What does it mean to be CEO-ready? How can candidates know when they’re ready? How can boards know a candidate is ready for the top slot?
Some key things candidates should have if they’re really ready to lead an organization include a deep understanding of cross-functional leadership, solid knowledge of the business and how to work with people; and experience with effective board governance, explains Deedee Myers, Ph.D., MSC, PCC, president/CEO of DDJ Myers Inc., a CUESolutions provider based in Phoenix.
“Cultivation (of a CEO) … is not an overnight phenomenon,” she explains in the show. “So we want to set it up and have these different milestones and testing places along the way to test our internal candidates and to test ourselves. Are we ready?”
DDJ Myers SVP Peter Myers adds that he wants to distinguish between being ready to get the CEO job and being ready to do the job exceptionally well. “Make sure you self-assess,” he advises, “why you want to get this job…. Find someone you trust to give you unvarnished feedback. Ask them, ‘What do you think are the primary and secondary reason I’m vying for this job?’ … Boards and members and staff want someone that is going to put their needs far above and beyond (the executive’s) own self-interest needs. One of the primary jobs of the CEO is to get the best out of their staff.”
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