There’s nothing that will take the place of knowing the business to build accountability.
The CCO can’t be seen as an outsider, even if he or she is brought in from the outside. A new CCO should understand the functions of the organization to move as quickly as possible from being labeled an outsider to being considered “one of us.”
Most important, CCOs need to know the players and what their hot buttons are. The CCO will use this knowledge to thrive as a chameleon, modifying approaches as necessary to connect with each part of the organization. Talking with the sales vice president and sales force to understand their priorities requires a different approach from understanding and working with marketing from that perspective. Operations may need another and human resources yet another.
Driving change at times is like throwing pasta against a wall: the message and commitment will stick for one part of the organization but not for another.
Persistence and ingenuity need to kick in frequently for CCOs as they will find it necessary to provide a multitude of approaches and deliver multitudes of messages for driving the work.