Chief tax officers describe the skills required of future tax leaders
Katrina Welch, Vice President and Tax Director, Texas Instruments: Many of the skills that have always been required are still much needed. You still need technical competence, you still need soft skills and being able to work with other people. The new challenge is the technology. Now people need to be more open to technology, be able to embrace technology, and be able to work more seamlessly around the globe.
Colin Seegmiller, Vice President, Global Tax, Amway: At the entry level, the skills are still the same, although you need to have a much better handle on packages and analyzing.
As you move up in the organization, I believe the skill set changes. It becomes very important to be able to manage and monitor several projects, and communication becomes of utmost importance. Being able to communicate and knowing when to communicate. These skills are the types of skills that are required to be able to move forward.
I’m watching new people come into the field and into the industry, and there’s a lot of interest. Young people are very interested in how things work. They look at things differently, they look at it from a different perspective. It’s fun to watch that perspective, bring it into play and use it to accomplish things. A lot of times looking at something the same way over and over gets tired. And this new generation comes in and they don’t look at it the same way. They look at it very differently.
Donna Cote, Corporate Vice President, Tax, AECOM: In general, tax people need to have really good communication skills. You have to be technically competent, I think that will always be around. I think that now with all the technology, it is going to be really important for you to have the technology skills to be able to run the new software’s of the future. But communication, I still think, is the number one thing a tax person needs to have to be successful.
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