Leading through change amid AI and remote work
In this episode of Controllers Classified, Brex’s CAO Erik Zhou dives deep into the evolution of accounting and finance with guest Ron Cook, the VP/Controller at Lightcast. Ron shares invaluable insights from his illustrious 30-year career on the past, present, and future states of accounting, on-the-job anecdotes (ever migrated ERPs in the middle of a pandemic?), and lessons learned along the way (“Leadership is an art. It’s not a science.”).
Erik and Ron also explore the transformative impact of remote work culture on the accounting profession, delving into its challenges, benefits, and opportunities. The conversation pivots to AI and automation as Ron sheds light on where he thinks AI can have the most accounting impact — and what he thinks AI cannot do. He also shares his top skill for managing people and the one line on a job candidate’s resume that still stands out today.
Intro/Journey to success [01:35]
How Ron went from analog accounting to the digital world of accounting today [4:39]
When to use AI and understanding its limitations for accounting [17:10]
Advice and tips during large scale ERP implementations [23:45]
Ron's craziest accounting debacle [31:03]
Ron Cook, VP/Controller at Lightcast
Ron Cook is a senior financial executive with over 25 years of corporate experience including all aspects of CFO/Controller and financial reporting responsibilities. Throughout his career, Ronald has excelled in areas of oversight including: daily accounting activities, internal controls/processes, data management, FP&A, KPI management/strategy, systems implementations, and review.