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Presenting yourself at Board level

27/05/2021

Whether your next career move will put you in front of the C-suite for the first time, or just a new Board of Executives, it’s worth preparing yourself for the experience.

Read our seven top tips garnered from our everyday dealings with clients and senior hirers, as well as our Career Coaching service that regularly helps industry leaders sell their best selves.

What does the C-suite care about? 

As with all good marketing campaigns, the first step in suitably presenting yourself to business leaders begins with knowing what your audience wants. Research the company’s objectives and each Board member’s background. When interviewing with the likes of the CFO, COO or CEO, the one common topic they all share is their business - its revenue, profits, and how it operates. Have this at the forefront of your mind when thinking about your CV and interviews, and turn your experience and achievements into a power list of how your work has contributed to your business in terms of money and value.

Think about these four things: 

1. ROI and the bottom line – at this level numbers do the talking. Depending on what your company does and what those metrics might be, you should be able to show how Marketing contributes to units, sales or pipeline. And with campaign, technology or headcount spend, you will be able to prove your team’s return on investment.  

2. Budget management – be ready to discuss the size of budget(s) you have managed and how you maximised their value.  

3. Marketing or digital KPIs – building on the above, you will need certain metrics to measure performance. How have you done that? What KPIs have you had to introduce to measure ROI?  

4. Strategic input – what have you contributed to the wider business in terms of initiatives, processes or ideas? A successful Director or CMO will transcend other departments to contribute to the business plan overall.  

 

The other key area for consideration is people – no leader is an island

Discussions around leadership style and team nurturing are common. You could think about: 

5. Building teams – have you created or expanded a department? How did you go about it, how did you decide what skill sets to hire, and how did you achieve budget sign-off?  

6. Leadership – there’s a wealth of information on leadership styles. Think about your style and how you take teams with you. How do you get your department to work towards your plan? What is your retention rate like?  

7. Skills development – how have you developed your people and their performance? Do you have any success stories? And likewise, how have you dealt with under-performance?  

 

You can find more career advice here

You may also want to explore Career Coaching, which can help you to prepare for a big presentation or interview, or even break down confidence barriers long-term.  

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