Monday, November 24th, 2014


If you are a striving person, you like competition, you like:
to win, you enjoy power you don’t mind extreme accountability, you like status
you are driven by recognition for your work.
Then it is quite natural that you want the top job.

If, however, you want to cause large change, you want time to think to reach good decisions, you enjoy collaboration, you want positive impact, you want to be pro-active not reactive, you want to do the right thing for the business—-then maybe you don’t really want the top job.  

The CEO role or any other of ultimate accountability is incredibly constrained, unbelievably powerless, burdened by the weight of the enterprise and 
the chief decision maker of decisions that “suck less”.  

Hard to believe?  Ask a CEO how able she or he is to make something happen,
to make the right thing happen, to think about what is the right thing to happen.  I remember one CEO I worked with who laughed and said, “I feel like I’m on a slow moving elephant heading toward a cliff guiding it with a feather switch”.  

There can be much more power and flexibility and satisfaction in a number two role. You can speak more freely, act more creatively, rock the boat more
effectively and collaborate easily.  A number two person or team  has the right balance of freedom and power to truly function.

I’m saying, “THE CEO ROLE ISN’T ALL IT’S CRACKED UP TO BE”.  Don’t be blinded by the status, the perks, the office, the salary if you like quite a bit of intrinsic satisfaction.  I’m just saying—- think twice before you reject a number two position and don’t be surprised if becoming CEO, you think to yourself, “What just happened to me?”


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