014: Caterri Woodrum, CFO, North Carolina Museum of Art, on the Rigors and Rewards of Being a Not-for-Profit CFO

What is it like being the CFO of a large not-for-profit organization? Join us as Caterri explains how she put in place the financial underpinnings and processes that helped to drive a major expansion of the North Carolina Museum of Art inside the unforgiving cauldron of the economic downturn.

Listen to the Episode Below (00:29:35)


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Finance Philosophy

“Finance people have a great opportunity to partner with their lines of business — whether they be for-profit or not-for-profit — and in the process of doing so, they are going to find that they have unique skills that are needed. If they are just willing to step up and take charge of this, they can make a job anything they want it to be.”

Key Metrics

“At the top of the list is visitor participation, because we are not selling widgets. We are selling an experience, and you are relying on earned income that is being driven by your visitors. This means coming to an exhibition and buying retail products or coming to a performing arts program and dining in your restaurant.”

Mentoring Round

“Listening skills are extremely important. You can’t believe that you already know it all, because you don’t — and oftentimes your staff knows more than you do. Listening skills are something that I have learned to value, and it helps me to hear what my people are saying.”

Business Applications

“We use SAS Financial Management with business analytics. …I think where a lot of not-for-profits go wrong is that they don’t invest in infrastruture and they are so busy managing their limited resources. There were over 100 projects that needed to have detailed project accounting. …We had looked at a lot of systems but we felt SAS could grow with the business. In most not-for-profits this can be a real weakness.”

Business Book Pick

The Effective Executive: The Definitive Guide to Getting the Right Things Done (Harperbusiness Essentials) By Peter Drucker


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