Business leaders will agree that the path to business growth is never easy. Growth means managing the day-to-day — while at the same time thinking about implementing your strategy and making effective decisions that affect the entire organisation. And sometimes, things don’t work out the way you envisioned it. When things go rough, to whom do you turn for wisdom?
In today’s episode of Leadership through Disruption, Stephanie Christopher (CEO, The Executive Connection), as interviewed by Ashton Bishop (CEO, Step Change), talks about how having a board of advisers, a consultant, or a peer network helps CEOs and executives.
Formal Board or Advisory Board
The role of a board is critical for keeping good corporate governance. It consists of a choice group of people who give counsel and support to the owners or directors of a large organisation.
A strong advisory board consists of a mix of people with different expertise, personalities, and talents. This means, when a business opportunity arises, you can draw on their skills and knowledge, confident that their expert opinions are backed with experience. This also means, if you are met with a business challenge, you can turn to the board for insight to overcome the strategic risks that are threatening your business.
“The idea of having an external consultant works very well for a particular part of your strategy implementation”, Stephanie says. Consultants provide knowledge and information that is not be readily available in the organisation. They come in to introduce systems and solutions to help grow the business effectively. They also look into ideas the internal team came up with to validate them.
Some businesses opt to have external consultants because most often than not, solutions are found when challenges are looked at from an expert outsider’s point of view. Their value is in their ability to provide a fresh perspective and a different frame of reference.
Put 12 high-performing executives in a room, and the possibilities are endless. CEO peer networks consist of CEOs, business leaders, and executives that get together to talk about how they can run their businesses, and most importantly, their lives, better.
Working alongside a diverse mix of CEOs and business leaders, Stephanie finds that peer network “is such a powerful way to get a different lens on your organisation or yourself as a leader.”
Peer groups are venues for leaders to get diverse, high-value perspectives and mentoring concerning their challenges. It’s a safe environment where discussions are held confidential, so leaders are encouraged to be open about these issues. And where insight meets experience, leaders are sure to leave the venue with a clear, definitive action plan.
Stephanie Christopher is the CEO of The Executive Connection (TEC), the world’s largest CEO organisation with over 21,000 members in 16 countries through the global Vistage network. Stephanie’s role at TEC puts her in the heart of the Australian and New Zealand business community on a daily basis, speaking to CEOs and business leaders about the challenges and opportunities that they are facing.
Ashton Bishop is Australia’s first Predatory Marketer and the CEO of Step Change — an expert in pinpointing how businesses can grow by outsmarting their competitors. His niche is in strategy, where he has spent the last 14 years working internationally on some of the world’s biggest brands. He’s a business owner and serial entrepreneur — challenging, sometimes even controversial — but always focused on what gets results.