With great power comes great responsibility. This should be the slogan for any company founder or CEO in the business world. You have the ultimate control over the company and its future endeavors. While having that power can be thrilling, it can also be daunting in choosing what initiatives you should put more of your energy into overseeing. You could easily spread yourself too thin in trying to balance all aspects of your company, and in the long run, that could prove detrimental to not only your company, but also your overall well-being.
For every business leader, their interests or ideas of what goes into making a company successful are probably different. However, there are some core responsibilities that many entrepreneurs should be responsible for when it comes to their company’s well-being and future successes. In focusing on some of the more imperative tasks as the CEO, you will not only oversee the company better, but also give yourself a clearer mind to make the bigger decisions for your organization.
Here are the five aspects of a company that you, as the CEO or Founder, should oversee and be responsible for in regards to your business.
1. Hiring / Building the right team
This is truly one of the most important parts in having a successful company and keeping it running. It is imperative that you play a part in hiring the most integral team players throughout the key positions in your company. As someone who built the company and has been there since its start, you know it better than anyone. That means you will know what kind of people you need to fill the roles of those around you.
As time goes on, and your company grows, you don’t have to be a part of every new hire, as that can take away too much of your time and focus. Stick to hiring those who will work the closest to you, or alongside your top-level managers. It is important to know the skill-level and experience of those around you, along with getting a feel for their personality.
While someone with the most experience may be the stereotypical fit for your company, their personality or overall demeanor may not feel right to you or for your company. As the person who started the company, you know it best and what you are looking for in an employee. Stay a part of that endeavor, and always make time to know who is being hired in positions that are vital to your company and close to you.
2. Building and maintaining customer relationships
Where would you be without your customers? Keeping your focus on the customers is key, especially if you want them to return and stay loyal to your brand. Regardless of what business industry you are in, maintaining and growing your customer base is imperative for the future of a company.
As the CEO, you should be involved in creating a strong foundational relationship with your customers. Be involved in both the sales and customer service initiatives that your company does to maintain and grow its consumer base. This action is instrumental in the first few years of your business startup. Being involved with this endeavor not only keeps you in-the-know of what’s going on inside your company, it also keeps you grounded and reminds you of why you’re doing this in the first place. Aside from just that aspect, both your customers and employees will see how involved and devoted their leader is to the success of the business.
Over time, you can step back and let your fellow employees take over the full aspect of growing new customer relationships. You can still be involved by making sure that your teams are following through on their goals for customer satisfaction by utilizing different measurement tools such as customer surveys, social media contests, or rewards for leaving reviews online. Knowing and understanding your perception to your customers should never fall to the sideline for a CEO, no matter how big or small their company may be.
3. Obtaining strong vendor relationships for purchasing power
Aside from your employees and customers, there are other important partnerships that need to be created to help in the success of your business. This would also include business relationships with your vendors, those who you buy your goods or services from. Your vendors aid in the success of your business as well, and treating them as more than a commodity can be instrumental for long term success. Their services and goods are just as vital to your company as your own relationships with customers are.
When you build strong partnerships with vendors, you can leverage better prices in return for longer use of their services or goods. By maintaining these sorts of relationships with vendors, you can obtain greater purchasing power for your business and garner huge cost savings for your company.
This is a great example of a win-win situation for both businesses, as it is quite important to have a relationship with your vendors, as opposed to having them just feel like another commodity to be used.
4. Strong branding of company and its image
In this world, having a digital imprint for your company isn’t just trendy, it’s also necessary. Knowing what social media platforms to use, along with your overall brand message, is an important aspect to your company that you should be overseeing and involved with.
You have to immerse yourself with the digital age, and manage your reputation in a world that connects us to so many people (i.e., customers). If (when) you create a website, Facebook page, Twitter or Instagram account, then be sure to maintain it. Nothing looks worse than an obsolete or low producing page. Keep your customers engaged and informed on what’s going on within your business. Offer contests on the various social media platforms, or send a “shout out” to someone who tags you online. These actions will not only increase your popularity online, but also lead to followers or customers who you would have never reached before.
If you are a bit worried about not keeping up with social media campaigns, then work alongside the experts you hire. Learn from their expertise, and be sure that they are keeping up with the image that you want for your brand’s online presence.
5. Knowing what benefits to offer your employees
This is a reason many employees seek other employment or think that the grass is greener on the other side. Knowing what benefits such as healthcare, retirement, and other “perks” to offer your team should be quite important to the leader of a business.
While you can’t always offer the “Cadillac” of insurance, do your best to know what other kinds of policies or benefits you could give your team. Look into supplemental policies that can assist in ways major insurance cannot or not without a high payout. There are other options out there, and if you are in the loop with those sort of things, that could help make the difference for someone to stay or leave your company.
You could also offer perks such as an allowance for lunches or company-wide picnics for families to come and enjoy outside of work. These are opportunities to build camaraderie among your team, and make them realize that they are not just important players for your company, but also in your life as well.