What is a CEO Day
If you’re a small business owner than you know a day in the life of a CEO of a Fortune 500 company looks VERY different than your own day. Instead of calling into meetings from the golf course, or schmoozing with investors over lunch at the country club, most of your day-to-day time is spent on all the small operational tasks it takes to keep the business afloat; Juggling to-do’s like answering emails, social media marketing, and bookkeeping, are probably all on the agenda in addition to selling your products or performing your services.
Just because you might not be at that level yet to outsource many of those tasks, doesn’t mean your business has to be completely void of a CEO viewpoint. Instead, you can prioritize one day a month where you can finally take off all those other hats you wear and don your fancy-shmancy CEO top hat (yes, I’m picturing the monopoly man, okay?!) – or more formally known as, a CEO day.
A CEO day is when you dedicate an entire day to big picture thinking like the CEO hotshot you’re meant to be. This day is all about reviewing your business’s performance and strategizing for the future, and not worrying about details like answering customer’s questions, or posting Instagram reels.
Why You Should Be Doing a CEO Day
A CEO day is vital to the health and success of your business because it helps to realign yourself with your business’s vision. Without taking the time to check-in with ourselves and current business practices, we run the risk of hitting a plateau and avoiding growth in all areas of our business. A CEO day isn’t just about making sure we’re on the path to hitting our quotas and numbers, but also giving ourselves the space to rethink certain workflows, habits, and systems so that we can find ways to be more efficient and lead a more balanced life. It also give us to the tools to assess and be honest with ourselves about our current path and provide much-needed perspective on how far we may have come.
How To Implement Your Own CEO Day
So you’re ready to give this whole CEO day a shot? Let me start by saying, there’s no right or wrong way to have a CEO day. In fact there’s plenty of different ways I’ve seen other entrepreneurs incorporate them into their business, so please use the following steps as a guide for building your own CEO day that works for you and your business.
Step 1: Prepare for your CEO day
Personally I like to perform my CEO day at the beginning of every new month so I have a fresh start to the weeks ahead. Around the end of every month I’ll have what I call a “housekeeping day” which allows me to tidy up all the digital clutter and little distractions that might pull me from bigger objectives. I’ll also make sure to carve out some time for cleaning my workspace area so that I can go into my CEO day ready to focus.
Alternatively, sometimes I’ll book a day pass at a local co-working space, or I’ll make plans to head to the library or a coffee shop if I feel I need a change of scenery for my CEO day.
I’ll also set up an out of office email reply for the day, or make sure to communicate with my current clients that I won’t be able to answer any emails/phone calls. You want to be sure you’re setting yourself up for success and eliminating any potential distractions.
Step 2: Get into the CEO zone
I swear every year there’s a new article about morning routines of successful CEOs; they usually involve some eye-roll-inducing lifestyle habits like waking up at four a.m., drinking 64 oz of green juice, doing a two hour meditation, and going for a brisk hike on Mount Everest – all before eight a.m.! Well I’m sorry, but if waking up at four a.m. every morning is what’s holding me back from success, then I guess I’ll accept my fate on that one.
Anyway, you certainly don’t have to go to that extreme for your own successful CEO day, but I still like to be intentional about shifting my mindset for the day ahead. This usually means I’ll pick out a badass outfit to wear, even if I’ve got no plans to leave the house for the day, and I’ll spend some extra time doing my makeup and hair so I feel put together. Of course, do whatever is going to make you feel like you’re in the zone for the day, whether that’s waking up a little earlier than normal, doing a guided meditation, or drinking your weight in green juice (I do not recommend, but I won’t judge 😉).
Then I’ll turn my phone on “do not disturb” mode and dive in!
Step 3: Remind yourself why you’re doing this
I like to start my CEO day reviewing why I started this journey and where I am trying to end up. This is one of the most vital steps to a CEO day because so often as small business owners, we can get lost in all the little details of just trying to survive day-to-day. To remind myself about the why of it all, I’ll spend sometime reviewing my mission statement, core values, and dream client/customer/audience.
If you’re a more visual person like me, then you might have some Pinterest boards or vision boards created for your business in the past. Sometimes, I’ll review those too and spend a few minutes adding additional images that inspire me.
Step 4: Gather data
Next, I’ll get into the dirty work by gathering some reports. The first one I go after is finances, since that’s usually the area I dread the most.
Since I have Quickbooks, most of my bookkeeping is automated, so I usually don’t have to spend too much time cleaning things up before I download my recent profit and loss statement. Then I’ll take that report and input it into my business’s budget to see where I’m at with my financial goals.
If you don’t have a bookkeeping software and do it all manually, then you might want to plan ahead and spend a day organizing your bookkeeping BEFORE your CEO day – we don’t want to waste the entire day matching receipts and crunching numbers.
The other set of data I’ll pull is what I call my performance metrics. This includes a variety of measurable areas I am focusing on in my business from my website visitors, to my monthly revenue, to my client inquires, and more – basically, any part of your business you are trying to grow, whether that be your income, social media following, or community! I’ll review analytics from each of those areas and put the most important numbers into my performance table so I can compare them to the metrics from the following month.
Step 5: Review and assess internal projects and future goals
After that, I’ll spend sometime reviewing where I’m at with my internal projects and readjust my course of action or any deadlines as needed.
I’ll also review my goals for the past month and see what I did or didn’t accomplish. This information will inform me of what I will focus on for the month ahead.
Step 6: Wrap it all up
Finally, I’ll end my day with a self audit that will allow me to draw some conclusions about my business’s prior performance and plan ahead for the future.
Once my day has come to an end, I always make sure to plan a little celebration for myself, whether that be cooking an indulgent meal or booking a little pampering appointment at the spa. No matter my assessment on my prior month’s performance, I’ve taken the time to invest in my business’s growth with a CEO day and THAT deserves celebration!
My Notion CEO Day Template Walkthrough
If you’re on your own with running your business, it can be hard to get out of your head and make sure you’re bringing the right balance of objectivity with your assessments, which is why I designed my Notion CEO day template so that I could have some structure and guidance for my day.
You don’t need to be privy to Notion to use this template right away, as it is a pretty basic setup. Though, you will need a Notion account to download and utilize it (the free version will work just fine with this!). If you’re interested about learning more about Notion, you can see how I use this note-taking and project management tool to run my business.
Let’s breakdown what you’ll find in the template:
At the top I have a space for providing an overview of your business’s WHY. You might have already done this at some point for your business, but this section gives a glimpse of those main objectives and the focus of your business so you can quickly realign yourself with the reasoning for it all.
CEO Day Action Checklist
Here you’ll find a table to track all the tasks you want to accomplish for the day. This can be easily adjusted to fit your own CEO day tasks, but I provided you with some ideas to get started.
Performance Metrics Table
This is where I gather and display all my performance data so that I can get a quick overview of how I’m doing with my growth through numbers month-to-month. Again, this table can easily be customized to fit your own business’s needs.
Self Audit Templates
At the bottom of the page you’ll find a gallery database for housing my self audit forms. This form comes with 15 questions that will prompt you to reflect, review, and plan for the future.
Get My Notion CEO Day Template
Ready to start implementing your own CEO day? Well I’ve got good news, because this template is FREE! Just click this link, sign up for my newsletter, and you’ll gain access to this template and the rest of my free template Notion library.