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Top 25 Websites for CEOs – Forbes

By on August 4, 2012

If you want to shorten your shelf life as a CEO, it’s easy to do – be uninformed and disengaged. There’s a big world out there, and CEOs need to get out of their bubble and go see it for themselves. Too many chief executives live in an isolated world of constant travel, public policy and capital markets road shows, board and executive meetings, and management briefings – everything is filtered, packaged and fed to them. THIS IS A HUGE PROBLEM.

While many CEOs suffer from email, iPad and Smartphone addiction, the time spent on these devices is largely related to email, scheduling and logistics. The big miss here is far too little time is spent using the web as a digital learning medium. Successful CEOs don’t delegate business intelligence, learning, and listening – they do it themselves.

Let me be clear; isolation is not synonymous with highest and best use – it’s career suicide. Delegation should not be confused with abdication, and span of control should never be confused with span of influence or awareness.  I’m not suggesting chief executives engage in hours of mindless web-surfing activity, but I am suggesting they use the Internet for personal/professional development, research and business intelligence like the rest of the world does. CEOs must wake-up to the fact the Internet just isn’t a tool for their staff.

Following are my top picks for the Top 25 Websites for CEOs (in no particular order of preference):

The Obvious But Overlooked

1. Your Company Website: You’d be surprised how many chief executives have no idea what’s published on their own website – big mistake.  I was recently retained by a Fortune 100 company to work with their new incoming CEO, and when I enquired as to why he wasn’t listed on the company website, he sheepishly stated he’d been on board 6 months and hadn’t even checked the website. This is one of those “the buck stops here” things – if you’re the CEO, you better understand the entirety of your company’s digital footprint (public sites, sites behind the firewall, social media accounts, partner sites, etc.).

2. Your Competitor’s Websites: There are few competitive intelligence tools as effective as the online profiles of your competitors. There’s always a great temptation to delegate this activity to staff, but at a minimum, make sure you are briefed on a regular basis. However the better method is to own at least some of the homework yourself – you’ll find the knowledge acquired invaluable.

3. Your Customer’s Websites: It’s difficult to relate to your customers if you don’t know and understand them. A little time spent understanding the digital footprint of a client can lead to great conversations and big business. When customers find out you’ve invested time in getting to know their company, culture, challenges and opportunities, you’ll have escalated your relationship to a more fruitful level.

Unusual Suspects

4. Foreign Affairs: There are very few businesses of any scale who can’t afford to think globally, and there’s no better publication to inform you on international news and information than Foreign Affairs.

5. Psychology Today: One of the most thought provoking and informative magazines dealing with the human psyche. CEOs are first and foremost in the people business, and few publications will offer insights into the human condition like this one.

6. Mashable: This is where the cool kids hang out for news and information. With 20 million unique visitors and 6 million social media followers, Mashable has become one of the most engaged online news communities. It has both aggregated and original content, and multiple topical channels.


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One Comment

  1. Nnaemeka David

    August 8, 2012 at 1:46 pm

    no nigerian content on mashable. so why recommend it for a nigerian ceo?