Quite a number of Australian businesses are somewhere along their digital transformation journey and the CEO is an essential part of driving this digital strategy. It can be a challenging task for any CEO, especially one who is not as digitally savvy with understanding digital development costs, timelines, resourcing requirements or the competitive digital landscape.
This is where you as the experienced digital leader could assist the CEO with improving their understanding of digital. Overtime the CEO will appreciate your efforts to improve their digital knowledge and they will become an even bigger digital supporter. And by working with the CEO, you will learn as they share their business knowledge and how it relates to digital.
Here are 4 recommendations to help build your relationship with the CEO and improve their digital knowledge.
- Understand the CEO’s digital knowledge – what is the CEO interested in digitally both professionally and personally? What do they want to learn about digital? How many digital devices do they own and what do they do online? All this information will help you understand the amount of information you need to assist the CEO improve their digital knowledge. (Also, expect the odd phone call to help the CEO use one of their digital devices.)
- Utilise the CEO’s network – the CEO receives countless invites and emails from consultants and vendors trying to sell/provide digital services. Given the CEO’s busy schedule, offer to be the first point of contact to filter out the noise and to recommend the most suitable consultants or vendors for the CEO to meet. The upside for you is access to review a wide range of digital technologies and services.
- Don’t just focus on the CEO – expand your assistance to all the C-Suite and understand how you can assist with their digital discussions. For example, find interesting research, white papers, statistics etc. Each member of the C-Suite will be looking at digital from a different perspective. This C-Suite engagement will broaden your view of digital across different business functions such as finance, operations, information technology, human resources, sales, etc; depending on the business structure.
- Find unique and interesting digital articles – allocate time in your workday to reading industry blogs and newsletters and find interesting articles for the CEO and C-Suite to read. Collate a number of articles together into one email and write a brief introduction with your opinion. Be selective with the information you send through as it should be either relevant to an existing business issue or completely not related to the business, but a great example of how digital is helping a business in a different industry.