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Thursday, January 29, 2009
Your Role as a CEO, what do you do
What does the CEO actually do?
The key elements that make up the CEO's responsibilities are: governance, strategy, policy, and mapping the changing world; managed in a way that supports the sustainability of the organisation.
In bringing together policy, strategy and external mapping, the CEO can ensure the company is being managed in a responsible manner appropriate to internal demands and also in line with external requirements (e.g. legislation, reporting) and best practice.
The strategy will be derived from the vision, mission and objective for the organisation (part of the role of the Chairman), which ensures the CEO and Chairman work closely together to plan the business; drawing the various strands [finance, market and people.] into a properly developed, sequenced and interlinked format for a sound management process.
Policies are the overriding courses of action the organisation will adopt to gain maximum benefit even in changing external circumstances, and include internal codes of management. These are not set in stone and, given sufficient reason, may be subject to review and change within set parameters.
Policy guides operations, but is not a substitute; it is more an advisor to intelligent management and risk mitigation and reputation management.
The policies will be clearly articulated to allow external people acting as advisors to challenge and support management with knowledge and confidence, and by so doing help the organisation maintain its focus, even in changing circumstances.
Mapping the changing world
There is an intermediate position in management between strategy and tactics. It may be termed Intelligent Management recognising that the majority of management decisions are focused two weeks to six months ahead.
The core management and decision-making process can be significantly enhanced by regularly introducing understanding and nuances from outside the organisation and from similar organisations and markets (often by the involvement of the non-executives). By sharing this with the MD, tactics will be strengthened and operations better guided.
Supporting and being supported
The CEO links to the Chairman, supporting the vision and ensuring shareholder expectations are met in a way compliant with good governance, the other key link is to the Managing Director to ensure the actions of today are appropriate to the needs of tomorrow.
The Non-executive Directors can be very supportive by listening out for what is happening elsewhere, monitoring the continual changes in the external environment and reviewing the company's standing in the market place