The relationship between a CEO and a chairman can make or break a business. Here, Ian Buddery, Chairman of Maestrano, and his CEO Stephane Ibos, delve into some details of their relationship.

A successful relationship between CEO and chairman is based on absolute mutual trust and shared commitment and motivation.

Ian: We have a mutual regard for each other as partners in making the company successful. We have the same objectives, the same motivation, and the same regard for Maestrano and what we want it to represent.

Stephane: We have rapidly discovered that we share the same fundamental values — ethics, commitment, focus — and we are in sync when it comes to Maestrano. Of course, there are times we disagree, but always with the same objective in mind, which is the greater good of Maestrano.

The CEO–chairman relationship can at times be strained by divergent perspectives. It’s easy for roles to overlap and unintentionally undermine each other.

Ian: One of the most satisfying aspects of any team situation is when you communicate without thinking. You save time and energy if your minds are in sync.

Stephane: Permanent dialogue is essential, and when you reach the level of understanding and mutual respect that we have, the CEO–chairman team becomes a very powerful engine for the company.

Having difficulty coming to a conclusion? Sleep on it.

Ian: We have robust discussions and are not afraid to disagree, but always with a constructive attitude and never with a grudge. If we can’t reach an agreement, we tell each other to ‘sleep on it’. It’s remarkable how many issues can be resolved after a night of calm reflection.

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