Try to be a Good CEO

Whenever I felt frustrated, and felt there were so many balls falling and so little time, my friend just smiled and told me: “Welcome to the world of a CEO”.

Yes. That is the experience to be a CEO. As an entrepreneur, you are facing the challenge that only the people who were in that position can understand – the loneliness, and the excitement – oh, boy, nothing in this world is comparable to that. I show my full respect to every CEO in this world – even my competitors, even former Apple CEO, former Yahoo! CEO, and former whatever company CEO who ended their career in a way of public failure – they have all the due respects, not to mention the greatest CEOs of this century – Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, and Jack Welch. We are just the same kind.

Few weeks ago, I had breakfast with Sun Cheng-Yaw, and Jack Gao (one was the former HP Greater China GM, and the other was former Microsoft China GM). They shared their experience of running a company as the real CEO and a big country subsidiary. Basically the difference is, you know you can screw up a company single-handedly while screwing up China does not kill HP or Microsoft. Pressure really comes from responsibility.

I am just trying to be a better CEO – a journey that needs a lot of work, and needs a lot help. The most important thing is to surround yourself with the right group of people, and share the same dream. That is so important, and I will name it as the third learning in my startup, besides the two I already shared with Stanford students few weeks ago (focus and cost).

4 thoughts on “Try to be a Good CEO

  1. Michael

    Nice writing Mr. Wang! I’m not a CEO but I can understand everything you write here.

    I agree especially the part that you write about The most important thing is to surround yourself with the right group of people, and share the same dream. I personally have the same thinking and experience.

    Keep writing. If I may advice, “pls don’t try to be a Good CEO”, but “just be a Good CEO”. Since nothing are good that coming from trying…

    Cheers

    Michael

  2. elliottng

    I like your insight about finding people who share the same dream. I would add that these people need to energize and inspire you, just as you do them. Being a startup founder, esp. as the CEO, is a exhausting grueling process that has one tough moment after another. You need to be surrounded by people who give you positive energy, and help you personally keep going…it can be viewed in as simple and as selfish of a way as that. Your sustained energy level = #1 most predictive factor of the company’s success. At least for me, my sustained energy level is a function of the 2-4 other people that are both inspired by me and committed to my vision, and are simultaneously inspiring to me.

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