Becoming a Remote C-Suite Executive – Opportunities & Employment Terms to Negotiate For

Becoming a Remote C-Suite Executive – Opportunities & Employment Terms to Negotiate For

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As we emerged from the COVID-19 pandemic, remote work has become a fact of life for almost all businesses.

Many executives are now working from home offices or suburban satellite offices and participate in meetings and conferences via online communication tools like Zoom. As a result, there is a growing trend of CEOs and C-suite executives interviewing for and assuming new positions without having to leave their homes or nearby home offices. 

Thus, while COVID-19 has hurt many businesses and the careers of senior executives who work in them, it has also given rise to new remote executive job opportunities for those who do not wish to relocate.

This article discusses the benefits and challenges of working remotely as a C-suite executive and how to negotiate executive employment terms that allow you to work remotely.


Remote CEO Benefits and Challenges


The benefits of remote work are numerous.

As a remote C-level executive, you will spend less time commuting or traveling and enjoy more time with family. You will work in the comfort of your home office in comfortable clothes. 

While the pandemic has caused significant challenges and disruptions, it has also opened up new avenues for executives to explore and secure career advancements without uprooting their lives. By capitalizing on the expanding remote work landscape and leveraging virtual communication tools, executives can navigate the job market and potentially find their next position without the need for physical relocation

By taking a remote job, you may step up your career with a C-level job in a forward-looking company in Silicon Valley, New York, or Boston without having to relocate your family. Alternatively, if you are a successful C-suite executive from a major city, a company outside of the urban centers of America may seek you out and offer you an especially lucrative or otherwise attractive executive job offer, with the provision that allows you to work remotely from wherever you live today. 

There are also challenges to taking on a remote executive job. As you will be leading your workers from afar, you need to have the skills to manage relationships and build company culture virtually. Can you be encouraging and supportive when your team is remote? Can you inspire and challenge your workers to do their best in an online environment?

When applying for remote jobs, you will need to demonstrate your remote management skills and experience, as well as achievements that you were able to attain in a remote work context.


Negotiation Strategies for Remote Work for C-Level Executives


In negotiations to serve as remote CEOs or remote C-suite executives, you should start by building the comfort level of your new employer on the idea of having a key executive not on the scene. 

? Start with Consulting

One strategy for flexibility is to offer consulting.

You begin by getting hired as a consultant to perform C-suite tasks. As you build your performance record, the company will become more comfortable turning your position permanent with no change in your physical location. 

? Terms for Temporary Relocation  

Ask for employment terms for the company to provide full funding for an apartment, car rental, and air commuting before permanent relocation is required, say, within a year.

After a year, if you have achieved the desired results while working remotely, you can then negotiate to let the temporary relocation terms continue. 

? Reduce on Site Presence  

Even with temporary relocation, you can minimize on-site presence by negotiating for a reduction in commuting as part of your executive employment agreement.

You may argue that although the pandemic is declared over, travel remains a mess, and costs have increased enormously. Flights are frequently canceled. 

? Make Temporary Concessions in Executive Compensation  

Another strategy for employment negotiations is to offer some concessions in executive salary, benefits, and equity now to gain the remote position.

You can then leverage your success on the job as a remote CEO or C-level executive to get the terms of compensation you would normally seek using a retention agreement once you have proven your value at the company while working remotely. 

? Online Connectivity and Tools 

Your CEO employment contract must ensure that the company provides for a stable, efficient remote work environment with a strong infrastructure of online connectivity and productivity tools and professional IT staff to support it.  

Remote work is here to stay. Lucrative and career-advancing job opportunities may be far away from where you live. Look farther out and spread your net wider. Go for a remote C-suite executive job. You’ll be glad you did!

Robert A. Adelson
About the Author
Robert A. Adelson

Robert A. Adelson, Esq. is a corporate and tax attorney and principal of Adelson & Associates, LLC, Boston, Massachusetts. He represents CEOs, C-Level, and senior executives on various issues, including employment terms, tax-favored equity, bonus and LTI compensation, change of control, retention, separation, wrongful termination, non-compete, and restrictive covenants. Email: [email protected]

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