When you’re in a position of power in a business you learn two things very quickly.

Authority can be very rewarding: you get to see your plans play out on a grand scale with success or failure turning on your judgement and experience.

Authority can also be very isolating. As a senior decision maker, you’re distanced from the people working under you by that very authority that puts you in that position. When you’re giving orders it’s not just difficult to be friends with the people you’re commanding, it’s often counterproductive. Isolation becomes a necessary part of the leadership process, and this can be become it’s own problem in time.

In your personal life, you need to cultivate relationships with people who understand the issues you face on a daily basis, to help you diffuse the tension of the job, but today we’re looking at the professional relationships that can help a CEO as they shoulder the burden of command.


Any business is going to need lawyers, and as well as the specific legal functions they fulfil, they can make a good sounding board for a CEO. They’re used to assessing arguments, sticking to principles and debating the merits of important decisions, and their strong mandate to advise you about the realities of the law rather than simply do as you say helps to lessen the distance between you.

While it’s only the largest businesses that can employ full time corporate lawyers, finding legal assistance either at a high street business lawyers or online firm can give you the benefit of their services in a more sustainable way.

Market Research

Making decisions on behalf of a company can be very stressful and one way to lesson the burden is to ensure those decisions are based on hard facts. Data driven decision making is less emotive, and allows you to demonstrate exactly why you’ve reached the conclusions you have.

Working with a market research company like Attest gets you data on your consumers, the market and your competitors to support your decision making process and help you feel confident you are doing the right thing.

Interim Talent

If you spot a skill gap in your company you need to act quickly to fill it. It might be that you don’t have the resources to hire a full time worker with the relevant skill set, but you still need a dose of that expertise. The answer could well be to hire some interim talent: a sort of executive temp who specialises in coming into a company, and getting to work setting up the systems and imparting the skills that are needed (unlike more standard consultants who would make recommendations without actually taking action).

Once again, their expertise makes them good at ‘speaking truth to power’ which can make them a great professional partner for a CEO who’s isolated at the top.