Kristen Broome joined Commio as our Chief Financial Officer just this summer, but she brings more than 20 years of experience in Finance to the role. We took this opportunity to get to know her a little better.
What does a CFO do in general, and what specifically do you do here?
My role includes managing the financial operations of the company, as well as analyzing the company’s financial strengths and weaknesses and using that information to propose strategic directions for the executive team. I also focus on identifying process improvements and synergies that are necessary to support the growth of the company.
For example, since joining the company, I’ve collaborated with our exec team to enhance our budgeting process by finding ways to successfully track revenue and cost performance on a consistent basis. The goal with this granularity is to identify areas where we are excelling and how to fuel that growth, and to know what isn’t working and when to pivot our strategy.
What do you think sets your team apart from similar jobs at other companies?
Everyone here has a really good foundational knowledge of our industry and of their area of responsibility. We have very intelligent people on the Finance team who have the ability to think outside the box, which is critical for a growing company. They work cohesively, attack challenges with excitement, and are genuinely passionate about what we do.
What excites you about going to work in the morning?
Hands down, it’s the people, what we do, and finding ways to positively impact the company. I really enjoy collaborating with the executive team and providing them with a greater understanding of our financial performance and how we’re tracking towards our goals. There’s a sense of good synergy as we work towards common goals and transfer knowledge across departments so that the entire company is aligned.
If you could do some other job, what would it be and why?
I honestly wouldn’t do anything else – I absolutely love what I do! One day when I decide to retire, I will spend more time traveling with my family, but I don’t see that happening for a long time.
What do your customer interactions look like? What might a customer say about you and why?
My team has more direct communication with our external and internal customers than I do, but I provide support for them on any escalations. My team’s focus is and will always be to create the best relationship with our customers and to provide support for others throughout our organization in their communication with our customers. Ultimately, we love our customers – they’re the reason we’re here!
What’s the best compliment you’ve ever received at work?
One of the most pivotal moments in my career happened when I was a Director of HR/Finance at a prior private equity backed company. The chairman of our board was not only the managing partner of the private equity firm, but he was also one of my mentors. During a discussion one day, he mentioned that I had greater potential and that I would ultimately become a CFO. I hadn’t envisioned this as my career path at the time, but he saw something different in me than I saw in myself.
That moment changed the way I viewed my role within my company and ultimately what I saw for my career in the future. I had always enjoyed learning new things, but I now focused on learning and absorbing anything and everything that would help me achieve this next step in my career path. This, in turn, resulted in unlocking opportunities I didn’t know existed. I’m very thankful for his mentorship and for the impact of what he said on my career and life.
Who do you work most closely with and what do you like about them?
I work very closely with the executive team here at Commio and I really appreciate the passion and collaboration they bring to work every day. We interact well together, which makes it very easy to accomplish things. I’ve worked with a lot of teams over the years and this one is definitely fantastic.
When I decided to join Commio, I was excited about the opportunity to branch into a new vertical of SaaS, but the connection I experienced with the executive team when I interviewed was what really sealed the deal for me. I felt an ease speaking with each of them, and it really felt like our skills and goals were aligned. I knew beyond a doubt that we could accomplish a lot together.
For fun…Dogs or cats? What’s the deciding factor?
Dogs, for sure! They are like an emotional support animal that gives you complete, unconditional love. There’s almost no other feeling like cuddling with your dogs at the end of a hard day! (Don’t tell my kids I just said that.) We have three at home: two Weimaraners and a Shih-tzu.
If you won the lottery jackpot, how would you spend it?
I love this question! I have a huge soft spot for children who have been abused or are in need — the same for mothers in bad situations. So, I would use this money to set up different foundations to help people. I already have what I need, so for me, it would be about the people I could impact that is most important.