Become a CEO of Whatever You Wish

Become a CEO of Whatever You Wish

Whether you think in terms of climbing a conventional career ladder to the top or recognize that becoming and being a CEO works metaphorically in many contexts, this is for you.  Man or woman, the ideas here can relate to leading or influencing anything, including yourself. Maybe you’d apply them to family, community, groups, businesses, professional firms, nonprofits, government, or other efforts.

I was inspired to think more broadly about effective CEOs while reading an interview with the head of Korn/Ferry International, the world’s largest executive search firm. When Wall Street Journal interviewer, Lauren Weber, asked Gary Burnison about their focus for choosing candidates, he said “the No. 1 predictor of executive success is learning agility.” He mentioned that thinking and leadership styles are part of this. How relevant these generalities are to many situations! For details, please see the Wall Street Journal article.

Now, imagine seeing yourself as the leader of any entity or situation that means something to you. What do you need and want to learn to be effective? What would be fun and useful for your vision as well as the hopes of the people you inspire, whether you’re formally in charge or not? Are you shepherding a process, project, or idea? Perhaps you have an entrepreneurial spirit and you’re starting or collaborating on something new.

Wherever you are, consider starting with you own interests and what engages you to provide the music for your motivation. Name two of the most appealing ones. How do they complement or mesh with what’s important to others in your situation?

Also think about how everyone’s values connect. If there are some significant gaps, either clarify them in conversation or assess how they might be barriers to progress.

Another important matter is how everyone’s capacities match a chosen purpose. Are they complementary or all in the same vein? Is there enough difference to spark creativity or such similarity that the benefits of a diverse group would be lost? What learning or development efforts could fill in what’s missing?

Perhaps map out a simple plan related to agreed-upon learning opportunities and purpose. As beneficial, include what, when, where, how, why, and with whom.

Since the average tenure of CEOs today is about five years, time counts as well. Whatever your perch, having a time bound frame for action can be a catalyst for creativity; it also provides focus for meeting goals you and others choose.

Now all this is quite rational — maybe too much so. In today’s world, though, individuals and environments usually stay in flux. They can be quirky and dynamic. The best laid plans can be upset which is not always a bad thing. So anticipate and influence the changes, if possible. Be alert and ready to convert surprises to adventures that hold new possibilities.

To move forward, choose one suggestion from this blog that’s engaging and manageable. Then follow through within the next week to promote momentum and start seeing results.  Contact Ruth for a related guide.


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