How can you leave a lasting impression on senior leaders when you lack access to them? It’s an issue that so many people have raised and in probing more, I often find out that they’ve defined access as having X number of hours directly with senior management.
Think about it: if you are fortunate enough to have direct face time with a C-suite for a few minutes, what life-changing, lasting impression can you really make in this short time? Why are you setting yourself up to bank ONLY on these few minutes to define who you are?
Which is why I think this is such a myopic view. And even more so if you work for MNCs, or organisations that tend to be politically gridlocked. And reporting lines aren’t necessarily linear.
So, what matters more is building your network. Your circle of peers, immediate colleagues, direct bosses and subordinates and what they think of you. How many of them respect and like you enough to be willing to educate senior management on your merits when the need arises? Remember: the senior leaders you’re trying so hard to reach aren’t working in isolation, they’re also part of this networked organisation. You’ll need your cheerleaders in good times, for instance, at performance evaluations, to show higher management why they should invest in you and in bad times.
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CMO & Strategy Leader