If you’re the leader or chief executive officer of a large, fast-growing business, you might have been featured on the Inc 5000! You know just how difficult it can be to captain the ship. Especially now after going through a pandemic, dealing with the internal and external factors that make leading a business hard is more topical than ever.
At Ajax Union, we understand the unique challenges of CEOs of fast-growing companies, because we are one; we were featured on the Inc 500 in 2013.
Here are the top 8 challenges high-growth CEOs face today.
1. Taking a step back
As a leader, the rush of day-to-day work tends to consume your energy in your personal life, too. Today, CEOs are finding it more and more difficult to find the time and space to take a step back and reflect.
Why reflect? It’s important for mental health, but it can also help CEOs get clarity on key strategic initiatives. CEOs today need to schedule time for reflection just as much as they need to join meetings.
2. Dealing with transitional periods
Leaders and employees alike know just how difficult it is to navigate change at a company. CEOs, most of all, bear the burden of deciding what the best possible way to navigate company change is.
How do you make sure the culture is defined by trust and communication? How do you make it easy for your teams to navigate growth? High-growth CEOs are plagued by how to make a transitional period at a company a seamless and effective one.
3. Standing out in a saturated market
In today’s day and age, there are immense amounts of competition in the market and due to the nature of the internet, brand awareness has become a slippery slope to tread.
CEOs today are wondering how they can stay ahead of the competition in a saturated market. CEOs are looking for support in uncovering their unique value and how to properly market it.
4. Finding and retaining talent
One of the largest issues CEOs, not just recruiters, face is finding the best talent for your company. If your business is navigating high-growth, it may be especially difficult to find talent with not only the right skill set but the right cultural fit for your company.
How are other companies doing it? CEOs spend plenty of time trying to uncover the best ways to find talent when some of the best talent is already working for a competitor!
5. Getting overwhelmed
As you can probably imagine, CEOs are very prone to feelings of overwhelm. By having to deal with several, sometimes hundreds of problems daily, CEOs need help navigating immense stress during their workweek.
6. Navigating social issues
It’s no secret that politics and business don’t mix. But in today’s politically charged climate, CEOs are learning how to navigate social issues as a company.
Stakeholders and employees are demanding that their companies take a stand on key political issues that face our nation today. It’s no wonder CEOs need support with this.
7. Nurturing a strong and supportive work culture
Is having a successful company the same as having a positive and healthy work culture? Not necessarily. CEOs today need support creating a work environment and company culture that employees want to work in for the long haul.
8. Creating something that lasts
Is high-growth always sustainable? Not always. In a fast-moving economy, CEOs are finding it more and more difficult to navigate growth opportunities that align with their company’s mission. CEOs need trusted advisors, colleagues, and confidants to rely on to make sure they’re taking actions that don’t only allow the company to grow, but to grow with integrity.
All in all, being a leader comes with a unique set of challenges that only other leaders can understand. The list of challenges above gives only a small peek into the world of entrepreneurship and fast growth. CEOs, now more than ever, need support to tackle and navigate the challenges they face in their day-to-day lives.
Luckily, there is a community of like-minded CEOs — CEO Mastermind — that does just that!