Navistar International’s A. J. Cederoth was pensive when asked what the future might hold. He is fully engaged with his role on one hand, but also is aware that he has quite some time ahead in his career during which to explore new horizons:
“I’ve been in this role for almost three years. I do find the opportunities when I’m able to act as senior advisor and strategic partner — be that to the business units or to the CEO — far more satisfying than when I’m simply trying to contain the decision-making process, or the spending process, or consolidate the financial statements. When I can help shape the direction of the business and help those that are executing the strategy, I find that very satisfying.
Do I hope that my actions may lead to the opportunity to potentially succeed to the CEO position? I’m very much a financial person.
I’ve had opportunities to make that move over to the operational side in the past, and have deliberately focused on staying on the financial side. But I have between 15 and 20 years left in my career, and I have a hard time envisioning that I would spend them all as the CFO.”