Poor Richard's Junto: management science, entrepreneurship, business ownership, management

This blog dares leaders to do better. We encourage those managers with the wits to change and we exchange ideas in management science to mutual benefit and personal development. This is the place for those leaders who admonish folly and hubris and yet are devoted to continuous mental development, entrepreneurship, business ownership, & business management. As such, let this be a forum for thought leaders, CEOs, and business owners as Ben Franklin once did with the Junto and his almanac.

If two men exchange dollars; each man stands to gain a dollar. However, let these men exchange ideas, and each stands to gain a fortune.

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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

What can a Chief of Staff do for you?

The Chief of Staff role is not as familiar in today's "lean" organizational structure. However, the role if optimized, can be quite powerful. Perhaps in fatter times the role may have become an entourage of "yes" men. However, when properly implemented it is a fertile platform for mentoring, a way to expand the availability of the CEO, and a tremendous backstop for the organization. The video and description below illustrates how this role can be a powerful extension of the Chief Executive's Office. 

Chief of Staff Overview:
To increase the bandwidth and velocity of the CEO or unit leader in such a way as to concentrate his or her time, effort and priorities on strategic initiatives.

  • Executive project oversight: Acts on the authority of the office of the CEO to oversee strategic projects with a primary focus on initiatives affecting the value chain that typically require cross functional resource allocation.
  • Facilitates the process of project solicitation, selection, prioritization, implementation, and monitoring.
  • Ad-hoc analysis and decision support
  • Disseminates information and communicates ideas on behalf of the CEO
  • Designee to originate areas of opportunity internally and externally
  • Maintains the Strategic Plan and facilitates the annual process
  • “Executive-on-demand” for backstopping vacancies providing bench strength
  • Operates a reporting system and dashboard
  • Serves as a first alert system
  • Oversees a central data repository for capturing, cataloging, analyzing and disseminating key lessons and resources
  • “Ambassador” for the CEO, buffering communication with other members of the strategic team in cases where there are sensitive issues.  Takes initial meetings with outside parties for screening purposes or as a representative of the CEO’s office for greater accessibility.

  • Introvert and Extrovert capabilities
  • Unimpeachable integrity
  • Selflessness
  • Emotional intelligence
  • The ability to give and receive constructive criticism
  • Diplomacy skills
  • Keen judgment
  • Entrepreneurial
  • Discerning ability to recognize salient business issues that “move the needle”
  • Finely honed communication skills
    • Upwards to the CEO
    • Laterally to others on the executive team
    • Downward throughout the organizational chart

  • A multi-faceted lattice work of mental models and case study to draw upon
  • Project management
  • Organization
  • Sensitivity and orientation to identify systemic issues
  • Multi-tasking
  • Time management
  • Benchmarking
  • Trouble shooting and creative system orientated solutions
  • Professional reporting methodologies
  • Information gathering and analysis
  • A keen mind and multi-focal intelligence

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