The innovative, new CEOStarting a company is no easy task. In today’s ever changing business environment, traditional CEOs fail to survive. We live in a world full of glass windows, where transparency and honesty have taken a front seat over the way things used to be run. While the goal of the modern CEO is obviously similar to that of his former self, a lot has changed.

So what is it that makes an innovative CEO? It’s a combination of many constantly changing things.

But one thing that is perhaps the backbone of an innovative CEO is transparency. Transparency on all fronts. It’s much more than having an office with an open door. Innovative CEOs are able to understand their companies better these days because they’ve become more rooted into the company. They visit the workers, they understand the process. They are successful because they are just as dedicated to the people in the company as the success of the company itself.

It’s no longer about your product; it’s about the experience that comes with your product. An innovative CEO recognizes this. Look at someone like the late Steve Jobs. The iPhones and iPads he dreamed of basically sold themselves. A huge part of that is because Apple wasn’t just selling an iPhone, or an iPad, it was selling the experience that accompanies that product.

It’s not even about inventing the new must have product or developing a technology that makes life easier. Innovation leaves behind the “we need to be first” idea and instead replaces it with “we need to take what we have and make it better.”

Look at leaders like Charles E Phillips CEO profile and you’ll see innovation. Phillips, the leader of technology giant Infor, runs his company like a start-up. Since Phillips took over the reign at Infor, the company has added over 2,500 customers. You can’t accomplish that by simply sitting behind a desk and waiting for your stock to climb.

You can look to the CEOs of the past who had their stock prices posted in the elevator. If the stock wasn’t climbing every single day, something was wrong. Profits were more important than people. Business lunches were more important than business itself! It’s no wonder it’s easy to see why these companies failed so hard.

The innovative CEO isn’t afraid to see some failure because he or she knows that, for every failure, one success will grow from its ashes. Jeffrey Bezos, the CEO of Amazon, said that he asks every person he interviews to tell him about one thing that they invented. Whether it’s something so small or some kind of ground breaking software, he said he wants to know that everyone who works with him is willing to try new things.

To be a successful, innovative CEO in this world, it’s about balancing heritage with relevance. Don’t ever forget where your company came from, but always be willing to adapt. Whether it’s adapting through new regulations, technologies, or anything else, the new CEO holds himself to a higher standard than that of his former colleagues. He regards himself as a human, not just a profit increaser.

Image credit: http://ec.europa.eu

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