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#313: The 6 mindsets that distinguish the best from the rest
You want to be an excellent CEO, do you have what it takes?
Are you a new CEO that wants to excel in his position? Are you stuck in neutral and can’t seem to get the team energized? This is a short list of the 6-mindsets you need to develop to pull away from the pack.
Setting the direction for the company
We have written about it in various ways, and this is the most important. What is your vision and strategy for the organization, and how will you allocate resources? When we speak about vision, it is your view of how you want the company to look, act, and be thought of by your stakeholders.
Vision and mission can be interchangeable to many, but the main thing is that they should be apparent to those that have to execute them.
Aligning the organization
Seventy-two percent of business failures can be attributed to problems related to staff and company culture. This can be dangerous when the staff doesn’t believe in the vision, and you don’t have their buy-in. John C Maxwell referred to this in his 21 Irrefutable Laws as the Law of the Buy-in.
Not only do you need to gain the team’s support, but it must be addressed when you see someone operating outside of your vision, regardless of their qualifications. Otherwise, you and your vision are in jeopardy when others see this.
Mobilizing the executive team
Be fair but fast in weeding out low performers.
If Piyush Gupta, CEO of the DBS Group, feels that a struggling exec has a 75% chance of pulling it together, he’ll put in the effort to support them. Below that, the odds of an improvement are too small, and he’ll let them go. This is the threshold he uses in making the determination. You can choose what works best for you. And, of course, as part of your responsibility as a role model, handle any terminations with grace and compassion.
You can get to know employees below you at one, two, or even three levels.
It’s not enough to only be familiar with your top executive team. Getting to know the folks a few tiers below is essential for the top CEOs. Brad Smith at Intuit invites the top 400 managers to listen in to his meetings with his 12 direct reports. That way, they can learn the reasons behind decisions and the priorities right from the point the decisions are made.
Don’t let trivial topics take over the agenda of your management team.
The “law of triviality” describes how people tend to devote the most discussion in meetings to the issues with the least importance or impact. The authors share the example of an executive team tasked with three decisions and CEO Excellence.
Working effectively with the board
Even as CEO, you must answer to someone, which is your board of directors. You need to have their buy-in and support and utilize their expertise in tackling the big problems. They can do this by helping create and craft adaptations in the vision so that they can share in future successes.
A good board has connections outside your organization that can aid your growth. For example, they may be familiar with financial institutions or nonprofits you'd like to deal with. Or, they may be able to introduce you to new technology companies. Boards can be influential; they do not have to be figureheads. And the more you have them play in your sandbox, the more effective you will be.
Engaging with stakeholders
In the 1980s, MBA programs taught you that you have one priority: stockholders. And, you should maxims value to keep them h’ to keep them happy. Well, things have changed. Typical stakeholders include investors, employees, customers, suppliers, communities, governments, and trade associations.
As we recommend in point five, you will also need to work effectively with these groups. They can become your vision carriers or vision breakers! Happy employees and a fully engaged team increase customer satisfaction, driving revenue and profits. Motivated suppliers can bring you ideas on using their products and services that can lower costs and increase margins. If your investors are vision carriers, they can broaden your marketing reach. Understanding and utilizing your stakeholders is imperative to long-term growth and sustainability.
Managing their effectiveness and productivity
As a leader, 85% of our efforts are people-oriented. Think about the five mindsets above. They all revolve around people and how to engage, motivate, and enlighten them. To be the most effective, your development time should be spent working on skills that help you do that!
If you have difficulties with vision, motivation, engagement, and communication, maybe it’s time to work on that! That’s what we do at the Kole Performance Group. We work hard today to improve your tomorrow!
Schedule an appointment today to learn how to become a more effective leader!
Sources: CEO Excellence The Six Mindsets That Distinguish the Best Leaders from the Rest By Carolyn Dewar, Scott Keller & Vikram Malhotra