How to take on your first C-Suite leadership role

September 2nd 2022 | Posted by Dave

Your first C-Suite role is likely to elicit a mixture of emotions. The opportunity is exciting but can also be somewhat daunting.

The secret to starting out in the right way, and building a positive reputation, is to pay careful attention to your own behaviour and to the people around you.

There are several factors you need to consider to ensure that you do this. Let’s examine them in more detail.

Be clear about your vision for employees

Having complete clarity from the start is vital if you are going to be viewed as a trustworthy and strong leader. So, you need to understand the organisation’s vision, and make sure that this is communicated to employees.

Failure to pay attention to this as soon as you take over your new role can lead to confusion amongst your team and the wider organisation. Whereas, making the effort to ensure that everyone understands, and is working to, the same vision increases engagement and improves productivity. These are both vital considerations for anyone in a c-suite role.

Listen to and trust the people around you

One of the best ways to make informed decisions in a c-suite role is to listen to the people around you. This applies to other members of the senior team as well as the wider workforce.

Being open to listening give you access to insights from people who may have more detailed knowledge or up-to-date information concerning a specific subject. Having the benefit of their advice and insights helps you to make the best decisions for the business and keeps you on the right track.

Following on from listening to those around you, it’s equally as important to trust them. This involves recognising individual skills and abilities and empowering people to use them.

You cannot hope to achieve this if you micromanage and constantly supervise people. It’s essential to step back and be prepared to provide support and advice if required. Having this type of approach means that people are more likely to be motivated to perform at their best for you.

Believe in yourself

It’s important to understand that no-one knows everything, especially when starting out in a new role. So, you should not put unreasonable pressure on yourself. Top executives understand that undertaking a new role is a learning curve.

They also know that curtailing any doubts is important in order to increase confidence levels and perform well. The best way to do this is to take a step back and spend time considering all the skills you have developed over your career. Doing this creates a positive mindset which in turn enhances self-belief.

Top performing executives also know that asking their senior team peers for advice is a positive action. Seeking clarification or detailed advice is a sign of strength and shows a willingness to work as a team and to learn.

Considering these factors, and taking the required steps, makes taking on your first c-suite role easier and more productive.

If you are a senior executive looking for a new role, register with us. If you are an employer looking to hire into your leadership team, contact us.