In UW’s entrepreneurship program it was hammered home many times that a FOUNDER ≠ A Long term CEO.
A founder has the ability to build a culture. Grow something from the ground up. Embrace a risky situation with confidence and turn it into something.
A CEO has to be someone who can CONSTANTLY innovate. Can lead large teams of extremely high performing individuals. Can handle the pressure of being the face of an organization under constant scrutiny of stakeholder.
These are RARELY the same people.
The parallels that I see in these descriptions to Coach Pete and (hopefully) Coach montLake are huge. Pete is a founder. He can build something from nothing and take it to unimaginable heights from where it was but he was never meant to be the “CEO”. It doesn’t mean he couldn’t be but it was never going to be what he is best at.
A mistake so often made in business is a failure for the founder to step aside when his time has come and he is either forced out causing unrest and turmoil or his inability to pivot tanks all the hard work he put in in the first place. Pete is the rare founder who sees the writing and rather than let his ego keep him longer than he should have, he handed it off to a CEO who can embrace that role and drive the ship to new heights.
THANK YOU, COACH PETE