In a nutshell, as related by venture capitalist Fred Wilson:
A CEO does only three things. Sets the overall vision and strategy of the company and communicates it to all stakeholders. Recruits, hires, and retains the very best talent for the company. Makes sure there is always enough cash in the bank.
I’ve learned that great CEOs can and often will do a lot more than these three things. And that is OK.
But I have also learned that if you cannot do these three things well, you will not be a great CEO.
“To those predictors of doom, I relay what an old friend once passed on to me. At a certain point in the process, no credit will be given for predicting rain. The only credit will be for helping to build an ark.”
– Ben Horowitz silences naysayers in his essay “No Credit for Predicting Rain”
“I think it is very important for you to do two things: act on your temporary conviction as if it was a real conviction; and when you realize that you are wrong, correct course very quickly.”
– Andy Grove, quoted by Bob Sutton