Do you have a Chief Engagement Officer?

How to put the boss back in the leadership business.

How to put the boss back in the leadership business

The CEO is back.

Back as a passionate spokesman for your company’s mission. Back as a fierce champion of the work force. Back as a person … worth listening to.

Call him (or her) the Chief Engagement Officer. That’s the term coined by our brilliant friend in London, John Smythe, who sums up strategic employee communications in splendid simplicity:

Communicate the “what” and the “why” down, and the “how” up.

Here’s the deal: Employees want the big picture—the “what”—from their leaders, and they want it in clear, simple language, with a minimum of buzzwords and b.s. They also want the “why”: the urgency behind the strategy, and the consequences of not getting it done.

Then comes the “how.” It’s everyone’s job, from the CEO to the newest employee, to figure out the best way to reach those goals.

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