C-Suite Network™

5 Principles All Great CEOs Stand By

CEOs are constantly concerned with differentiating their business, how they are perceived in the market and profitability, to name but a few areas paramount to running a successful business. I find in my work as a coach and specialist in brand personality, that very often some obvious factors are missing if the potential in these areas is to be anywhere near maximized.

Let’s work on the premise that people buy people – I think we’re all pretty agreed on that one – but let’s look at just why that is so true. Trust is perhaps the number one element that consumers, clients, new talent and partner companies look for when they choose a company to be associated with or buy from. Trust does not come from written words in clever advertising statements or marketing collateral. It simply comes from the feeling that I get when I deal with the people in your company.

That experience is dependent on how the employee or of course you as a senior leader is feeling and how you interact with that stakeholder. The emotion created becomes (in the eyes of the stakeholder) the brand not just of you but the company.

To be successful in our current competitive market, a CEO must be more than an image on the website or an occasional speaker on the internal stage. Today’s CEO accounts for more than 50% of the company’s reputation so this element of your corporate brand cannot be left to chance.

Here, I am sharing the five traits I believe every successful company leader should display if they are to embrace the need to create solid brand personality and lead from the top and be truly engaged with their teams and clients.

  • A willingness to learn and listen. Having the ability and willingness to learn new techniques, receive coaching, listen to others opinions and develop their own emotional & social intelligence and communication skills, and not just rely on past experiences for decision making, makes a CEO more adaptable with new fresh ideas to new challenges and situations.


  • Openness and transparency. Vital ingredients for effective leadership – if your people don’t know where they are going and why, they will never follow and support you to the level required for creating a trusted environment and culture. Being approachable in the office and having set ‘open house” times can have very positive effects as an example.


  • A true appreciation of what’s required for high employee engagement. If a CEO really cares about what his people need to be happy at work and valued in their roles, a culture of trust and respect is supported from the top down. Providing employees with the training to be confident in themselves and feel truly empowered to do the right thing in a safe environment is paramount to creating a respectful culture.


  • A high level of visibility to clients and consumers – CEOs who engage with all their stakeholders by getting outside their office, presenting at external events, active on social media, media interviews wherever appropriate and possible, create a higher degree of authentic personality in the brand that so many consumers demand today. We feel that we know much more about the company if we can see into the heart of the CEO.


  • Solid relationship building skills. The ability to build trusted, solid relationships is one of the most valuable skills a CEO can possess or continually develop. Being talked about as a CEO who is truly interested in others, respects their input, is prepared to support their ideas and promote them to others and make people feel valued, who always does what they say they will do, are just some of the ways of creating a solid CEO brand that gets talked about and subsequently creates a personality to the corporate brand that truly differentiates.





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