Kellogg Professor Harry Kraemer Shares His Thoughts on the Retirement of Ford CFO Bob Shanks (Article)

Ford CFO Bob Shanks retiring as company seeks to double profit, sources say

In a significant change in the leadership of Ford Motor Co., the automaker is preparing for the retirement of Bob Shanks, executive vice president and the chief financial officer since 2012.

…The importance of the CFO simply can’t be overstated, said Harry Kraemer Jr., a professor at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.

For any company, there are two very different ways to manage this role, he explained. Either it’s a pretty basic accounting position that moves numbers around with business savvy or it’s a partnership with the CEO that implements vision and runs the company together.

“Working closely with the CEO, you are a part of all economic decisions being made, whether to build a new plant or start a new line of cars or figure out what to do globally and domestically,” said Kraemer, himself a former CFO who moved into the CEO role at Baxter International, a $12-billion global health care company based in Chicago.

Read the full article in the Detroit Free Press here.

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