So you just got a new visiting card. It reads CXO of a great Company. It depicts a huge evolution in your professional life. A new workplace environment, scaled-up teams and resources, empowered decision making, life-sized challenges and hard calls.
How do you ensure that you stay centred and true to the person you are?
Some lessons from the Buddha provide food for the soul:
Manage your inner self
Just as DNA determines your genetic traits, it is your inner self, or the sum total of your ideologies, that determines your true mettle and your ability to transform life’s challenges into opportunities. Your environment is a mirror of your inner space. How you react to change in an environment critically depends on the goodness within. The bigger you are in the organisation, the bigger should be your soul.
Being a CXO is always about the management of your resources or ‘Manage-Men-Tactics’. Manage the men and the women behind the organisation well, and work will take care of itself. Listen to them, add a personal touch to your professional relationship and do not let your achievements dwarf theirs, even if it is the most junior or the least significant role in the organisation. Your job is to motivate them so that they work better for the organisation.
Look at the problem, not the people
Continuously transform your thinking to be objective. It is about the problem, not the person who is causing the problem. The key is to focus on the message and to disassociate yourself from who is delivering it. Disregard the method of deliverance- avoid the tendency to spot flaws in the way the task was undertaken. Use your power to fix situations, not people. Each failure is a lesson: rectify it and move on. When your employees see how level headed you are with accepting people and their mistakes, they will make an active decision to change their faults themselves.
Win over yourself
The toughest battle in the days ahead is the one that you wage against yourself. There is an ongoing struggle between your true empowered self and surrounding negativity. When your lesser self takes over, your ego is manifested. The need to win over one’s lesser self is imperative to win over oneself, and hence, win over the world.
Create value, not products
Research shows that customers and employees look up to organisations that act for the greater good. Your role empowers you to bring in real change in your organisation. Monetary targets are important, but it is the value you create for your customers, your teams and the industry that you operate in that defines your success. When you help your team members grow professionally, or drive collective rather than personal well-being, you make a real difference.
You’re headed for more 24/7 work routines, along with the perks that go with the territory. Between board meetings and the next 18-hole round, it is important to introspect, self-assess and grow as a human being. A great human being makes a great CXO. So as you take the corporate elevator up to the top floor, don’t be left lonely.