Friday, October 06, 2006

Tee'd Off: Why I'll Never Be a CEO

I've known all along that I wasn't cut out to be the head guy. I'm too introspective, analytical, watchful. A "good thinker" I've been told time and again. (Hey, I'm a doer, too - I'm doing this blog, aren't I.) But I'm best suited to the role of internal consultant, advisor to the throne, chief of staff - figuring out what's going on and making suggestions for what to do about it.

The other day, though, I realized that there was another reason I'll never be Ms. Big: I don't golf.

I was with a client the other day, sitting in on a meeting with one of his firm's business advisors and the conversation turned to what level we should be selling into. To illustrate his point, he told us of a recent exchange he'd had with one of his employees. It seems he'd sent a crew out to a major industry convention, and called one of them to see how it was going.

"Which of our prospects are you golfing with this afternoon," he asked.

"Oh, I'm seeing Joe Blow from International," his guy answered, "But we're not golfing. He doesn't golf."

"Then you're talking to the wrong person at International," he was told.

So it seems that if you don't golf, it's not possible for you to be at the vaunted "C level."

I don't mind the tought of walking around a golf course occasionally whacking at a little white ball, but my powers of concentration are just not geared to focusing on where the little white ball actually goes. I know from my mini-golf experience that, after the first couple of holes, I'm past caring whether I get a hole-in-one or hit the limit and take the "5". I just don't find it all that interesting or worthwhile. I'd rather be focusing on the dynamics of my foursome, or trying to figure out the relationship of the folks just ahead of us, or gauging what a gold-mine the mini-golf operators are running.

So advice for those who want to get to the Big C: pick up a Big Bertha, get yourself a natty windbreaker, and hit the links.

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