What does it mean to behave like a CEO?
It treating your business and income like it matters. Consistent hours of operation. Quick email replies. Integrity. Follow-through. Keeping the promises you’ve made.
Most importantly, it means inspiring leadership when things don’t go according to plan– like amidst a pandemic. That’s the mark of a true CEO.
Look, it’s easy to be an entrepreneur when customers are rolling in, money is raining down, and everything is going smoothly.
Just like it’s easy to be a parent when your toddler is being a little angel, planting a soft kiss on your cheek, saying, “You’re the best mommy in the world.”
But you really discover who you are as a leader when things aren’t going right.
When your assistant makes a costly error. When your website hosting service crashes. When a product launch isn’t going as well as you hoped. When you’re rehearsing for a seminar and your kid’s school calls because he’s in trouble and has detention (again).
Those are the moments when you have to decide:
What kind of CEO do I want to be?
While navigating some frustrating (and potentially, very expensive) challenges in my own business, I had to remind myself:
I want to the kind of CEO who supports her team and gives them what they need. Solution-focused, not problem-focused. A CEO who asks, “Okay, what’s the next move?” instead of wallowing in the dilemma.
Will you be the kind of CEO who is calm and steady in the midst of a PR nightmare? Enthusiastic, full of sunlight, always ready with an inspiring story to boost morale? A mama bear who nurtures people’s potential? A motivational force-of-nature who gets people emotionally invested in their work?
You might run, as Paul Jarvis puts in, a “company of one.” Just yourself. Or you might have hundreds of people looking to you. Either way, it’s the tough moments when your true character is revealed.
How will you lead your team, and yourself?
What kind of CEO do you want to be?