Oftentimes, founders and CEOs assume that their main job is to deal with the finances of the company. They fixate on numbers and monetary aspects of the business and lose sight of what their role is really meant to be: the purveyor of culture. Like Nike and Apple, great brands become successful by inventing new cultures that attract a loyal following. The job of the CEO, as the head of the brand, is to keep that culture alive, consistently bring new energy, and raise the excitement within the company.
You could think of the CEO as the parent of the business. Much in the same way that parents must ensure a nurturing home for their children to grow in, a CEO must foster an environment that lends itself to creativity and productivity for the team. Motivation and positivity within the company are externally reflected in the service or product that is created, so it is absolutely essential for CEOs to always be mindful of company morale. By focusing on these matters, the CEO is directly nurturing the culture of the company and the success of the brand.
Of course, CEOs don’t work alone. Their teams play an equally important role in the progress of the brand, so communication between leaders and their team members is one of the most basic but most important tools for a business. Again, consistency and style of communication are often set by the CEOs, so it’s necessary to keep in mind that leaders should never dominate or limit communication with their teams. It’s easy to assume that being in a superior position means having the final word, but it does not mean having the only word. The best CEOs remain open-minded at all times and set clear direction but let the team make final decisions. On the other hand, CEOs who micro manage their teams resemble the type of parents who hover over their children and allow no breathing room. An essential skill and art form is the ability to truly listen and then evaluate the critical direction to head.
The CEO is responsible for the health of an organization. This means the health of the company’s culture, finances, communication, and collaboration.