How Do I Manage My Board, the whip

How Do I Manage My Board?

How do I manage my board…. it’s a balancing act between being transparent and the panic attacks. It’s all about timing.  A CEO who shares every detail of the highs and the lows of his daily whipsaw, will lose control of his board, his company and his sanity.

Hey folks every day in the life of a CEO is like the tail of a whip. Constant, high-speed, fast-paced, zigs and zags. Changes in motion. Ups and downs. Share too often and too early and lose the control and confidence of your board… fail to be transparent and timely and you may lose more than just confidence.

When you think about managing your board, you need to think about a whip. The tail of a whip moves at great speed over great distance. That’s the analogy of the life of a CEO. You live the life of the tail of a whip. You experience the ups the downs. That’s what it’s like to be inside the operation. The board doesn’t need to know how you make your sausage. They just need to know the ingredients, the nutrient info and the calorie count.

How do I manage my board you ask? You’re board is like the driver of your car. You’re the car. Your board doesn’t need to know what’s happening on each cylinder as your barreling down the road at 80 mph. They don’t need to feel the tread grabbing the pavement. They don’t need to drink the gasoline. All they need is a speedometer, warning lights, like the check engine and tire pressure lights. They need to be able to turn the wheel, push the accelerator and the brake. But all the little details that keep that baby chugging down the highway. That’s up to you.

How do I manage my board?

It’s your job as CEO to manage board expectations, good and bad. To let them know if the car is heading towards a ditch. But as CEO, you have the crisis du-jour.  Is it really a crisis or is it a tail of the whip issue? Are you driving and going to be 10 minutes early or 10 minutes late? No sweat. Is the car about to break down… that’s a board issue.

Want to talk to someone who’s managed a board or two or who’s managed as a board member? Try a complementary on-line one-on-one by pressing this doohickey button.