Friday, February 8, 2008

CEO Leadership – Holding solid despite chaos

“…And the rockets’ red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there…”

We generally sing right through this part of our national anthem as we wait for the game to start. That is unfortunate because there is a message there not just for Americans but for CEOs. We, CEOs are the ones that have to hold steady despite the chaos all around us. The entire organization has their collective eyes on us like we do on the flag as we sing. Their reaction and action is going to be dictated by the CEO’s. Undirected action is going to make everything worse. So a clear head and a plan that had been put in place before the pressure moment is critical.

If you can keep your head when all about youAre losing theirs and blaming it on you, …”
Rudyard Kipling

Doesn’t this hit home for the CEO. The credit gets shared and blame is generally singular and it is CEO directed. But “that’s why they pay us the big bucks.” It is also why the lifespan of the CEO is getting dramatically shorter.

CEOs hate surprises because good or bad they mean unexpected action needs to be taken. Look at the problems that Yahoo is having now with the Microsoft offer. Again, having a game plan laid out and in place is critical. It enables not only the right action instead of a reaction but also speed in executing it. The plan had better be clear and at your finger tips. I see so many companies that either don’t have a plan or it is so complex that it just sleeps on the shelf in its large but expensive binder.

Did you work through the Business Acceleration Scorecard in the last post?

Do you have the plan in place?

Is it the right plan?

If the answer to any of these questions is no, be prepared to not only lose your “flag” but also your head.

Call me. I’m the guy companies call when they are tired of struggling through chaos or unexpected events and need a guide to show them the way ahead to their goals.


John Maver
Maver Management Group
(925) 648-7561
Maver Management

View John Maver's profile on LinkedIn

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