I see a PR firm has done a survey on amount of time Canadian CEOs spend on communication, and found they spend almost half of their time on communication.
I think we're supposed to be impressed that CEOs spend that much time on communication. But, quite frankly, what else does a CEO do? And, if you consider both direct and indirect communication, wouldn't that be more like 90%?
So, what do CEOs do, and how much of that involves communication of one kind or another?
Well, they make decisions. But before they make them, good CEOs get information from specialists in their organization. They also may check other options by reading newspapers and magazines, attending conferences, and talking to their peers. All of which involve communication.
For example, let's say a CEO must decide whether or not to launch an important new product line. Before she makes that decision, our CEO will have had discussions with, and reports from, senior members of sales department. She will also consider country's economic outlook in coming months and years, talk to others about what competitors might do, and review financial implications with VP of corporate finance.
It's all about gathering, distilling, and transmitting information: what we call communication.
Turning to another CEO function, what about envisioning a new future for organization and developing a strategy based on it? Again, communication can't be taken out of mix.
After all, you can't just pick a vision out of air. It's outcome of reflective thinking combined with information, knowledge, and insight. All of which come from communicating.