Wilson was a first-time CEO. The company was doing well, but not quite as well as the board had hoped. Wilson found himself uncomfortable as a minority shareholder working with a board that could fire him if he didn’t perform.
Wilson wanted to know how to manage a Board of Directors. The first step was to acknowledge that a board has different measures of success than the CEO. That means there will naturally be tension. The second step was to dig in to deeply understand what the key drivers are for each board member.
Based on this information, Wilson can now address his needs, the company’s needs, and the board’s needs. That was the first breakthrough.
Once he knew how to address the needs of the board, we turned to address his needs. As Wilson’s CEO Coach, I helped him realize that the board is an incredible asset to leverage.
Wilson began to build relationships with the board members individually to understand better how they could be of service to him and the company.
When Wilson works with the board, he is fully aware of their needs and addresses them appropriately. More importantly, he now tells the board what he is doing and relies on their insight and experience for feedback on how to help the company perform at a higher level.
Wilson is no longer concerned about the board and now gets more out of them than ever before.