This year has proven to be quite turbulent for some of our most infamous CEOs. Clearly, the many highly publicized ethical lapses have caused some new entrepreneurs to rethink their own roles within the companies that they have founded.
With confusion and dismay, we watched how Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook CEO, was ordered to testify before the U.S. Senate after news broke that Cambridge Analytica, a data firm with ties to President Donald Trump’s campaign, gained access to information of about 50 million Facebook users, which violated Facebook policies. We were left wondering and questioning the integrity of Zuckerberg and his company as a whole.
More recently, one CEO who has been revered as a fearless leader, Elon Musk, of Tesla, was called a “disaster” and a “train wreck” as a public company CEO by Betsy Atkins, board member at Volvo Personvaganar, because of a $4 billion loss over a six-year period. Musk’s company has yet to show a profit for a full year and in an effort to recoup some finances, Tesla asked for a return of funds from suppliers. And, Musk has now proposed to take the company from public to private to gain relief from public shareholders.
How encouraging could these occurrences be to the new entrepreneur who must play the role of both entrepreneur and CEO at the very start of their new venture? Not too encouraging. However, understanding the responsibilities of a CEO and fully implementing them will make a world of difference to the culture of any new company.
To avoid some of the major pitfalls that we’ve seen and heard happening with major companies globally, here are the top seven responsibilities of a CEO that will assure elevated success:
- The most important and imperative responsibility that a CEO has is to RAISE CAPITAL. As the CEO, you must have your company in the position to qualify for unsecured lines of credit. You’ve got to manage revenue and expenses. Before your company comes before the masses, it needs to have all of the resources to maintain itself while it’s becoming profitable.
- This leads to the second responsibility that you must have as the CEO— TEAM BUILDING. You’ve got to have the financial ability to hire and train the right people according to the expertise that your business needs to be as successful as it can be. If you intend to have people who are on the top of the food chain in their field, you must have the means to pay them what they are worth. When your company is properly structured, you can also offer these qualified individuals some equity. You’ll stand a better chance at getting exactly who you want on your team when there is something equitable in it for them.
- The third responsibility is to set clear and direct GOALS. You’re going to create and communicate your organization’s vision, its mission and strategy to your team and together you will implement them. Everyone should know where your company is trying to go, so you want to set goals that motivate and inspire your team to action.
- The fourth responsibility is OVERSEEING AND DELIVERING. You have to oversee the complete operation of your organization in accordance with the direction established in the strategic plans created by you and your team. You’re ultimately responsible for your company’s performance so the expectation to deliver falls on you!
- The fifth responsibility is BRAND MANAGEMENT. Because you are playing the role of both entrepreneur and CEO, building and maintaining a strong brand, personally and professionally, is a MUST! Whatever your industry calls for in terms of creating a worthy and memorable reputation, you have to be on board with doing what it takes and extending the necessary financial resources to make it happen.
- Ok, now it’s getting thick! The sixth responsibility is INVESTOR MANAGEMENT. Did you know that your investors can be your greatest sales people? Yes! When you nurture your relationship with those who invest in you and your company, it is more likely that they will bring other investors onboard to support your company’s growth. Showing your investors how they are benefiting from the profitability of your company will increase their confidence as well as their investment.
- The last responsibility is CORPORATE DEVELOPMENT. As you are sharpening your CEO skills, you will know when it’s time to take on some strategic alliances. Soliciting advice and guidance is commonplace among some of the leading CEOs of our time. Mergers and acquisitions will often require the assistance of specialists who bring a knowledge base that your current team members may not have. Your company can be as large or as small as you like it. It is still your responsibility to develop its corporate culture.