1. Understand the primary goals set for you by the the Board
A newly recruited CEO has to look at the objectives and goals set by the board of the company.
2. Meet all first-reports, discuss the game plan and initiate implementation of action items on this list.
CEO has to establish the relation with the first recruits. Inform them them the board agenda and learn from the various issues related to the implementation of the agenda. Some barriers to implementation may come in the discussion. CEO has to understand first the nature of the barriers to come out the plans to overcome them.
Company capabilities, competences, resources and relationships have to be ascertained.
3. Request all first-reports prepare the Agenda for the Future.
4. Discuss the dozen biggest problems and opportunities from perspective of all first-reports.
5. If survival is the key issue, prepare a cost cutting plan immediately which is prudent and is in accordance with the Board's short and intermediate term goals.
6. Identify and implement top six action items that could measurably increase short term revenues.
7. In addition to this action list, formulate short-term game plan for company, get board approval and communicate plan to key personnel, suppliers, lenders, etc.
8. Prioritize top ten action items for the whole company and begin implementation.
9. Identify top goals for the company for the current month, quarter and year.
10. Within the first week, get full understanding of the detailed financial statements, itemized payroll, payables and receivables list.
11. Review budgets of all departments or divisions for reasonableness of assumptions, quality of projections and relevancy in light of recent corporate changes and goals.
12. Evaluate obvious, and not so obvious, problems and strengths revealed by the financial statements.
13. Do realistic cash forecast for the next 90 and 180 day periods.
14. Evaluate asset utilization. and make re-deployment plans.
Liabilities and Problems
15. Find and out Deal with the six largest crises within the first three weeks.
16. Review banking and debt obligations for next 90, 180 and 365 day periods and ensure no technical or major defaults, if possible.
17. Determine which critical suppliers have suspended support due to lack of payment, or other problems and initiate discussions with them
18. Identify and take steps to immediately defuse all visible and foreseen problems.
Regulatory / Legal / Litigation
19. Ensure all payroll taxes are paid and properly reported.
20. Determine what, if any, problems exist with other tax authorities and state agencies.
21. Ensure the company is in compliance with all required regulatory and licensing agencies, etc. and if not, take action to resolve these issues.
22. Identity all outstanding legal issues and litigation risks along with probable, and possible, associated costs.
23. Ensure no securities law violations have occurred -- and if they have, take immediate steps to remedy them, or mitigate their impact.
24. Review all legal issues related to patents, trade secrets, trademarks and copyrights.
Product lines / Marketing / Sales / Distribution
25. Analyze product delivery schedules and takes steps to improve meeting commitment dates.
26. Evaluate product development timetables, related budgets and quality of project management systems, procedures and controls.
27. Evaluate sales, marketing, distribution, forecasts and trend lines for improvement opportunities in all areas, so as to generate more cash in the short-term.
28. Identify both the best customers and the most unhappy customers, as well as the company's image in the marketplace.
29. Complete competitive analysis for each product line.
30. Evaluate pricing models for each product line and adjust accordingly.
31. Identify product line strengths and weaknesses and develop short-term action plan to solve the most glaring problems.
32. Identify potential products -- 6, 12 and 24 months into the future -- and their possible impact on revenue and expenses.
33. Establish / update / expand web presence.
34. Evaluate expenditures and effectiveness of marketing and advertising for media, trade shows, market research, focus groups and public relations and adjust accordingly.
35. Evaluate sales force, sales-related incentives, sales targets, sales personnel training, special offers, dealerships, telemarketing and sales support.
36. Evaluate and optimize short-term inventory.
37. Evaluate customer / technical support, warranties, guarantees and after-sales service.
38. Upon arrival, candidly communicate with all company personnel for introduction and conveyance of immediate game plan.
39. Set up suggestion boxes, and invite anonymous email, to gain insight into less obvious underlying problems.
40. Review major Human Resource department aspects of company for legal compliance, competitiveness of benefits package, diversity, clarity of policies and potential costs savings.
41. Evaluate strengths and weaknesses of all first reports.
42. Develop 30/60/90 day performance plans for all first reports.
43. Evaluate organizational structure and effectiveness -- and reorganize if appropriate, adjusting total payroll if necessary.
44. Identify best and worst five percent of employees in the company -- probably replacing worst five percent and ensuring the best five percent are motivated enough to stay.
45. Analyze employee turnover rates to identify fundamental problem areas.
46. Identify key personnel and unfilled job functions, define criteria and initiate search, within budget constraints.
47. Identify personality issues / company policies that may be creating negative impact on company morale and productivity.
48. Review / modify written delegation of authority for all first reports.
49. Review all employment contracts or agreements, oral or written, including any severance or termination compensation agreements with salaried, hourly, or collective bargaining employees.
50. Review all bonus, deferred compensation, stock option, profit sharing, retirement programs or plans covering salaried, hourly, or collective bargaining employees.
IPO / Merger / Acquisition / Disposition / Dissolution
51. Identify which mergers, acquisitions, dispositions and investments make the most sense for the company.
52. Identify the growth issues regarding acquisitions, spin offs, expansion, downsizing, establishing new, and/or closing existing branches and stores.
53. If decision is to sell the company, establish price and terms, subject to Board approval, prepare sales summary and develop game plan and methodology for sale.
54. Complete three year pro forma, based on realistic assumptions, to determine future valuation potential of company and likelihood of IPO or merger/acquisition potential.
55. If Board decision is to dissolve company, develop game plan for liquidation of assets and/or follow up on bankruptcy filing.
General / Administrative
56. Evaluate and control travel, entertainment and all discretionary expenditures and implement new written policies for these issues.
57. Review facilities and real estate issues, including a review of current lease requirements.
58. Review all equipment leases for cost cutting / improved technology opportunities.
59. Create / update business plan for current internal clarity and banking or capital formation needs.
60. "Manage by roaming around" -- gaining insights into attitudes and problem areas from within all levels of the organization.
61. Evaluate in-place systems and procedures and streamline where appropriate.
62. Evaluate technology implementation and optimize within budget constraints.
63. Visit all branch offices and evaluate their needs, performance, personnel and cost-effectiveness.
Stockholder Status / Investor Relations
64. Evaluate investor and stockholder relations and communication status and initiate appropriate action.
65. Generate updated lists of all current shareholders and percentage ownership of each.
66. Review stock options or purchase plans and agreements, as well as lists of outstanding warrants and options, including date of grant, exercise price, number of shares subject to option, and date of exercise.
The Next Steps
67. Report to the Board: the objective status, evaluation, recommended modifications to the short-term game plan and any cash needs.
68. start implementing updated and approved game plan.
Updated 13 August 2016, 31 March 2012