Focus on This, and You Will Succeed
As a young CEO, you are certain to be overwhelmed with advice from all directions. Well meaning people and wannabe mentors will shovel “knowledge” in your direction day and night. It will get tiresome fast, but you can’t allow yourself to be put on an island, disaffected and deaf to good advice when it comes your way.
There’s a better response. In fact, it’s a strategy vital to your success. You need to focus on these things, and you can expect to build success, regardless of all the voices.
Resource your people properly. If they say they need it, get it…or be prepared to suffer the lost or slowed productivity. I get it, you might be worried about if they really need it. You think, if you let your people determine resource needs, they will choose poorly. Here’s the thing…you trust your people, right? Do you have the right people in the right positions? If so, then you need to trust them to make the right decisions. The flip side of that trust is that they must own those decisions. If they ask for something, and it’s wasteful or problematic, they need to own that. The benefit of this philosophy is that it teaches your people you trust them and that you will hold them accountable … and you never have to say a word about either.
Be the vision. Don’t just lead, you need to inspire others to catch and carry the vision. CEO is as much revival preacher as it is stoic caretaker. You need to have and share big ideas. And you need to be able to communicate these ideas in a way that inspires people to get on board … and you need to do it in a way that makes it easy for your people to share that vision with others. They need to know what you and your brand are all about and live that out every day. If what you want to do doesn’t support your vision, don’t do it. And if an opportunity comes along that will take away rather than support that vision, that opportunity probably belongs to someone else.
Don’t make cheap decisions. It would be easy here to just say “don’t be an idiot” but that’s too vague. The core of your position is about making good decisions. This means weighing and pondering and studying decisions before you make them. Sometimes you will be forced to make quick decisions. You better have a strong and well-developed system for making the right ones, or you will watch snap decisions destroy years of hard work.
Finally, refuse to lose your edge. Don’t sit back and wait on opportunities to come. Work aggressively to set yourself up for opportunity and go after them with the same enthusiasm and excitement you had on day one. Never lose that light and motivation … it’s contagious either way.
Jonah Engler is a financial expert from NYC.