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Woe Is the CFO

These days, CFO may have more responsibility than the acronym was meant to handle. Does yours have what it takes to handle the scrutiny and the pressure?

By C.J. Prince

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

If you thought small-business CFOs weren't reeling from theEnron implosion like the financial chiefs of their billion-dollarbrethren, you thought wrong. "I definitely feel theheat," says Arthur Tanner, CFO of Circle Group Internet Inc.,a 34-employee Mundelein, Illinois, company that providescapital-raising and consulting services to emerging-growthcompanies.

Tanner, who recently prepared his company for listing on the OTCBulletin Board, says the scrutiny from shareholders, regulators andauditors has been intense. Where they once gave certain numbers acursory glance, "now they're asking more and morequestions," says Tanner. "Everybody was a little bit moreapprehensive than in the past, double-checking, triple-checking thenumbers." As auditors scramble to rebuild their reputations,they're putting more pressure on their clients. "I have toknow the rules a lot better because there are going to be morerules," says Tanner.

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