What is the optimum level of participation for the CEO during the planning meetings?

As CEO you should strive to maintain a balance in your meeting participation. On the one hand, it is important for you to be willing to “sit on your hands” and let the opinions and positions of other team members flow freely and uninhibited.Diverse opinions and the resulting “respectful arguments” are both healthy for your team and beneficial to the process. If you stifle this interaction by interjecting too much or too frequent input, particularly if it dominates the discussion, you run the risk of the plan becoming “your” plan and team members feeling that their participation was just superficial. On the other hand, a CEO’s insights are extremely valuable. You should not take a position of non-participation in the name of facilitating the input of others. It is also your responsibility to keep in mind any mandates that surround the process and be able to diplomatically steer the team back on course if the boundaries of these mandates are exceeded. Many CEO’s will opt for outside facilitation to help achieve this type of optimal balance.

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