Ep. 354 – CEO, Arron Coaching, LLC., Laurie Benezra-Arron

In today’s episode of the Second in Command podcast, Cameron discusses the intricate role of a Chief of Staff with Laurie Arron, executive coach and the author of ‘Who Has Your Back?: A Leader’s Guide to Getting the Support You Need from the Chief of Staff You Deserve.’ The conversation begins with an exploration of the Chief of Staff’s role, highlighting its multifaceted nature and its evolution from military origins to a vital position in the corporate sector. Laurie emphasizes that the role is often misunderstood and varies significantly between organizations, serving primarily to align with the CEO’s priorities and the company’s mission.

Laurie explains the distinctiveness of the Chief of Staff role from other executive positions, illustrating its depth in serving the CEO’s vision and contrasting it with the broader operational scope of roles like COOs. She articulates the key functions of a Chief of Staff, including strategic support to the CEO, project coordination, and ensuring effective internal and external communication.

The conversation shifts to the challenges CEOs face, such as time management and the importance of delegation. Laurie underscores the necessity of a ‘handshake meeting’ at the inception of a CEO-Chief of Staff relationship to establish mutual expectations and working dynamics. This meeting, akin to taking vows, sets a foundation for a successful partnership.

Further, Laurie provides insights into the career trajectory of a Chief of Staff, noting that most hold the position for about 18 months to two years, with their roles evolving as the organization’s needs change. The conversation also covers the recruitment of Chiefs of Staff, advocating for internal hiring due to their inherent understanding of the company’s culture and operations.

Cameron and Laurie discuss the importance of not just finding the right Chief of Staff but also knowing how to effectively leverage their capabilities. Laurie emphasizes the significance of trust, integrity, and clear communication in fostering a robust relationship between the CEO and the Chief of Staff.

Laurie also reflects on her career journey, offering advice to her younger self and others aspiring to impactful leadership roles. She advocates for speaking one’s truth, contributing thoughtfully, and always aiming to do the right thing, especially in influential roles like that of a Chief of Staff.

Enjoy!

 

In This Episode You’ll Learn:

  • The multifaceted nature of the Chief of Staff role, its evolution from military origins, and its critical importance in aligning with the CEO’s vision and the company’s mission.
  • The uniqueness of the Chief of Staff’s responsibilities compared to other executive roles, focusing on strategic support, project coordination, and effective communication within the organization.
  • Common challenges CEOs face, such as time management and the necessity of delegating effectively.
  • The significance of the ‘handshake meeting’ between a CEO and Chief of Staff, setting clear expectations and establishing a solid foundation for their working relationship.
  • The career trajectory of a Chief of Staff, with insights on the typical tenure in the role and the evolutionary nature of the responsibilities as the organization’s needs change.
  • Strategies for recruiting the right Chief of Staff, with a preference for internal hiring due to the inherent understanding of the company’s culture and operations.
  • The key elements of fostering a strong and productive relationship between the CEO and Chief of Staff, including trust, integrity, and clear communication.
  • The critical role of the Chief of Staff in steering the CEO away from micromanagement and ensuring focus on strategic initiatives and vision.
  • The importance of self-awareness and confidence in one’s contributions, particularly in influential roles like that of a Chief of Staff.
  • And much more…

 

Resources:

Connect with Laurie: Website | LinkedIn 

Laurie’s Book: ‘Who Has Your Back?: A Leader’s Guide to Getting the Support You Need from the Chief of Staff You Deserve’

Connect with Cameron: Website | LinkedIn

Get Cameron’s latest book “Meetings Suck: Turning One of The Most Loathed Elements of Business into One of the Most Valuable”

Get Cameron’s online course – Invest In Your Leaders

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