October 23, 2023 – John Moon, Marissa Conforti, and Marc Gasperino of global CEO advisory and executive search firm Teneo has placed Richard Westenberg as vice president and chief financial officer of NYSE-traded Masco Corporation in Livonia, MI. “I am very pleased to welcome Rick to Masco’s leadership team,” said Keith Allman, president and CEO of Masco. “Rick is a strategic, accomplished leader with extensive financial and operational experience. His demonstrated excellence in leading diverse international teams and driving results in a global manufacturing business will be extraordinarily valuable to us as we continue to build upon our strong financial and operational foundation and deliver long-term value for our shareholders.”
Mr. Westenberg is a seasoned executive who brings to Masco over 25 years of experience, including nearly 15 years leading global finance organizations. Most recently, he served as VP and CFO of General Motors North America, overseeing the financial management and financial performance of this approximately $125 billion segment, and leading a team across the U.S., Canada and Mexico.
Prior to that, Mr. Westenberg served as VP of finance and CFO of SAIC-General Motors, GM’s approximately $30 billion joint venture in China, with responsibility as a member of the executive committee for the key operational and strategic decisions of the joint venture. He held roles of increasing responsibility during his tenure at GM, including as the corporate treasurer and head of corporate financial planning and analysis.
Masco Corporation is a global leader in the design, manufacture and distribution of branded home improvement and building products. Its portfolio of brands includes Behr paint; Delta and hansgrohe faucets, bath and shower fixtures; Kichler decorative and outdoor lighting; and HotSpring spas.
Teneo offers a full range of advisory services includes strategic communications, investor relations, financial transactions and restructuring, management consulting, physical and cyber risk, organizational design, board and executive search, geopolitics and government affairs, corporate governance, ESG, and DEI. The firm has more than 1,500 employees located in 40 offices around the world.
Mr. Moon is a managing director with the people advisory business at Teneo. He has more than 20 years of experience as a senior talent and human resources executive within both retained executive search firms and Fortune 500 companies. Mr. Moon has led human capital initiatives across a global footprint and has completed hundreds of C-Suite and executive-level searches. His areas of expertise include human capital, CHRO, Industrial, C-suite, and executive leadership. Prior to Teneo, Mr. Moon was a principal at ZRG Partners in the industrial and human capital practices.
Ms. Conforti is a vice president with Teneo’s people advisory business. She has spent close to a decade supporting global digital practices at CTPartners, Korn Ferry, and most recently ON Partners. Ms. Conforti started her search career as a project coordinator and transitioned to research and then recruiting where she helped place C-level digital and technology executives across all global markets.
Mr. Gasperino counsels Teneo’s clients in areas including: CEO advisory, digital innovation and strategy, executive search and retention, leadership development, C-suite succession, board effectiveness, and succession planning. He joined Teneo with over 20 years of executive search and talent advisory experience. Mr. Gasperino has recruited board, C-level, and transformational roles. Prior to Teneo, he was at ON Partners after previously building and leading global digital practices for Korn Ferry and CTPartners.
CFO Confidence Crisis
Few roles are as important as the chief financial officer at most companies, but the CFOs of today who are thinking about tomorrow are growing nervous about a key talent issue: They worry that no one else in the company can assume their role. Indeed, according to one Korn Ferry study, 81 percent of CFOs surveyed say they want to groom the next CFO internally, but don’t believe that there’s a viable candidate in-house. Currently, about half of new roles are filled internally.
“The current CFO is the one charged with identifying and developing that talent, and since they know best the skills required to meet what’s coming, they are realizing the internal bench isn’t fully prepared,” said Bryan Proctor, senior client partner and global financial officers practice lead at Korn Ferry.
The lack of confidence is owed in part to CFOs feeling that their firms’ leadership development programs have failed to keep up with the rapidly changing role of CFO, Korn Ferry said. Core functions such as finance and accounting are increasingly being combined under one role, with CFOs citing a lack of resources or skills and career development opportunities as reasons for the merging. Korn Ferry surveyed more than 700 CFOs worldwide, asking them about their own internal talent pipelines. The top two abilities CFOs feel their direct reports need to develop are “leadership skills and executive presence” and “strategic thinking.”
“The tapestry of skills and experiences CFOs of today and tomorrow need are vastly different than what was needed in the past,” said John Petzold, senior client partner and CXO optimization lead at Korn Ferry. “The reason subfunctions are merging is because the focus is less on a role or person and more about the capabilities that need to be covered by a set of individuals.”
In essence, the CFO function is being deconstructed for optimization, according to Korn Ferry. Leaders are breaking down necessary functions based on their organization’s strategy and identifying people with a combination of those skills and piecing them together to get the right set of talent to execute against that plan. Core financial functions such as taxes, capital allocation, and M&A still need to be done accurately and in compliance with regulations, of course. But experts say the CFO role is becoming more about adapting and deploying talent in the most efficient manner possible.
“The leadership profile of the future CFO is less about tactical, direct experience, and more about learning agility, adaptability, and big-picture global perspective,” said Mr. Proctor. “That kind of nimbleness and ability to pivot isn’t naturally engrained in the typical CPA.”
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; and Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media