I think most of you know I’m a Vistage member. My Chair was here on Friday for our monthly one-to-one meeting. During that meeting he said to me, “It’s time for you to stop being an entrepreneur and become a level 5 CEO.”
As is natural for me, I internalized his comments and have been thinking about it since then. What does a level 5 CEO mean? What kinds of traits, skills, and knowledge do I need to become a leve 5 CEO? Do I need to be a Jack Welch or Steve Jobs? If yes, what does that look like? Beside Bill Gates and Michael Dell, who are some great level 5 CEOs? And what makes them so?
These are all of the questions I asked myself this morning as I rode 30 miles alone.
And, I’m really nowhere near the answer, but this is what I think right now:
* Surround myself with super smart people
* Let the super smart people with whom I already work to do their jobs and then some
* Stop feeling guilty about delegating
* Give up control
* Coach, coach, coach…and don’t get flustered or frustrated when someone doesn’t “get” it initially
* Hire slowly…and spend a lot of time making the decision to be sure everyone fits our culture and is willing to drink the vision kool-aid
* Stop doing things that don’t make the company money
* Stop feeling guilty for arriving to work 15 minutes late on the mornings that I have long rides
* Lead and inspire people by leading by example, even when I’m not talking
* Develop and grow people to take over my job someday
* Spend time daily thinking, being creative, and reading
* Spend more time outside of the office marketing the firm and being our own brand ambassador
* Make it rain every day!
* Communicate the vision every day
* Hold people accountable
* Position the company for organic growth and client retention
What else would you add to this list? What does it take to be a level 5 CEO?