4 of the biggest mistakes a CEO can make
Excerpt from the article. The full article can be viewed here.
1. Taking too long to fire a direct report
A high-functioning, cohesive executive team is critical to any CEO’s success, and therefore the company’s success. So it becomes a liability to keep a team member on board who isn’t a good fit.
Yet some CEOs will delay doing what they know in their gut they should do. Their reticence can stem from guilt because they brought the person on or they have a long history together. Or they worry that such a high-profile dismissal could raise concerns among investors and employees.
But just as often it’s their savior complex coming into play.
“CEOs convince themselves ‘I can save this person. If I just have enough time to work with them, I can turn them around,'” said Mark Nadler, principal and cofounder of leadership consulting firm Nadler Advisory Services.
2. Losing touch with front-line employees
If CEOs become insulated from middle managers and customer facing employees, they won’t have all the intelligence needed to make critical decisions.
“They’re the first to understand what’s happening in the marketplace that could be a threat to you,” Nadler said.
Plus, as companies become more decentralized, innovation often happens in the field, said Steve Morse, a senior member of the board and CEO advisory practice at Russell Reynolds Associates.
Morse recommends CEOs spend a lot of time in the field in their first 18 months. What’s more, the CEO and all team managers must actively foster an open culture that welcomes ideas and criticism from employees. And they should have a system — including surveys — by which to regularly collect and communicate that information to the corner office.