Who ya callin’ a fractional CxO?

Fractional CxO – over the years, I’ve found a lot of ways to describe what we do at Trustmode, but fractional CxO is increasingly feeling like the right term. While I’ve tried on coach and consultant over the years, these have always felt a bit short. They miss the depth and range of the services I provide. To help explain just what it all means, I’ve put together a fractional CxO or fractional executive FAQ.

In recent years, there’s been a shift toward outsourcing and a growth in SMEs. Those firms count for 90% of businesses and 50% of employment around the world, according to the World Bank. But, faced with the need to be nimble, fast and accountable, SMEs often cannot commit to bringing on dedicated executives for 40 hours. Whether it’s a few hours, days or some other arrangement, a fractional CxO can help businesses achieve the flexibility and results orientation they need.

I should note that a CxO and a CXO (CUXO) are not the same thing. The x in CxO stands for expertise, experience, executive or execution. But the X in CXO is about experience, often user experience. That being said, I happen to have experience in both areas.

In putting CxO in the description of my business, I struggled. I’ll admit it. Women are socialized to use terms other than executive, CEO, president or founder in describing their businesses and their roles. It follows that women may also have trouble taking on the C-suite descriptor when explaining the work they do. It was actually a few of my own business advisors who challenged me to stop using just coach and consultant, when the role I have is often much more senior and close. So, after some careful thought about what other ways someone with my background could describe their role, I came back to fractional CxO.

What is a fractional CxO?