How to Become an Executive
First off, I should provide a disclaimer:
Most of what I've written in this article is based on my observations of executives over almost a decade of work. I'm not condoning or recommending any of this...I'm just stating what I've observed. Therefore, I cannot guarantee that you will become an executive if you follow what's in this article.
I mention this disclaimer because I've received a number of inquiries about what people should do to become an executive. Now, on to how to become an executive....
You must wear a suit to indicate your importance. Every now and then, just to show how busy you are, loosen your tie and unbutton your top button. Sometimes even show up first thing in the morning with your tie loosened and top button unbuttoned. This shows you had a rough night working on a powerful strategy briefing or dealing with important company matters.
You must get your own parking space. This exclaims to every employee that enters or leaves your building how important you are. Plus, if you put your Title on the sign above your parking space, it reinforces your importance. It must be evident to everyone in your building that since you park closest to the front door, you are the most important person in the building. If there are handicap parking spaces as close to the building as your parking space, ensure you don’t hire anyone handicap. This may diminish your importance since a mere employee that is handicap parks as close to the front door as you, the Executive. Of course, if you are an Executive and handicap this is okay.
You must drive a vehicle representative of your power and importance. Good choices are the Chrysler 300, a BMW, or a Mercedes. Your car must be less than one year old and always appear freshly washed.
It is extremely important to make people wait for you at meetings, especially meetings that you schedule. This shows your importance and emphasizes your power. Make sure no one ever sits at the head of the table – like the parking spot, this is reserved for you, the Executive. A special chair for you is also important, as this distinguishes you from the mere employees. If you are over ten minutes late to your own meeting, it’s important to indicate that you were handling important matters for the CEO or Board or Directors. If you’re less than ten minutes late to your own meeting, no excuse is necessary. After all, how can the employees make decisions without you, the Executive?
Always use the speaker phone, especially when checking your voice mail or dialing. Nothing emphasizes your importance like the loud beeps your phone makes as you make important calls. It’s also important to leave your office door open. This ensures everyone hears how important you are by the conversations you have with other Executives and CEOs. Using the speaker phone makes a statement as well – you’re too busy to hold the phone to your ear. You need your hands free in case an important email arrives or in case the administrative assistant hands you an urgent note.
This must be a Blackberry. You must be accessible at all times and emphasize this to your employees. After all, without you, the company wouldn’t know what to do. It’s important to answer your phone at all times, even during meetings. Your employees can wait until you’re done with the call. Also, if an employee is briefing you on something during a meeting, feel free to check your email on your Blackberry. This emphasizes your importance…you don’t really have time to listen to employees. You’re too busy with emails from the CEO and other Executives.
On airplanes you must always be the last person to stop talking on your Blackberry before takeoff. This lets everyone in the plane know your importance. Also, be the first one to make a call to your administrative assistant the minute you land. Be very loud with your conversation – let her know you’ve just landed and are taxiing to the gate. Also, be sure and ask for your important messages, since you’re bound to have so many, since you're the Executive.
You’re the Executive and make it clear that the other people in your organization are just employees. It’s important to forget their names. In meetings describe how you don’t like certain employees because they didn’t hold the door open for you or address you as “sir”. Never mention their name; because you don’t know it…you have too many far more important things to remember. Afterall, you're the Executive.
As an Executive, you deserve the best. Do not allow any hotel to put you up in a standard room. You need the upgraded Executive suite. If a hotel attempts to discredit your title, you must let them know that you are an Executive and deserve the best. Tell the front desk manager that if you are not treated with the respect your title warrants, you will be forced to speak with your counterpart – her Executive.