What it Takes to Become a CFO


A 12 Week, 18 Hour, Online, Live Coaching Program
90 Minute Weekly Interactive Coaching Sessions on Weekends
Live Interactive Audio/Visual Coaching through GotoMeeting
One Leadership Competency Covered Each Week
Participation from the Privacy of Your Home on Weekends
30Minute Private One-on-One Coaching Session with the Program Master Coach Saleem Sufi at the End of the Program
Complimentary Seat at 3-Day Live In-Person Workshop “The CFO: Becoming a Strategic Partner” in Dubai
Program Completion Certificates to be issued by the American Institute of Executive Education based in
New Jersey, United States.
Contents Overview

‘What it Takes to Become a CFO’ coaching program is built up on a research based CFO Leadership Competency Model that comprises of 3 dimensions of the CFO Leadership and 10 critical leadership competencies that are essentially required for the CFO role today.

The coaching sessions besides concepts and theory mainly focus on practical tips, techniques and tactics that experienced Finance professionals can quickly learn and jumpstart on their CFO leadership journey. It is expected that by learning and applying the knowledge gained in ‘What it Takes to Become a CFO’ Coaching Program, early to mid-career Finance professionals may accelerate their career progress with 5-10 year gain over their career lifecycle.

  • Managing Self / Emotional Intelligence
  • Personal Branding / Positioning
  • Personal Productivity


  • Communication / Presentation Skills
  • Team Building / Talent Development
  • Relationship Management
  • Service Orientation


  • Innovation / Strategic Thinking
  • Strategic Performance Management
  • Stakeholders Value Creation

The coaching sessions besides concepts and theory will mainly focus on practical tips, techniques and tactics that experienced Finance professionals can quickly learn and apply to jumpstart on their CFO leadership journey.

It is expected that by learning and applying the knowledge gained in ‘What it Takes to Become a CFO’ Coaching Program, early to mid-career Finance professionals may accelerate their career progress with 5-10 year advantage over their career lifecycle.

Coaching Methodology
Research has proved that the most effective training and coaching are based on paced learning sessions conducted over a longer period of time with reasonable intervals. Instead of covering the above program in 3 days in a row, the 12 coaching sessions with weekly frequency have been carefully designed to maximize the benefit to the participants. In addition, the weekly assignments and advance reading material significantly enhance the learning experience.
The Coach
All coaching sessions are personally taught by Saleem Sufi, Founder of MECA CFO Academy and an 18 year CFO level strategist who has been to Harvard a number of times for advanced strategy training.
12 Week Program Schedule:
Week 1


Overview: CFO Leadership Competency Model


  • New Business Model of 21st Century
  • New Role of Finance and the Demands on CFO
  • What Recruiters Look into a CFO
  • Ten CFO Leadership Competencies – An Overview
  • Where Do You Stand: A Self-Assessment


Week 2


How to Deliver More in Less Time -Personal Productivity & Self Control


  • Time Management and Productivity
  • How to Overcome Daily Fire Fighting
  • Building Your Focus Muscles
  • Developing New Habits
  • Advanced Tools for Higher Productivity


Week 3


Emotional Intelligence and Self Awareness: How to Connect with People


  • EQ verses IQ
  • Four Levels of Awareness
  • Managing Your Stress
  • Resolving Conflicts
  • How to Develop Integrity and Trust


Week 4


Personal Branding and Image Building: How to Build Your Followership


  • Discovering and Positioning Your Personal Brand
  • Your Online Presence
  • Managing Your Reputation
  • Characteristics of a Strong CFO Brand
  • How to Let Recruiters Find You on LinkedIn


Week 5


Communication and Presentation Skills: How to Become a Public Speaker


  • Why Public Speaking is a Must for CFOs
  • Challenges Faced by CFOs
  • Overcoming Your Fear
  • Presenting Numbers
  • Presenting at Workplace – A Starter’s Guide


Week 6


Leading People: Talent Management and Team Building


  • What Type of CFO You Are
  • Employee Engagement and Enablement
  • Goal Setting and Reward System
  • Work-Life Integration
  • Coaching and Mentoring


Week 7


Relationship Management: Creating Long Term Compelling Relations


  • Your Relationship with Your Boss
  • Your Relationship with Your Staff and Colleagues
  • Working with Difficult People
  • How to Develop Likeability
  • Managing Strategic Relationships


Week 8


Service Orientation: Working with Non Finance Organization


  • What service excellence means
  • Customer satisfaction
  • Finance survey
  • Leveraging cross functional teams
  • Finance champion
  • Periodic results review
  • Driving corporate initiatives


Week 9


How to Do Strategic Thinking and Create a Strategic Mindset


  • How to Understand and Improve Yourself
  • How to Understand and Improve Others
  • Comprehending Big Picture
  • How to Create a Vision
  • Expressing Your Strategic Self


Week 10


Strategic Performance Management


  • From managing financials to managing performance
  • Strategic planning and analysis
  • Business model assessment
  • KPIs and critical success factors
  • Performance reviews


Week 11


How to Create Value and Execute Strategy through Balanced Scorecard


  • What is Value
  • Value Creation Model
  • Understanding Value Creation Cycle of Your Business
  • Identifying Value Drivers through Strategy Map
  • Measuring Customer and Employee Value


Week 12


How to Manage Your Career and Wrap Up


  • Managing Your Career
  • Your Career Plan
  • Goal Setting
  • Going Forward: Coaching or Mentoring?
  • Your Next Opportunity
Contact Information

Mian Ahmad Farhan, FCA

Program Director
MECA CFO Academy

Email: maf@pacdubai.com
Office Ph: +971 4 3881701-02
Cell: +971 55 2100668

Ayesha Ahmad Khan

Marketing Manager
MECA CFO Alliance

Email:   ayesha@mecacfoalliance.com
Phone: +971 507899589


“It is the most effective and most practical CFO leadership training I have ever come across. The program contents are new and focus on building CFO Leadership skills. The program is taught with clarity and practical tips to make it easier to apply immediately.”

