What exactly is the role of a CEO? What does a CEO do on a day-to-day basis? Do they design products themselves? Or do they provide a vision and guide others to achieve it? Do they raise funds and find talent and do business management? Do they create stuff, manage stuff? Are there different kinds of CEOs? Are CEOs leaders? Or Managers? Or Followers?
Most people already know that one size does not fit all and so different kinds of companies have different kinds of CEOs. Now I have worked in small, mid-sized, large companies and several start-ups, across the 26 years of my career and I can honestly say that most CEOs have several things in common. And what are those factors or attributes?
Well, this picture gallery of The Mountain Walker CEO and co-Founder, Abhishek Kaushal, might give you an idea about what CEOs do on a regular work day.
Shopping assistant: knowledge is shared in many ways, including hands-on guidance and decisions when picking gear for a trip.
Whatever it takes: driver, guide, patient bystander.
Some times you are the cook, and some times you have to serve others- an essential reality of management, a core truth for the CEO.
Having the discipline to follow the daily routine is a basic requirement that most CEOs intuitively inculcate since hardwork is the cornerstone of achieving a vision.
Fuel is essential, and the Best Meal Is the One That We Eat wherever we eat it.
A CEO is a leader and a follower: they know when they to lead, when to follow, and when to make up the rear so that they pick up all the stragglers and support those who need the help.
Abhishek Kaushal often climbs and stands on the precarious edge to shoot some of the iconic images that The Mountain Walker publishes. He walks the talk when it comes to getting to the vantage point to shoot the frame, rather than using a zoom lens.
Come rain or shine, dawn or dusk, it is important to ensure equipment is checked and rechecked. Can’t leave Quality Assurance to everybody else!
The trail does not take the team to the destination; nor is there a point in getting there by yourself; you have to walk with everyone and stop to smell the roses.
Letting your hair down every day is important.
Collaboration is the key; one can’t climb on one’s own when one is on the path of building a shared vision.
No work is too small, no individual is too big: dignity of labour is a core value that leaders across the globe try to inculcate in their teams. At The Mountain Walker, the CEO and other management are coolie and cook, friend and trail mate to all others on the trail.
Camera, camcorder, protection from the elements … all set.
How does one fund new directions or design a website or create a new service? Well there’s more ways than the obvious!
And when there are no roads and when the weather shuts down all work, it is important to play and play hard – why did God make snow? To do the snow dance of course!
And where does the trail lead? Into the future that we shall build: the ability to imagine what can’t be seen is an important attribute of leadership.
“Climbing A Mountain and Building a Company are Both Hard Team Work”:The Mountain Walker CEO Abhishek Kaushal below the cornice at the summit of Mount Thelu; Photo: Guneet Puri