The Symphonic C-Suite – Bridging the Divide within the Business Ecosystem


8.2 minutes

It’s no secret that the top technology teams are becoming increasingly agile, team-centric, and networked as a competitive advantage. The C-Suite, however, is not adapting fast enough to keep up. Siloed CXOs must learn to work as a collective unit, a new term coined by Deloitte as the “Symphonic C-Suite.” Creating this equation of synergy is paramount when it comes to human capital.

The pandemic brought the importance of deploying workers in remote locations into sharp focus. Corporations need to re-examine how they connect with their teams on the front lines. We should recognize that any change within the business dynamics is a holistic process encompassing all stakeholders.

How do you straddle the line? How do you ensure enough experimentation and fragmentation to realize the advantages of iterative innovation? And how do you bring it all back under control while still providing the appropriate level of alignment, cooperation, and harmonization? Where and when do you intervene, course correct, and refocus your efforts?

Including Others in the Process

Consider inviting non-managers to quarterly board meetings to collect honest input on what’s working in your organization. This does not seem to be incongruent with present board procedures, does it? Isn’t this the same rationale for a business unit meeting or team leadership group? At the very least, leaders should consider having other (or different) voices at various meetings to infuse a new style of workplace collaboration and, as a result, another form of asymmetrical leadership in the workplace.

In other words, as a Revenue Operations leader in a hyper-growth organization, the feeling of success comes when our C-suite brings together multiple elements, like a great symphony orchestra. As the first RevOps lead at my company, it almost feels like the musical score is our GTM strategy. The different types of instrumental musicians are the various business positions, the first chairs are the operational leaders, and the conductor is our CEO.

Based on this model, the C-suite members lead their areas of responsibility and collaborate with other leaders to drive growth and break the silos throughout the organization. In short, our goal is to create a symphony of specialized experts playing in harmony and rhythm.

Even while a hierarchical structure is still essential, fixed mindset thinking and outmoded “command and control” behaviors are not ideals that promote a collaborative workforce. After all, the caliber of your people determines venture success. While technology is critical, people propel organizations forward through their judgments, inventions, and triumphs. They surpass customer expectations, support teammates, and look for new avenues to improve products and procedures in myriad ways.

As a business expands, C-level leadership gets more distant from day-to-day operations and may lose touch with corporate happenings.

Consequently, they might be sheltered from organizational challenges and convince themselves that they have a particular culture while, in reality, their employees are not feeling the love. When connections with workers at all levels are not developed and maintained, a type of “us vs. them” mindset may develop, contributing to high turnover and poor engagement.

Warming up the CEO Dialogue

The first step for a CEO who wishes to lead from the front is to schedule frequent meetings with chosen field managers. This communicates their belief in the importance of their task. However, the true benefit is exposing the CEO to these managers’ difficulties.

Routine contact doesn’t have to be a time commitment for the CEO, instead, integrate it into other activities. For instance, almost every CEO I know spends a significant portion of their time visiting firm operations across the globe. Typically, site visits include talks with local management, customers, government officials, and sometimes huddles with the local workforce. On these trips, prioritize frontline supervisors.

For instance, you can see the dedication to modernization and operators in new artificial intelligence and machine learning products. It’s especially evident in applications and gadgets that enhance productivity, profitability, and morale. Industries are adopting new technology, realizing that their people ultimately determine long-term performance. Committing to digitally connecting employees on the ground results in a more agile workforce and enables firms to respond quickly to competitive demands.

Reimagining the road to business success

Investing in first-line workers’ digital empowerment indicates a shift in how many leaders previously viewed this group of employees. Due to relatively high turnover rates and underestimating the importance of first-line employees on company performance, some executives saw them as a cost center and chose to equip only knowledge workers with mobile devices and business apps such as communication and collaboration tools.

Collaborative workplaces are environments where knowledge gets exchanged spontaneously, and everyone is accountable for the total. Traditionally, top-down organizations, in which a small number of executives control the flow of information, oppose this approach.

Revenue Operations – Bridging the divide between frontline operators and C-Suite?

High-growth companies’ owners and boards of directors are well aware of the rising significance of Revenue Operations in creating firm value. Profitability and growth of revenue operations is a board-level problem that necessitates top-down leadership and change management for a straightforward reason: it directly influences their primary fiduciary obligation to safeguard and develop the value of their company. Organic growth and the commercial assets that enable it have become critical to developing value.

Nevertheless, it may be challenging to develop a business case and get management agreement on the skills that will provide the most value to a company at specific points in time. Revenue Operations will assist this shift in thinking by bringing together the goals of many departments and breaking down the barriers between them.

Throughout my career, I saw that by taking a more holistic, end-to-end approach to managing operations across the organization, usually what happens is a siloing in data structure and processes for marketing, customer services, and sales teams. The problem is that you need data that will tell you the entire story of your customer journey to optimize your business growth and performance. Therefore, you can’t think of your operations teams as individual systems that work together in silos — they must work as one revenue machine.

It will eventually be necessary for organizations to dismantle hierarchical structures and adopt a more collaborative business strategy, particularly at the executive level. Businesses, corporations, and forward-thinking communities are likely to place a greater emphasis on less prescriptive leadership methods, pushing employees to participate in new and unusual ways, both in their work and in their interactions with one another.

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