Finance and Accounting for the Nonfinancial Executive

Dec 6–10, 2021 $6,950 (Live Online)
Mar 7–11, 2022 $6,950 (Live Online)
Questions? Contact Us:
Alberto O. Cruz
Director, Learning Solutions
+1 212-854-6037
[email protected]

Format: Five consecutive daily live sessions from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. ET. View the live online schedule.
Certificate Credits: 5
Learn more.
Preferred pricing is available for groups of two or more. To inquire, email [email protected].

"The Finance and Accounting for the Nonfinancial Executive program was an excellent offering with the right balance of classroom instruction and appropriately challenging content. The impressive set of professors presented expert direction, discipline, and knowledge that will undoubtedly be applicable in any executive's day-to-day profession."
– Past Participant Matthew Whalen, SVP and Chief Technology Officer at GTECH

Faculty director Doron Nissim introduces the program.

In five days of hands-on, interactive sessions, Finance and Accounting for the Nonfinancial Executive provides you with a unique opportunity to deepen your expertise of finance and accounting for better management and decision-making capabilities.

The program features sessions on the role of accounting, key concepts of managerial and financial accounting, ratio calculation, forecasting and valuation, and shareholder value management.

At the end of the program, you will have mastered key finance and accounting concepts and understand the relationships among profitability, cash flow, liquidity, solvency, and growth, and identify the red flags in financial statements – highly important in the current volatile financial context.

For a complete program schedule download the agenda.

Are You Ready to Take the Next Step?

Do you already have a solid understanding of financial statements, revenue and expense recognition, and asset and liability measurement but are looking for tools to evaluate the financial consequences of operating, investing, and financing decisions? Our Financial Analysis and Valuation for Strategic Decision Making program might better meet your needs.

Please Contact Us

Please contact our Learning Solutions Specialists at 212-854-3395 for a personal conversation to learn more.


Finance and Accounting for the Nonfinancial Executive blends broad financial principles with practical applications.

How You Will Benefit in the Current Context
Participants report appreciating the thoroughness of the program: rigorous, but rewarding. The personal attention participants receive from faculty brings concepts into clearer focus more readily and helps participants quickly gain confidence in their new finance and accounting skills.

Summary of Benefits

  • Understand accounting's role in business and master the language of accounting
  • Learn and apply key concepts of managerial and financial accounting
  • Calculate ratios and develop a sound ratio analysis
  • Develop forecasts and conduct valuation analysis
  • Apply finance and accounting concepts to shareholder value management
  • Identify red flags in financial statements

Upon completion of this program, you will earn five credits towards a Certificate with select alumni and tuition benefits. Learn more.


PLEASE NOTE: The upcoming iteration of this program will take place in a live, virtual setting. See the agenda. You may also view the in-person program schedule for when our in-person programming resumes.

Topics covered during the program are:

Part 1: Introduction to financial accounting

The economic and institutional setting for financial reporting

  • What is financial accounting?
  • Objectives, products and uses of financial accounting
  • The rule setting process: U.S. and internationally


  • Accounting entity
  • Going concern
  • Monetary
  • Periodicity


  • Estimates
  • Materiality
  • Consistency
  • Conservatism

Accrual accounting

  • The accounting equation
  • Asset and liability recognition and measurement
  • Revenue recognition
  • Expense recognition
  • Articulation
  • Transaction analysis

Part 2: Financial reporting

Understanding financial statements

  • Balance sheet
  • Income statement
  • Statement of cash flows
  • Secondary financial statements: comprehensive income and shareholders’ equity

Accounting quality – implications of

  • Accounting conservatism
  • Choices, judgements, estimates and incentives

Part 3: Financial planning and analysis

Managerial Accounting

  • Costing
  • Pricing
  • Budgeting
  • Variance analysis
  • Performance measurement

Integrating financial and managerial accounting

Mastering net present value (NPV) calculations

Part 4: Financial statement analysis

Reformulating the financial statements (F/S)

  • Operating versus financing activities
  • Recurring versus transitory items

Conducting ratio analysis

  • Profitability
  • Earnings quality
  • Solvency
  • Liquidity
  • Working capital

Part 5: Forecasting and valuation

Relative valuation

  • P/E
  • P/B

Forecasting financial statements

  • Revenue
  • Key ratios
  • Free cash flow

Cost of capital

  • Cost of debt
  • Cost of equity
  • WACC

Fundamental valuation

  • Models
  • Implementation


Finance and Accounting for the Nonfinancial Executive is designed for midlevel to senior-level executives with five or more years of experience in corporate or divisional roles who seek a deeper understanding of finance and accounting.

The program is well suited for those in creative or technical fields and can also serve as a refresher for executives with some knowledge of finance and accounting.

Columbia Business School alumni and up to four of their colleagues are eligible for a 25 percent tuition benefit for this program. More on the Alumni Tuition Benefit.

Typical Participant Mix

Geographic Spread

Years of Management Experience

Job Function



Hear from Past Participants:



Doron Nissim, Faculty Director
Ernst & Young Professor of Accounting & Finance

Professor Nissim earned his PhD in Accounting at the University of California, Berkeley, and joined Columbia Business School in 1997. He was granted tenure in 2005, and full professorship in 2007. He served as the Chair of the Accounting Division during the years 2006-2009 and 2014-2016.

Professor Nissim’s research is primarily in the areas of earnings quality, fundamental analysis, equity valuation, financial institutions, and corporate finance. His studies have been published in such internationally acclaimed accounting and finance journals as the Journal of Finance, the Journal of Accounting Research, the Accounting Review, the Review of Accounting Studies, Contemporary Accounting Research, and Journal of Banking and Finance, as well as in practitioner-oriented journals such as the Financial Analysts Journal and The Journal of Financial Perspectives. Professor Nissim’s research is frequently cited in the popular press, including The Wall Street Journal, Time, The New York Times, Bloomberg, Chief Executive Magazine, The Economist, and the International Herald Tribune. Professor Nissim served as an editor of the Review of Accounting Studies from 2006 to 2013, and as the director of The Initiative on Banking and Insurance in the Program for Financial Studies at Columbia Business School from 2015 to 2017.

At Columbia Business School, Professor Nissim teaches MBA, EMBA, MS, and PhD courses in financial accounting, earnings quality, fundamental analyses, valuation, investment management, financial institutions, and research methods. He also serves as the director of three executive education programs — Financial Analysis and Valuation, Finance and Accounting for the Non-financial Executive, and Finance and Accounting for New York Presbyterian Hospital — and he teaches in several other open enrollment and custom executive education programs.

Professor Nissim consults extensively, both to buy- and sell-side firms as well as to other entities. His consulting focuses on equity valuation, fundamental analysis, earnings quality, investment management, and financial institutions.

Professor Nissim has received several honors and awards, including a prize from the Financial Executive Research Foundation for “the article from those published in the Accounting Review, which had the greatest import for users and preparers of financial reports;” Morgan Stanley Award for Contributions to the Development of ModelWare Core Strategies; two nominations for the Brattle Prize at the Journal of Finance (outstanding paper in corporate finance); and two teaching awards: Columbia Business School Dean’s Award for Teaching Excellence in a Core Course, and Columbia Business School Dean’s Award for Teaching Excellence.

Along with Professor Nissim, additional Columbia Business School faculty may contribute to and teach in the program.


Do you have questions about our live online programs? Please review our commonly asked questions on our live online programs FAQs page.