So, what is a CEO day, and why do I need one.
Well, a CEO day is a vital part of running a growing business. You see, entrepreneurs like us are usually doing any and everything to keep the business going. Sales, marketing, accounting, client calls, developing products, hiring people, training people, and on and on and on.
All that activity, while it’s really necessary, doesn’t leave much time for actually being the leader in the business. You know, the one that comes up with ideas for new products or services, the one that sees a client need (either today, or in the future), and can get in front of delivering on that need. The one that can clearly say, we’re going that way, and this is how.
Remember, this business is your baby. It was created from an idea you had in your head. And that’s your secret sauce – your creativity. But once things get going, we become so focused in the day to day, that that big picture vision we used to have, gets dimmer. Actually, its more like it gets ignored.
Come on – tell me when was the last time you thought about, I mean really thought about, your vision of where the company is going. I bet it’s been a minute – because you’re so busy doing accounting!
Well, that’s why having a dedicated CEO day is critical. And it doesn’t matter if it’s just you, or if you have a team, the need is still there. If it’s just you, you have to give yourself time and space to focus on leading the business. If you have a team, well, you have to give yourself time and space to focus on leading the business. You see, it’s the same one way or the other.
So, block out a day a week – or if that’s too much for you to take on, then do a day every other week – and make it your CEO Day.
It’s a day when you’ll just focus on the business – and you’re not allowed to do any work IN the business on that day. No admin, no team meetings, no eMail – that’s right, no eMail. Because you and I both know that once you even look at your eMail, you are headed straight down the rabbit hole. So on CEO Day, put your out of office on.
AND – you may not, I repeat, not use CEO day to catch up on work. That is most definitely not CEO day material.
So, now we know what you shouldn’t do on CEO day – but what should you be doing?
Well, I suggest you take a look at your goals. Revisit your vision for the business, what do you want it to look like at the end of this year, what about the end of next year, what about the year after that. Use the time to ideate – think of an idea or ideas, develop a fresh perspective, be creative.
“… when was the last time you thought about, I mean really thought about, your vision of where the company is going. I bet it’s been a minute – because you’re so busy doing accounting!..”
You know the process of ideating is really interesting, because it’s not just great ideas you come up in your head; you should be reaching out for ideas from other industries, other sectors, other businesses. What are they doing. What innovations have they developed. What about new processes? Can you adapt any of those to your business?
Actually, along the same lines, what about new products or services. You know, it was during a CEO day that I developed IDO University for our clients’ employees. And now we’re creating a full course curriculum dedicated to employee development. It’s a great addition to our services, and has brought in a good amount of additional revenue.
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CEO Day is also a great time to advance your knowledge. Read a book, take a class, listen to a podcast or watch a video. Do something to expand your thinking and broaden your knowledge. You can’t believe that re-hashing the same ideas over and over again, will yield anything new or groundbreaking. You need fresh input. So use CEO Day to uplevel your thinking.
Review your analytics. What are the key performance indicators for your business, and how are they performing. Sure you might do a quick review of your metrics occasionally, but have you done a deep dive to really see what that information is telling you? If not, that’s a really good use of CEO Day time.
Or- you might just use CEO Day to take a walk in the woods. Get out of the same old environment, seeing the same old things. Change sparks creativity. So get out, get some fresh air, see nature, be quiet and just think. Trust me, it will do you good – but it will do your company a world of good as well.