“Being a CEO is a lonely job.” Well… let me tell you about being a Chief of Staff. 🙂
Most often people don’t quite understand what you actually do. Sometimes it’s by design (hello ‘special projects’!)
Or whether they are truly talking to you or, through you, to the CEO.
What is ‘safe’ to share and what isn’t.
No one reports to you (most likely), yet, you need to ensure that the teams deliver on the things that actually matter for the business.
No room for BS.
You need to embrace that being a generalist is not a weakness, quite the contrary. Yet create the impression that you know what you are doing in front of subject matter experts.
You are the CEO’s bestie, and everyone else comes after that.
You have all the information, yet, you can only share selectively and with care.
Sometimes you even become the real ‘game master’ running the place without anyone realizing, including the CEO (welcome to the ‘advanced’ level 🙂). In that sense, you might actually have the loneliest job.
I have found that connecting with fellow CoS brought me a ton of ‘gosh, it’s not just me!’ moments, great connections and even some new friendships.