A chief strategy officer is a corporate executive who helps research, design, and initiate plans for short- and long-term company goals. He or she consults with other executives, managers, and employees to devise the best plans for meeting objectives. Depending on the nature of a company, a chief strategy officer might focus on improving production efforts, organizing new marketing campaigns, or expanding a business into new industrial and geographical regions. By employing strong leadership, communication, and reasoning skills, strategy officers ensure their corporations continue to thrive.
Sound planning is necessary for success in every element of business, and it is typically up to the strategy officer to make the ultimate decision about whether or not to follow through with a proposal. Officers spend a lot of their time reviewing ideas put forth by other managers, but they also conduct independent market research and devise their own approaches to meeting goals. They carefully consider the potential risks and benefits of initiating a new policy before giving any orders.
In many companies, the chief strategy officer is involved in more areas of the business than any other professional besides the executive officer. He or she may look at production policies to determine the need for new equipment, systems, or labor. If a particular product is not selling well, the officer can help determine if it should be improved, marketed differently, or cut altogether. He or she also works to develop effective advertising campaigns, company expansion efforts, and new business acquisitions.
In order to be successful in a chief strategy officer position, a person needs to possess a number of unique personal traits and practical skills. He or she must be able to communicate effectively with fellow executives as well as employees and clients. Computer proficiency is essential, as most presentations, documents, and research efforts are performed electronically. In addition, a chief strategy officer needs to be assertive, rational, organized, and dedicated to advancing company goals.
There are no set educational requirements to become a chief strategy officer, but most professionals at large companies hold master's degrees or higher in business administration. An individual may be able to advance within a company to an executive rank by gaining several years of experience and performing exceptionally well in middle and upper management positions. With ongoing experience and success in the position, a strategy officer may eventually have the chance to become a chief executive officer or president of a corporation.