My best advice for a new CEO: Model the behavior you want the rest of the company to emulate to build a great culture.

It’s a simple, valuable message, and one I was excited to share with author Doug Noll, of Authority Magazine, for his series “Five Things I Wish Someone Told Me Before I Became A CEO.”

Growing up, I was lucky enough to have a front-row seat to grit and hard work. My father built his own company but would still clean a bathroom as CEO when he saw it was needed. I also watched my mother excel in multiple, very different careers. She never lectured me about responsibility or the value of teamwork. She passed life lessons through hard work.

I leverage the lessons from my background and stops in my career each day in my role as CEO. It’s a challenging job that requires discipline and accepting full responsibility for performance. The role is very different from the myth of the globe-trotting CEO schmoozing at expensive dinners with other CEOs. Instead, since I’m ultimately accountable, I must deeply understand the day-to-day business and how we are doing as a company.

If a new CEO asked me for five takeaways that I try to lean on, I’d say:

  • Be prepared to do the work you ask of others.
  • Always create time to invest in yourself.
  • Continually evaluate your long-term vision.
  • Pay attention to the things that keep you up at night.
  • Be open to feedback and advice – even when it is difficult to hear.

In speaking with Doug, I talked about my toughest decisions as CEO, as well as what I find most rewarding. I also shared a couple of humorous, but educational, missteps made when I was starting out. They are funnier and more insightful now than they were at the time.

Click here to read the full article.

About The Author

Jay is the President and CEO of Reveleer. He is a seasoned software and services executive with over 25 years of experience in various leadership capacities, including his most recent position as Chief Revenue Officer at Guidance Software. Jay holds his MBA from NYU’s Stern School of Business along with a bachelor’s degree in economics from Connecticut College.