As safety professionals, we rarely have a direct reporting relationship to the CEO. Our time spent with the CEO is limited by our reporting relationships and the time s/he spends in conversation on safety-related matters.
This provides us with a challenge on the times we do meet with the CEO. We want you to be prepared to share your successes and provide your wisest counsel. You can expect to have many limitations (time, stress, relationship) on getting your message heard.
It is important to take the time to think about what you believe needs to be accomplished to prevent injuries and illnesses to employees and clients and put it into a story that is related to the CEO's world.
If your CEO has golf as a passion (and many do,) this session will help you bridge your message to their passion. Language and culture are integrated into this exchange. Golf has a language and statistic all its own. Use it to your improve your game when speaking with your CEO.
CEOs can relate to golf. It is where they spend their social time. They understand the need to practice, to understand the game, to learn the course, to judge the quality of their clubs, to accept feedback regarding their strokes, and to position themselves to win by mastering those skills and putting them to work.
Here are a few lessons from golf that we will use to illustrate their ability to use a language understood by golfing CEOS:
Know the entire layout-each of the 18 holes has a specific layout/design
Holes are played one at a time and in order
Know distance and how far you need to go
Know hazards and strategies to avoid or overcome with fewest strokes
Know the rules of play-The Rules of Golf-USGA
Keep score with integrity-BY THE NUMBERS
Having equipment that fits takes preparation
Use a practice swing on new equipment to get the feel
Keep up with improvements on new equipment to improve your game
Working with club management & staff in a private club environment
Know the CEO
Know the CEO's direct reports
Let CEO know your ability to work with Operations, CFO, Risk Manager, Human Resources and the management team
Know the company and their products, services, financials & strategic plans, plans for growth/change
Storytelling on how to get to the CEO
What is the structure and hierarchy in the business culture
What if you can't get to the CEO-story adaptation
Setting up the meeting
Respect time-Be able to tell story in 10–15 minutes. Expand if asked.