3 steps to thinking like a CEO

7th April, 2016

When we start our small business, we are the jack-of-all-trades: the marketer, operations manager, financial controller and all other business management roles – not to mention the tea lady.

One of the biggest problems with running our business is that we get stuck in working in the business and not on the business.

Of course we know that successful big businesses have lots of people doing various roles. These employees are overseen by a Chief Executive Officer (CEO) who looks at the big picture to direct strategy for the success of the business.

Now is the time to start thinking like a CEO to drive your business further and build your success.

So what do CEOs do?

While they are responsible for the day-to-day operations of the business, they are the ultimate decision maker, implementer and leader.

Let’s take a look at some of the key roles CEOs play in the success of business to find out how you can take on the role of CEO in your business.

1. Strategise

Setting strategy involves identifying what business success looks like and implementing action plans that are achievable within set timeframes.

If you don’t have a roadmap for your business, then you could be taking the long way around to success. It is very easy to get distracted on the day-to-day without thinking about if these activities are leading your business to the ultimate destination.

Make planning a priority. At least twice a year take time away from the business to set up measurable goals for your business, which will ensure you are taking the right path to success.

Don’t forget to include your employees in your strategy sessions; often they have great ideas for your business.

2. Delegate

Once you have your strategy set, assign action items to your employees to ensure that every activity in your business is directed to achieving the business goals.

To provide incentives to your employees, build these deliverables into their job descriptions and remunerate accordingly once achieved. Hold regular meetings to keep accountability for action items and check that results are meeting the goals you set.

If you don’t have staff, then think about outsourcing. It will be more cost effective for you to use your time on business strategy that drives profitability and success than sitting at a desk entering invoices in your financial system.

Do the things in your business that you are good at, and delegate all other activities – you will be surprised how much time and money is saved in the long run.

3. Lead

The success of great CEOs is all about their ability to lead the team. You need to have strong communication and management skills to deal with the variety of stakeholders to the business, from employees to customers, financiers and all others involved in the business.

Take control, lead by example, and steer everyone on the same path to success. Remember, it is your business, and you are the one who is ultimately responsible for driving it forward.