5 Internal People Every CEO Needs
No leader should ever find themselves alone in their struggles and decisions. Leadership is about having a team of people to provide help and support through the difficult moments of the hour.
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Every leader knows the phrase, "It's lonely at the top." It's true that leaders often experience loneliness. Many times, they are the only one who knows everything about every person and situation in the company.
When a leader has no one to share their personal troubles or triumphs with, it can drain their energy and lead them to make poor decisions. They have no one to expand their thinking, share their ideas with or from whom they can receive insights and inspiration.
No leader should ever find themselves alone in their struggles and decisions. Leadership is about having a team of people to provide help and support through the difficult moments of the hour. Here are five internal people every CEO needs on their team:
1. An excellent executive assistant
One key person that a leader needs on their team is an effective executive assistant. Executive assistants help executives by supporting the CEO with critical tasks and responsibilities and acting as an extension for information for the organization's leader. Trust and effective communication are essential attributes of this person on the team.
Many business owners can be tempted to forgo hiring an executive assistant because they would prefer to put those resources in other parts of the business. However, when the leader produces, the organization produces. The executive assistant enables the leader to be more effective and productive.
Related: 5 Tips For Building a Strong Leadership Team
2. A capable and prepared second in command
A powerful benefit of having a second in command is that they can take the reins when needed. By nature, most leaders have a deep drive to create a better company but are often frustrated by a lack of time, people, or resources to help make their plans a reality. A second in command or an operations person can help bring continuity to the operation and insight into many parts of the organization.
The leader should find responsible people who will help them think intentionally about the next steps of the organization. When leaders have people they trust to make decisions and lead well, it enables the top leader to spend their time working on the business and not just in the business.
3. A strategic numbers person
Every CEO needs a person close to them who understands and can interpret numbers. Numbers don't lie, and numbers tell a story. Many business owners and CEOs are not gifted with the ability to know and understand the truths or the story that the organization's numbers tell. Every CEO should manage by a few key numbers in the organization.
Many businesses struggle to make and keep a profit. A strategic numbers person will help the CEO to manage key metrics and help the leader to make wise decisions that will ultimately make the company more profitable.
Related: Why Entrepreneurs Should Choose Insights Over Instincts
4. A operational and process expert
Every business will have processes. The growing business will have a clear understanding of the critical processes that will set them up for success. These critical processes could include processes around payroll, customer and team members onboarding and offboarding and systems around procurement.
One way to grow the organization's processes and systems is by onboarding an operational expert to your team. This person might perform as a general manager or as an operations manager. Their primary task is to examine how things are done and work to improve efficiencies throughout the organization.
5. A high emotional intelligent people person
In business, it is always about the people. People will propel your organization forward or consistently bring it down. Working with people is difficult because people often are not a finished product. People need to be trained, developed and invested in to reach their peak performance. Having someone in the circle of the CEO with an eye for bringing out the best in people will be a key to achieving the business principle of "improve your team to improve your organization."
The people person will have a high emotional equivalent and be able to see multiple sides of an issue. People in life deal with a multitude of issues. Often those issues can be brought into the workplace, and good people can be left to underperform without a person who can walk them through how to overcome their problems and improve themselves and their personal performance.
As companies grow, they will often develop an HR department. As the CEO continues to expand their team, they need to consider having a people person close to them to help them discern who can be trusted, how to handle difficult people issues, and what people policies will be necessary to build a robust team culture.
Your team can make you better
The CEO Team is critical to the leader's success and the organization they lead. Many business owners understand the value of their team as it relates to their business but can neglect to build a personal team around them to help them achieve breakthroughs, uncover blind spots, and wrestle with day-to-day decisions professionally and personally.