Do You Dream of Being In The C-Suite?

by Ken Vincent, Featured Contributor

OKAY, most managers at some time or the other has had that dream of advancing to a high position in the corporate offices.

A big corner office with plush carpets and leather furniture.  Your own conference table, a big salary and an expense account, maybe stock options.  Mr. or Miss X in gold Careerleaf on your office door.  A key to the executive wash room and a reserved parking space by the door.  The prestige of being an officer and having an impressive title.  Whats not to like?  Well quite a lot really.

If you love being a unit manager, whether a restaurant, retail location, manufacturing plant, or hotel you may find that being in the corporate office leaves a lot to be desired.

Your day is largely consumed by meetings, conference calls, reports, paper work, and all those other activities that you most hate as a unit manager.  You analyze reports and then do reports on your analysis.  Those papers in your in box propagate every night and are more prolific than rabbits.  If someone isn’t scheduling a meeting requiring your attendance then you are scheduling one for them.  Every moment in between is consumed with phone calls, and emails.  You are chained to a desk, albeit a nice one.

Then you will surely love the politics.  Corporate offices usually take politics to an art form that would cause professional politicians to blanch in embarrassment.

You will miss the daily interfacing with your staff.  The camaraderie of working to achieve a common goal, the mutual respect that develops, and the client contact.  You will be removed from all the fun of daily problem solving and relegated to a position of dealing in theory, most of which will never see the light of day.

I’ve been there and believe me, it isn’t all that much fun.  If you like being in the trenches where the action is every day, then that corner office in the C Suite may feel like you have been relegated to a preview of Hell on earth.

So, do you want to go to that plush office?  Why or why not?


Ken Vincent
Ken Vincent
KEN is a 46 year veteran hotelier and entrepreneur. Formerly owned two hotels, an advertising agency, a wholesale tour company, a POS company, a leasing company, and a hotel management company. The hotels included chain owned, franchises, and independents. They ranged in type from small luxury inns, to limited service properties, to large convention hotels and resorts. After retiring he authored a book, “So Many Hotels, So Little Time” in which he relates what life is like behind the scenes for a hotel manager. Ken operated more that 100 hotels and resorts in the US and Caribbean and formed eight companies. He is a firm believer that senior management should share their knowledge and experience with the next generation of management.

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  1. Jane, you and those like you, are what makes a business work. You are one of those “unofficial” leaders. You don’t have to have a big title or be in the corporate office to make a difference. Those people in the corporate offices would just be taking up space without you.

  2. I’m relatively certain your description here is why my aspirations have never been to manage, but to serve. Never to lead but to follow as a servant leader. For my aspirations, capitalizing on my abilities to follow and work in the trenches made me a lower paid, yet satisfied assistant. My fondest hours have been spent working on projects to make my boss and team look good. I wonder what nomenclature has been assigned to that suite? I’m thinking the A-Suite. Assistant.