From Antimony to Erbium

No, this month’s blog is not a commodity travel guide. It’s all about change. For the last nine years the ACT’s offices were at 51 Moorgate, London. We have fond memories and a few quirky anecdotes. Our number “51” featured in the London 2012 Olympics one minute countdown. The offices were also frequently televised during the financial crash- they were immediately above a Northern Rock branch- and this has been a lasting reminder that the line between success and failure in business is more often about competence than luck. As growth returns though, the challenge for most employers is increasingly

Speaker blog: What do corporate treasurers really want from their banks?

Career corporate banker-turned-corporate treasurer, Mohamed Al-Afif, shares his insights. In my current role as Group Treasurer al Al-Gihaz Holding, I manage the overall relationships with key banking partners and take a lead role in debt facility negotiations with lending institutions. Having spent almost six years as a corporate banker, this has a number of advantages. We speak the same language, which can shortcut lengthy negotiations or potential limitations. It has also made me more conscious of managing my demands, as I am wary of what qualifies as an over demand or an under demand, and I can manage accordingly. Lastly,

Speaker blog: Planting the seed – developing treasury talent along the path to CFO

What does it take to be a good treasurer? It takes a certain type of person to be a good treasurer, and it takes a certain type of person to be a great treasurer. While every treasury role is unique, I believe there are specific skills (interpersonal and technical) that every good treasurer should possess. The treasury function often liaises with multiple departments, so an ability to connect the dots – in an approachable and diplomatic way – is vital. A key part of my current role is bridging the gap between the local finance and commercial teams, and head

Speaker blog: Strategic treasurer – getting a seat at the table

Meeting the business’ increased demand for strategy support. The experienced treasurer has always had the necessary skills to advise the board. It is not so much that the treasury skillset has changed significantly, more that a company’s opinion and awareness of treasury has evolved. The global financial crisis of 2008 was a real tipping point, a catalyst for change and a considerable opportunity for treasurers, when the board realised the inherent value of robust risk management. It was noted in the Contemporary Treasurer 2015 that “year-on-year, treasurers are having greater interaction with their boards and more of their recommendations are

I’m going to do nothing!

In the recent member survey you told us that supplementing your treasury technical skills with leadership, influencing, management and communication skills was essential to progressing your career. We listened to that when developing the Career Hub, so there’s a wealth of content covering broader business and behavioural skills, all mapped against our competency framework. “It will help me do more, more efficiently and effectively!” So says an article featured on our new ACT Career Hub, just one of many interesting articles, courses, podcasts, videos and other resources available to members and students to support your career development. But don’t just

This October, is my CAN-DO month

Winter is coming! Nights are getting darker and colder, your favourite series is back on TV and party season is starting. There is more temptation than ever during the winter season to avoid opening up your unit materials. The last thing you want to do when you come home from work is to start your studies… No more excuses! This is your CAN-DO month – a promise to yourself to get motivated and start studying. Don’t get me wrong, it is important to get the work, life and study balance right, but you can start by doing a few steps

6 ways to show off without annoying people

…and other lesser known insider tips for getting ahead in your career Picture the scene. You’ve passed your ACT exams with flying colours, all those hours of hard work have paid off, and you’ve just started your dream job in treasury. Happy days. Then your new CEO asks you to conduct an analysis of the treasury department’s policies and processes, and present your findings to the board. Panic. The only presentation you’ve ever given was about fifteen years ago at university, to a group of very bored and largely hungover fellow students. Memories of malfunctioning laptops, thumbed scraps of paper

ACT career hub

I’m delighted to announce the launch of the new ACT career hub There is a wealth of information on this new site, from Ashridge Business school course content to industry guides to CV builders – and all exclusive to members and students! Do log in to your account (all members and students have an account, if you have forgotten your password go to and have a look! Why we’ve done it One of the key objectives I wanted to achieve when putting together the site was to ensure members and students had support in the Business Skills, Behavioural Skills and Character