Learn to Speak the Language of ROI

by John O’Leary

Nobody is getting approval to spend money these days unless he or she can demonstrate an economic return. And so nonfinancial professionals are having to master the mysterious lexicon of return on investment (ROI), which includes terms such as breakeven, internal rate of return, and discounted cash flow.

These concepts should be second nature for anyone charged with making or contributing to financial decisions. But in too many companies, it’s only the finance mavens who really understand ROI.

Say you want to spend $200,000 on a new automated call system. You’re jazzed up about how reducing wait times from 60 seconds to 30 seconds will boost customer satisfaction and loyalty. As important as ...

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