If you are running a business, you should not assume that everything will always be great. While the CEO needs to bring a high level of optimism to the job on a daily basis, the responsibility of being the chief executive requires you to always have your guard up. With that in mind, it is important to always question performance: your own, your senior team’s, and that of the organization as a whole.
Here is a useful list of questions that CEOs and managers should keep top of mind as they drive their business forward:
Why are we in this business, and why are we approaching it this way? That is a big question. You should not change the answer too frequently. However, you should be asking it all the time, just to make sure you are thinking about the path you are on.
Specifically, who are the right people to get the job done today, and to take our business into the future? It seems that all companies say that their people are the greatest asset. As Jim Collins wrote in Good to Great, one of the keys to being a great company is to get “the right people on the bus, the wrong people off the bus, and the right people in the right seats.” It is important to realize that the right people yesterday might not be the right people for the future. Of course, that does not mean you should have a revolving door on the office; constant change can inhibit progress.
What should we do next? What should we stop doing? Many executives will not take the time to stop and question whether “business as usual” is the smartest path forward. Asking these questions will help you to see things from that angle.
If you can figure out what you should be doing, the next question is how are we going to do it? How can we keep moving forward and winning the day? How are we going to go from good to great?
Importantly, these questions are not meant to spur action; they are meant to spur contemplation. As the head of the business, you need to make sure you are always considering where the business is, and where it is headed. The smart executive is constantly thinking about the organization’s place in the market, but is confident enough to know that you cannot follow every trend.
Contact us at 215.441.4600 if you have questions or would like to discuss how this topic may impact your business.
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