The 6 Habits of Great C-Level Leaders

Written by EO Executives on Jun 27, 2018

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Partnering with clients to headhunt the very best talent means that the EO Executives team are fortunate enough to network with a number of top business leaders. These leaders are at the peak of their career, or the leaders of tomorrow.  Meeting with them is always an eye-opening opportunity as they can offer a fresh perspective and expertise. 

The added value of placing these leaders into leading businesses is highly rewarding when you witness how they can provide such a positive impact to organisations in a time of need.

The question is, when these leaders have reached the top level of their career, how do they continue their success? This is topic I continuously discuss my network and one that many C-level experts want the answer to.

Once you have made it to the top- how do you continue to grow and be the best leader in your space?

Let's explore this...

In such a saturated marketplace the competition is huge. Everyone wants to be the 'best leader' in their industry and once you get there the work doesn't stop. As the winners will tell you there is immense pressure for C-Suite leaders to excel in performance and continuously implement a strong return on investment. 

This might sounds familiar...

If you do a great job, nothing is said and the business continues to move forward as it has always done. If you perform badly... it will not go unnoticed. 

How do you solve this problem?

There are countless articles that discuss how to become a great leader, be successful and manage difficult roles. These articles/blogs are all based on poor leadership and how to overcome it. They all get a-lot of attraction because no-one wants to be a bad leader. The reality is there is nowhere to hide, and even one poor leadership decision could cost you your reputation.

Without a doubt you will make mistakes. We all do. But there are six core areas which will keep a leader stay above 'C-level'

1. Live by the company culture

Culture is arguably one of the most fundamental elements of any organisation. It is what establishes a brands values and behaviours- contributing to the physiological environment of and organisation. As a leader it is your responsibility to contribute to the company culture and set an example. Living by the company's values and visions. 

If you do not buy into the company culture/values- neither will your employees. 

2. Get the right people on board

There will be little success if like yourself, your employees do not buy into the values and mission of the business. Every business should hire based on attitudes and behaviours...not just skills. At EO Executives, we practice what we preach and firmly follow this principle. We have developed our own executive platform- executive-intro™ a hiring solution which guarantees you have the right people on board (find out more here).

3. Build relationships 

To be a successful leader you will need to have a good relationship with everyone of your employees and external stakeholders. If you want to be be seen as a strong leader within your business this will require commitment, and getting the most out of your employees will mean learning to influence on a personal basis.

If you can be flexible to the different personalities and working styles of your employees, you are well on your way to gaining to respect needed to lead a great business. 

4. Have a handle on your social media

As a business leader it will be your responsibility to know who leads the company's social media and ensure they follow a clear social media policy. Why? Social media is essentially the face of your brand and there is no room to get things wrong. Setting clear guidelines and communicating expectations will ensure your social media accounts portray the correct brand image and professionalism. 

5. Lead with humility

Self-celebration is great for acknowledging accomplishments and personal achievements- everyone should do it. However, it is also important to celebrate collaborative achievements within a business. As a leader you should act with humility and inspire a collaborative culture within the business. This will constitute to building a strong cohesive workforce, which your employees will want to thrive in. 

Strong leaders that do this well are genuine, courteous and give positive feedback to employees on their key achievements. Your employees will value your feedback and view you as a key influencer within the business. 

6. Follow the 80/20 rule

As a C-level leader the nature of your role will inevitably mean you cannot meet everyone's needs 100% of the time. Similarly, your employees will not always be performing at 100% and productivity levels will dip. 

The best leaders are aware of this and will likely adhere to the 80/20 rule because they know the business will perform better. According to the Pareto rule, 80% of the consequences of any action come from 20% of the causes. This is a common rule of thumb in business but it is not always followed.

What next?

I would be interested in hearing the key habits that you believe make a great business leader, so be sure to leave your comments below. In the meantime feel free to download our complimentary e-book below.

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