– Syed Khalid Noor
Country CFO, Novartis Pharma, Pakistan

“Top quality CFO leadership contents. For such a nominal fee, the program offered great value. Lots of powerful concepts and tools shared. There is no such structured program available in the market. Trainer was fantastic and the concepts were explained very clearly.”

– Mohammed Afzal
Regional Financial Controller, Chicago Bridge & Iron, UAE

“Awesome training;the best career development program in the market today.”

– Prasanna Rout
Regional Financial Controller, CH2M Hill, UAE

“The overall program was fantastic and full of insights of how one can be successful in becoming a CFO.”

– Nadeem Iftikhar
Al Batool International Trading Co. Ltd, Jeddah, KSA

“This is a very comprehensive and effective program that gives all the elements in one place which are required to be a successful professional.”

– Amberjeet Banerjee
Senior Finance Manager, Landmark Group, UAE

“Great learning experience that changed my mindset and approach to pursue my career goals.”

– Muhammad Naeem
Financial Controller, Idroesse Infrastructure, UAE

“Good program with lots of takeaways by way of tools and useful tips.”

– Ramakrishnan Ramachandran
Manager, KC International, UAE

“The program is very educational, a lot of practical lessons were shared that benefited me personally.”

– Joanne Ortuoste
Financial Accounting & Reporting Manager, T&F Tax and Finance Group, UAE

“Exhaustive practical areas for career growth kindled in short span of time for me to work upon, has been a vital and timely coaching for my career progress.”

– Biji Daniel
Vice President Finance, Food Specialties Ltd., UAE

“The program has helped me to learn tools required to do gap analysis, self-development and lead my career in a strategic way to get senior leadership role in future”

– Tauseef Irfan
Senior Consultant, PwC, New Jersey, USA

“It is the best program; no other institute or body is offering such kind of program.”

– Ashit Sanghvi
Group Financial Controller, Fikree Pipe LLC, UAE


  • Global Strategic CFO
  • Strategy Practitioner
  • Author, Speaker, & Coach

Saleem Sufi is currently the CFO of Intercos America, a global manufacturing company based in New York. He has been a CFO level Strategy and Balanced Scorecard practitioner for more than 18 years working for top world class Fortune 500 and Private Equity owned companies in Asia Pacific, Middle East, Europe and United States.

During his tenure with Philips Electronics, a Global Fortune 500 company, he successfully led and executed several strategic initiatives in Singapore, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia and Thailand involving performance management and implementation of Balanced Scorecard. Afterwards, he moved to United States and continued supporting strategic marketing efforts of Philips in North America.

In later years, he served some of the best Fortune 500 and Private Equity Companies including Wells Fargo and Carlyle, as Vice President and CFO. Lately, he has been the Head of Finance and Strategy with a large multibillion industrial group of companies in Middle East.

As an experienced speaker, corporate trainer and executive coach, Saleem has conducted numerous executive level workshops and seminars on the subjects of Finance, Strategy, Enterprise Performance Management and Balanced Scorecard in international locations including Tokyo, Singapore, Shanghai, Mumbai, Riyadh, Dubai and New York.

Saleem is an MBA with major in Strategy and Finance and a Fellow member of the Institute of Cost & Management Accountants. He has attended Harvard Business School a number of times for Executive Education where he has been trained and coached by world renowned Professors Dr. Robert Kaplan and Dr. Robert Simons on the latest practices in Strategy and Balanced Scorecard.

Saleem regularly writes a blog at www.SaleemSufi.com with a focus on ‘CFO Leadership’. His mission is to help Finance professionals grow in their career and leadership roles. His blog topics cover the subjects of Strategy, Leadership, Finance Career, and Work-Life Integration. He has also authored “25 Essential Marketing Metrics” a book published by the Institute of Business Strategy in United States.

Saleem is also the Founder and President of MECA CFO Alliance, the largest independent CFO group in Middle East region. Under the MECA umbrella, he leads CFO Mentors Network and MECA CFO Academy with an entire focus on leadership development and career growth among the senior Finance community.

Saleem is based in New York and Dubai and travels extensively around the globe. He can be reached and contacted at SaleemSufi@gmail.com

Contact Information

Mian Ahmad Farhan, FCA

Program Director
MECA CFO Academy

Email: maf@pacdubai.com
Office Ph: +971 4 3881701-02
Cell: +971 55 2100668

Saba S.

Director of Communications & PR
MECA CFO Alliance

Email: saba@mecacfoalliance.com
Phone: +971 56 201 4087


Presented By:


MECA CFO Alliance
Office 2408, Emirates Financial Towers,
Dubai International Financial Centre
PO Box 506556, Dubai, U.A.E
In Collaboration with:


66 Witherspoon Street,
Princeton, New Jersey, 08542, USA
Organized By:


Professional &
Accountancy Centre

Mezzanine Floor, M-A1,
Al-Tayar Building,
Sheikh Zayed Road – Dubai – UAE