< Back to All Insights and Resources

The Five Pillars of Effective Leadership

Guest: Sean Magennis, the President of CEO Coaching International. Sean was the Global President and COO of YPO for more than seven years. He is a seasoned international business executive specializing in scaling professional services firms and has over 30 years of extensive growth, acquisition, turnaround, and international experience.

Overview: As CEO, it’s a given that you have tremendous influence over your employees. But many CEOs never reflect on how they’re using that influence. True leadership isn’t throwing your weight around and creating a culture ruled by fear of failure. Leadership is how the CEO expresses his or her purpose, values, and vision to the entire organization. The more inspiring that leadership model is, the more motivated your team will be to Make BIG Happen.

On today’s show, Sean Magennis shares the five pillars for effective leadership that all leaders should focus on.Together, these pillars unite the hard skills of running a company with the art of leading people effectively to create a synergy that will drive BIG growth.

Listen as Sean Magennis Discusses his 5 Pillars of Leadership

Sean Magennis on the importance of leadership clarity:
“As a leader, I’m here for several things. I’m here to inspire, motivate, encourage our team to continue to learn and grow in their roles, do more and become more. And then to hold myself and others to an agreed set of activities in service of a particular outcome that we’ve all agreed upon. Along with those elements is the responsibility for what we do, who does what, the how and the why of the business. And if you and your team are not clear on the lanes and the roles that you have, businesses get messy.”

Sean Magennis on how CEO coaching and mentorship can improve leadership skills:
“What kind of leader do you want to be? My experience is the best leaders are not relentlessly climbing to the top of the ladder by crushing people and leaving a really messy wake behind them. We all know stories of CEOs that burn people out by tearing them down. The best leaders are those who are supported, mentored, and encouraged by others of influence. They know that they did not get to the top without the help of others, and they excel through a service mindset and a willingness to learn. They serve others.”

“The best leaders are those who are supported, mentored,
and encouraged by others of influence.”
Sean Magennis – President, CEO Coaching International

Sean Magennis on the power of authentic leadership:
“I’ve learned that being your true self, your authentic self — which means being vulnerable and trying to be the very best version of yourself you can be — is actually OK in the business world. A lot of business people wear a mask because they think that vulnerability or not having the answers is a negative. I have found the opposite, but it took me a long time to get there. I learned that I don’t have all the answers. I’ve observed our partners, some of the best CEOs in the world, and our coaches ask very penetrating questions to shine a light on what they call somebody’s story. You got the story, what are the facts? How can we get to a core understanding in terms of yourself? What’s holding you back? Where are your blind spots? And once those are discovered, then how do we make sure that those blind spots or those negativities or those potential weaknesses don’t derail you?”


These CEO Coaches Literally Wrote the Book on Making Big Happen CEO Coaching International’s CEO and Founder Mark Moses and members of our senior leadership team discuss their new book, client success stories, and the leadership mindset that separates so-so companies from the ones that grow BIG.

Grasshopper: How Focus, Discipline and Execution Lead To Profitable Exit CEO Coaching International’s COO and Managing Director Don Schiavone discusses the strategy he used to lead Grasshopper to a BIG exit.

About CEO Coaching International

CEO Coaching International works with CEOs and their leadership teams to achieve extraordinary results quarter after quarter, year after year. Known globally for its success in coaching growth-focused entrepreneurs to meaningful exits, CEO Coaching International has coached more than 1,000 CEOs and entrepreneurs in more than 60 countries and 45 industries. The coaches at CEO Coaching International are former CEOs, presidents, or executives who have made BIG happen. The firm’s coaches have led double-digit sales and profit growth in businesses ranging in size from startups to over $10 billion, and many are founders that have led their companies through successful eight, nine, and ten-figure exits. Companies working with CEO Coaching International for two years or more have experienced an average EBITDA CAGR of 53.5% during their time as a client, more than three times the U.S. average, and a revenue CAGR of 26.2%, nearly twice the U.S. average.

Learn more about executive coaching | Meet our world-class coaches

Related Content


Striking Gold: How Successful CEOs Allocate Tim...

Striking Gold: How Successful CEOs Allocate Time Between Current Challenges and Future Opportunities A CEO's daily...

Read more
Harold Brand

Harold Brand's Blueprint for Transforming Engin...

CEO Coaching Int'l ...

Read more
John Harmeling

Laser-Focused on Growth, CEO Coaching Internati...

Laser-Focused on Growth, CEO Coaching International Appoints Powerhouse Grant Thornton CMO John Harmeling as Chief Re...

Read more