Mostly metrics
Run the Numbers
E4: The Unexpected Qualities of Great CFOs with’s Sruthi Lanka

E4: The Unexpected Qualities of Great CFOs with’s Sruthi Lanka

Sruthi Lanka (CFO of joins host CJ Gustafson to discuss the unexpected qualities of great CFOs. If you’re looking for an ERP platform, check out our sponsor, NetSuite: 



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Tropic is the next-generation Procurement Platform that’s helping modern CFOs take control of their budgets and bottom line. By combining approval workflows, supplier management, and pricing benchmarks all in one place, Tropic makes savings opportunities easy to find and act on. 🌴 Visit to learn how. 



The HR industry is at a crossroads. What will it take to construct the next generation of incredible businesses – and where can people leaders have the most business impact? Hosts Nolan Church and Kelli Dragovich have been through it all, the highs and the lows – IPOs, layoffs, executive turnover, board meetings, culture changes, and more. With a lineup of industry vets and experts, Nolan and Kelli break down the nitty-gritty details, trade offs, and dynamics of constructing high performing companies. Through unfiltered conversations that can only happen between seasoned practitioners, Kelli and Nolan dive deep into the kind of leadership-level strategy that often happens behind closed doors. Check out the first episode with the architect of Netflix’s culture deck Patty McCord.



@sruthilanka (Sruthi)

@cjgustafson222 (CJ)

@TurpentineMedia (Turpentine)



(00:00) Episode Preview: CJ’s learnings from Sruthi

(03:40) SEGMENT: CJ's opening “Off the Books” monologue - listener mailbag: where to allocate engineers who maintain infrastructure

(05:17) Start of interview: Sruthi on how a CFO and CEO partnership should look like

(09:59) How do you define important metrics for your team?

(13:03) Data ownership at

(14:36) Sponsor: Netsuite

(16:00) Sruthi's favorite frameworks for decision-making

(20:57) What separates a great CFO from a good CFO?

(24:25) Tactics on how to be more embedded in different departments within your company

(29:24) The biggest differences between a traditional SaaS CFO and CFO at

(31:33) On retention

(34:45) How to deal with situations where you are wrong

(38:15) Tactics on modeling

(39:20) On mentorship, management, giving advice

(45:31) Balancing being a mother with being CFO

(47:52) Long-ass lightning round: an example of when Sruthi screwed up on the job,’s finance software stack, the craziest thing someone has tried to expense

Mostly metrics
Run the Numbers
Run the Numbers is a twice-weekly podcast about financial metrics and business models, designed for ambitious people operating tech startups. It's a collection of things host CJ Gustafson (CFO at Partstech and writer of Mostly Metrics) has learned and thought about in the trenches as a tech CFO.
This show is meant to serve as a playbook of sorts for the stuff CJ wishes he knew earlier in his career, both from experience and from copying people smarter than himself.
Topics frequently touch upon Startup SaaS Metrics, Annual Budgeting, Financial Forecasting, Headcount, Equity, Dilution, and Fundraising – and how all of these drive business performance and growth.