I had an interview with Pedro Garcia who is the financial manager of Starbucks Company. Starbucks is an organization that deals in coffee, snacks, and espresso drinks. As such, the financial manager of Starbucks has several responsibilities to ensure that the company’s operations run smoothly. The manager has a duty to manage the company’s budgets in order to ensure that the company operates within the finances allocated for a variety of expenses within the company. Garcia explained that managing budgets involves monitoring the company’s expenses to ensure that Starbucks’ actual expenses do not exceed the standard costs set by the company. This has made it possible for Starbucks to grow and expand its operations. Additionally, Garcia conducts market research in matters related to pricing, competitors, and other factors that influence the performance of the organization. For instance, research made it possible for Garcia to recognize the importance of creating a comfortable setting for their customers. This led the company to adopt the Italian culture, which is characterized by big comfy sofa sets and rounded tables. This has increased Starbucks performance and profitability as the comfortable environment allows customers to socialize as they drink their coffee. In fact, customers have become attracted to the company as it has become like a “third place” when they are away from work and their homes.
Furthermore, Garcia job description requires him to carry out risk assessments and business modeling. This is important, as an organization has to determine the level of risks they might incur when venturing in a new product line. As such, the organization has managed to avoid losing money by avoiding making risky investments that may not yield good returns. Garcia together with other managers takes part in strategic planning and strategic analysis. This gives Starbucks Company a sense of direction thus ensuring that the organization obtains a competitive edge.
The position of a financial manager requires Garcia to get involved in various types of writing. During the interview, he explained that writing of documents formed an integral part of his daily work. Through writing, he is able to communicate to different people at various times. To begin with, it is important for Garcia to prepare business plans for Starbuck’s operations. Usually, the detailed plan is very elaborate because it has to clearly address the goals an organization hopes to achieve. In writing a business plan, Garcia has to address a various aspects such as an executive summary, Swot Analysis, Industry Analysis, product line, and eventually the funding request. The executive summary gives the financial manager an opportunity to provide investors and financial institutions with a condensed idea of the purpose of the new services introduced by the business, as well as its aims. Mentioning these aspects is crucial for Starbucks Company because this will enable Garcia to obtain funding whenever the company wants to venture into a new service or product. Since business plans are mostly written to financiers or potential investors, they tend to be detailed in order to convince its audience so that they can fund the company.
Another writing in which the financial manager is involved in are the reports. Reports are written to address a given issue or problem within the organization in a clear and concise manner. In fact, they are the most common types of writing that Garcia handles. Through reports, Garcia is able to communicate to the top management including Howard Schultz, Starbucks CEO about various issues affecting the company. While writing a report, Garcia has to record a given subject or problem the company is facing especially if it is of a financial nature. Garcia will then interpret the significance of the underlying issue and then evaluate the outcome of the research conducted. Thereafter, Garcia discusses the course of action taken together with a conclusion and recommendations of how best to handle the situation. All these details should be put in an organized and well-structured manner to make it easy for the top officials to comprehend.
Garcia’s office further requires him to prepare condensed financial statements from the financial documents provided by the accountant. This is important as this enables Garcia to ensure that the company has met its tax obligations in accordance with the government policies. Finally, Starbuck’s financial manager develops financial models for the organization. In most cases, Garcia makes use of excel sheets to design his models. The models often include an analysis of Internal Rates of Return (IRR) so as to increase the organization’s returns in its investment project. Moreover, the process involves the use of input and output cells for purpose of data entry. Numerical data plays a key role in financial models given that it is the basis for interpreting the outcome of various financial models developed by Garcia. Output cells often involve formula or even links that direct one to the data source. On the other hand, the input cells are where the hard coded data are usually entered. The outcome of these financial models that are designed by Garcia is that they are able to provide information to various stakeholders about the total incomes, total costs, and other aspects of the business. Evidently, financial managers cannot distance themselves from engaging in business writing because it is only in this way that they can effectively carry out their roles and assist the management in achieving the goals of an organization.