Regulators Are Not the Customer!

Is finance the enemy of breakthrough innovation…

… because they misidentify who their customer is?

Big-picture, finance interfaces with regulators/auditors but ultimately needs to see their customer as the one who buys the products/services. It puts finance on the same side as the business, a partner/collaborator that should challenge assumptions and think creatively within the finance space.
— Sam Winter, Director of Finance, Thrivent Financial

Certainly, there are many requirements, and feasibly, constraints placed on business from various legal and compliance organizations.

Aren’t we forced to “account” and report in pre-defined ways?

Of course, we need to comply and provide information to external parties, regulators and other agencies in the prescribed format, but they are not the customer!

A restaurant doesn’t exist for the health inspector,
even though it is critical to have a healthy, functioning restaurant

 Every business exists for its patrons.

 Our business information and internal insights are a high priority…

…but the business is not the customer either.

Finance should not be seen as “separate” from the business.

A key consideration that should be raised is the right of the business leader to have the opportunity to impact the manner in which compliance is obtained, and ultimately the opportunity to impact the costs of compliance.

Adjustments or reconciliations necessary to satisfy external needs should be carefully identified, evaluated and implemented as needed.

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About the Author


Marita LaChapell

Marita's 30-year career brings a unique skill set as an experienced CFO / CPA with financial analysis expertise, Enterprise / Information Systems knowledge, and Lean Six Sigma Black Belt experience in transforming operations. Combined, this enables her to assist business owners in tackling their challenges and growing profitably. Through her expertise as a wealth advisor and personal financial specialist (CKA®, CLTC®) she can advise regarding the most impactful ways to utilize your and your company's wealth.

To learn more about her consulting practice and connect with Marita, view her profile or connect with her here.