thinking in the right kind of way, fundamentally. We don’t want to just provide information, or even merely insight based on information. We don’t want to turn our work over to the non-Finance areas of the business in a “take-it-or-leave-it” kind of way.

We want our work to make a difference. And it can only make a difference if people listen to us, understand us, take note and act on what we tell them.

Our information should deliver insight. But for our insight to have impact we need to have influence!

So, this article gives you five ways to do that. It’s not the whole story, but it will give you a lot to think...

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Confidence, Communication and Influencing Skills for Finance Business Partnering

By Andy Burrows

I want to give some helpful thoughts today about developing the behavioural skills needed for Finance business partnering.

I’ve written in the past about how essential it is for Finance business partners, CFOs, and indeed Finance professionals in general, to develop behavioural skills. And I know that other Finance writers are talking about this too.

And people are hearing the message, and I get asked about it. One question I received during a Finance careers event went something like this:

“I’ve worked in technical accounting and as a financial accountant, but my ambition is to do the best I can in my career. So, I really want to move to a Finance Business Partner role, as I feel there is more career growth potential in that area. My challenge is that my behavioural skills need a serious boost. What can I do to help improve my communication skills and my ability to influence or persuade my stakeholders, or even to simply be convincing enough at...

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