Congratulations, you got your first CEO job! Now, what do you do?
First, avoid the temptation to make promises and set strategic goals in the first few weeks. This is a common impulse for new leaders, especially first-time CEOs with heroic notions. They run the risk of setting expectations that are too high, making promises that are unrealistic, or acting before thoroughly understanding the organization.
As soon as you have accepted the CEO position, you should plan to have a conversation with the person who is responsible for good governance and sets the tone for the board — the board chair. A key question to ask is why you were chosen over the other candidates who were interviewed for the position.
Networks, both formal and informal, will help meet different needs, and you will find that having a collection of people whose talents and ideas you can count on will prove invaluable. The actual networks that will work best for you depend on the needs of your organization, your current skills, and the missing experience.
Networks spark ideas, lead to partnerships and collaboration, and can accelerate impact. They are essential to any leader. It is your responsibility to develop and nurture them, not only for the sake of the organization’s work but also for your own development.
For this blog post, we have selected three Five Good Ideas sessions that look at good board governance and relationships. Five Good Ideas is Maytree’s lunch-and-learn program, where industry or issue experts discuss practical ideas on key management issues facing non-profit organizations.