CEO Mentoring

Preparing to Lead

One of the Board's most important responsibilities is to ensure the company has the best possible CEO. Grooming of internal 'ready to go' candidates is essential to ensure smooth transitions - investors don't like surprises from unprepared Boards.

However, every first-time CEO will be confronted with the most significant change in his or her professional life. There is no other role like the CEO and it can be very lonely at the top. Relationships with former peers and colleagues are transformed, the responsibility of company-wide decisions weighs heavily, and dealing with the Board, investors, analysts, regulators, and the media takes on a different dimension. This is a pivotal stage in an individual's career and can have a significant impact on the fortunes of the company and its share price.

Mentoring for CEO candidates and new appointees by very seasoned Chairmen, who are former CEOs, increases the odds of success. CMi's CEO Mentoring programme is designed to enable internal candidates to anticipate how to deal with behavioural, personal and social interaction issues more effectively from the outset.

This does not substitute for the Board's responsibilities to nurture and support the internal candidate(s). It merely complements a well-managed transition process by allowing each candidate to bring up issues that he or she may not feel comfortable raising internally. It also provides opportunities to solicit a confidential second opinion with a neutral, seasoned former Chief Executive on key issues that are likely to be encountered in the new role.

The process remains completely confidential throughout - this is absolutely essential in order to be fully effective. Once appointed, the new CEO continues the relationship with the Mentors during the early stages of their new tenure. Often the relationship between Mentors and Mentee continues well beyond the term of the engagement, frequently becoming a lasting and valued professional friendship of mutual benefit for the years ahead and without the need for CMi's ongoing involvement.