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Are Senior Corporate Executives Really Overrated?

This morning I was preparing for my day when I came across a CNBC post discussing "The 12 Most Overrated Jobs 2012". Among this list were Senoir Corporate Executives. I know the level of stress associated with senior level jobs, at least I have heard and been warned by well-intended people. Maybe it is because I desire to be a Senior Corporate Executive someday, but I do not think the position is overrated, overall at least. Maybe in big corporations like IBM, Dell, Google, GE, and such, it wouldn't be as glamorous. But I think that rating a Senior Corporate Executive as #2 as a most overrated job is inaccurate.

 

What is your perception of this? Do you think your job is overrated? Or are the people at CNBC incorrect?

Answers

Topic Expert
Keith Perry
Title: Consulting CFO and Business Operations A..
Company: Growth Accelerator
(Consulting CFO and Business Operations Advisor, Growth Accelerator) |

Chris,

Perhaps there is some over-rating in the glamour of it all....and if you don't like attention it is not a place to be. However, I have to disagree with them. Given the choice of going back to my 10-key* or getting on an airplane to sort out a vendor problem in Asia because the buck stops here....I'll totally take the latter. It isn't about the $$$, and probably fair to say it isn't about the power per se, at least for me. It is all about moving the needle in my case, and so it isn't stressful. Quite the opposite, really.

*10-key, inventory stocking, etc. At one of these jobs I thought I was literally going mad. My brain was rebelling against the mundane-ness, and the stress of hitting the #s that the motion-study said we could make. No, I will never, ever complain about "responsibility". I of course have friends who like clock-watching and punching out at the end of the day. For them, a CxO slot would never, ever be fulfilling.

Topic Expert
Wayne Spivak
Title: President & CFO
Company: SBAConsulting.com
LinkedIn Profile
(President & CFO, SBAConsulting.com) |

What was the context of "Overrated"?

Was it pay?
Was it responsibility level?
Was it social responsibility?

Overrated is one of those broad terms that can mean anything.

Lorraine Romasco
Title: Principal
Company: Continuum Communications, Inc.
(Principal, Continuum Communications, Inc.) |

Don't fall for survey/polling stats whose purpose is to generate site traffic or social visibility. Senior exec positions are glamorous, responsibility-laden, highly-visible and come with professional, and personal, risk. Having consulted with various C-Suite execs in various HR and financial services organizations, I'd say, most earn every penny they make. It's a high-stakes job and there's no PTO - you're always "on." Don't fall for it, Chris! Keep striving for your goal. Just know that if the time comes to cry "Uncle!," and stay in a more comfortable mid-mgmt position, you'll likely find you're sleeping through the night and able to enjoy your scheduled time-off.

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