In the collision repair business, the daily responsibilities of the CEO or business leader can vary greatly depending on the size of the organization, but there are several responsibilities that should always be a constant for a CEO regardless of the size of the company. Proper delegation is also a part of life for successful CEOs, but these four constants should never be delegated.
The Four Constant Responsibilities of Great CEOs
1. Building the executive team – The CEO is responsible for building his executive team with the right people that will support the company vision. The team may be responsible for hiring and firing, but it is the CEOs job to build the leadership team and to give them all the support they need to be successful.
2. Sharing the vision – All successful companies have a leader that carries the flag and leads his team towards a future vision of the company. All cultures begin by understanding why the company exists and where they are going. A great CEO will paint this picture for the entire organization by talking about the vision every day.
3. Strategy – It may be up to the team to make decisions on the day to day tactics used to carry out a long term strategy, but it is the responsibility of the CEO to create high-level strategies that will support the company vision and values.
4. Company culture – The thing about culture is that every company has one either good or bad. The hard truth is that the culture is a direct reflection of the attitude and characteristics of the CEO. If you as a leader are unhappy with the culture at your business, take a look in the mirror to reveal the problem!
Four Character Traits of Great CEOs
1. Empathy – The best CEOs genuinely care about their people and seeks to understand them.
2. Ethical integrity – The best CEOs act in accordance with the company values no matter how difficult it may become. A great leader never compromises the trust of the entire organization by acting any differently than the leader would expect of his team.
3. Curiosity – Leaders that are naturally curious tend to always be looking for things they can use to gain a competitive advantage. Whether it is a new piece of equipment, technical technique, or influence skill, A great CEO is always on the lookout and eager to learn new things.
4. Competitive drive – While some CEOs you meet may not always show an outward competitive nature, inside there is almost always a fire burning to dominate! Most successful CEOs are highly competitive and want to win.
“A leader without a title is better than a title without the ability to lead” – Simon Sinek
Leadership is a Learned Skill
While there are certain characteristics that may come natural to some leaders, many of the skills required and even the character traits can be learned, practiced, and mastered. Even those that are not in the position of CEO can become a great leader. Leadership is a lot more than a title! In fact, most of what I learned about leadership was from jobs where no-one reported directly to me. I had to learn influence skills that would create positive change without being anyone’s boss. The best leaders, and CEOs understand this and do not rely solely on their position as the boss to get people to perform. While learning a lot on the job, much of what I have learned and teach today is what I learned from reading books. My philosophy is to learn as much as I possibly can from reading books and then experiment with the knowledge in the business and on the shop floor.
Anyone that is interested in learning more about obtaining leadership skills or if you would simply like some book recommendations, I would love to hear from you....
Dave Luehr – firstname.lastname@example.org