You Might Need a COO, If…

You Might Need a COO, If…

A Presentation by Bill Jackson

Quick Summary

If being the creative force and visionary of your company, as well as managing day-to-day operations is becoming more challenging, it might be time to hire someone who can drive growth and performance by their focus on daily execution.  Someone who can free you up as the CEO to focus on major external initiatives, develop new opportunities, or just spend time away, rather than being occupied with daily operations and keeping multiple departments productive.  That someone might be . . . a chief operating officer.

Presentation Outline

In this presentation, I begin with a bold question: Can your business fully realize its potential with you responsible for daily execution?  To help each attendee find their answer, I share my perspective as an experienced hired gun who has served as a COO and look at four powerful questions that focus on the CEO-COO model.
  1. Do you need a COO?  If you have a growing business, lots of people, multiple locations, various lines of business, and/or feel yourself stretched and pulled in many directions, it may be time for you to hire a COO.  We look at the key indicators that point to the need to recruit someone with the experience and skills to help you take your company to the next level.
  2. Are you ready for a COO?  Are you someone who has been the sole executive running the show from day one?  If so, are you really prepared to share responsibility and authority with another senior executive?  We explore what you might experience if you hire a COO and how to cope with the changes that are inevitable.
  3. Who will do what?  What will your typical day be like once you hire a COO?  What functions will you focus on?  What tasks, functions, and departments will you transition to the COO?  The answers to these questions are up to you, so we’ll discuss your options.
  4. How do we make it work?  Change is tough, especially when it’s your business.  Fortunately, there are some practical steps you can take to increase the likelihood of success and minimize frustration and unproductive friction in the “C suite.”  I’ll share some of the things that CEOs did to help me succeed in the role of COO.

I conclude by once again asking the bold question: Can your business fully realize its potential with you responsible for daily execution?

Target Audience

CEOs and presidents interested in exploring a CEO-COO model, where the CEO is free to concentrate on a more focused list of business activities (e.g. strategy, new markets or new products) and the COO delivers results by managing  the rest of the business.

Possible Formats

This presentation can be delivered as a keynote or workshop, ranging from 30–60 minutes long, depending on your needs.  The ideal keynote length is 45 minutes.

Intended Outcomes

Audience members will:
  • Learn of the possible advantages of adopting a CEO-COO model to ramp up growth and realize more of a business’ potential.
  • Have a framework for thinking through the identification and recruitment of a COO and options for structuring job tasks, responsibilities and accountability.
  • Leave with practical, actionable steps they can implement immediately.

Topic Authority

My experience, insights, and passion for business is grounded in 25 years spent in operating-executive roles of high-growth public and private companies, including serving as COO/president of three businesses – Digital Monitoring Products, Per Mar Security Services, and AMR-TeleService Resources.
As a COO, I have led businesses with revenues ranging from $35 million to $180 million, with up to 8,000 employees, and as many as 20 plus locations across multiple states.  I have personally been a participant in the transition of two businesses to a CEO/COO model where growth was well underway and the company wanted to ramp up its execution to better realize its potential.  I know what it’s like to lead a company on a daily basis, working alongside a CEO/owner to develop and execute plans to grow the business and satisfy shareholder expectations.  I have also participated in the creation of Advisory Boards of Directors to assist the CEO in the transition of responsibilities to and ongoing management of the COO position.
I am currently advising companies in their transition to the CEO-COO model and serve on the board of directors of two regional companies.  I previously served as a director on the boards of Northwest Investment Corp., Security Network of America, Inc. and Northwest Bank & Trust Co.  I am also a member of the World Presidents Organization (WPO) and was a member of Young Presidents Organization (YPO).