What is a Chief Growth Officer? 

Over the past decade, the Chief Growth Officer (CGO) title has risen in popularity. Typically reporting to the CEO, this individual is responsible for managing growth within the organization in terms of revenue, new products or services, and partnerships. 

Questions to Ask During an Interview 

For companies hiring a Chief Growth Officer, the interview process is critical in gauging a candidate’s qualifications, experience, and leadership style. Asking the right questions will help ensure you’re finding the best match to further your company’s growth and success. 

Related: 6 Interview Questions to Ask a Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) Candidate 

1. Can you walk me through your experience and successes in driving growth strategies in previous roles? 

The person you’re interviewing may not currently hold a CGO role, but that alone shouldn’t rule them out. This question will shed light on the candidate’s past relevant experiences and how they’ve contributed to growth in other organizations. 

2. What metrics or KPIs do you prioritize when evaluating the success of growth initiatives, and how do you ensure alignment with overall business objectives? 

Gain a clearer understanding of how the candidate measures success—and how they ensure their efforts are laddering up to the company’s overarching goals. 

3. Could you describe a challenge you encountered in your career, and how did you tackle it? 

This is a good question to ask, regardless of the position or level you’re hiring for. It’s important to find out how a person responds to and overcomes challenges in the workplace, especially for someone in the C-suite. 

4. What role do data analytics and customer insights play in your approach to developing growth strategies? 

An effective Chief Growth Officer will leverage data and leverage feedback from customers and end-users when developing strategies for growth. 

5. How do you foster cross-functional collaboration between departments (e.g., marketing, sales, product) to drive cohesive growth initiatives? 

As an important member of your leadership team, a CGO will need to communicate and collaborate with departments across the organization. 

6. Can you provide an example of a successful customer acquisition or retention strategy you implemented, including the tactics used and the results achieved? 

Look for a candidate who brings a proven track record in customer acquisition, engagement, and retention, as these are critical elements to any organization’s growth. If you’re hiring for a nonprofit, think of this question in terms of donors, volunteers, and partners. 

7. In your opinion, what are the key emerging trends or technologies that companies should leverage to drive growth in the coming years? 

A savvy CGO will help your business stay ahead of the curve and be able to make recommendations on adopting new technologies that will lead to better outcomes. On the flip side, the candidate should also know that not every new trend or tool makes sense for your organization. 

8. What are your methods for evaluating and mitigating risks associated with growth initiatives? 

Are you looking for a CGO who is okay with taking bigger risks, or do you want someone a bit more measured and risk-averse? The answer may depend on your organizational culture, but either way, asking this question will help you understand a candidate’s thought process when deciding to propose or implement a new initiative. 

9. Can you discuss a time when you faced resistance or skepticism from stakeholders regarding a growth initiative, and how did you overcome it? 

As any leader knows, not every idea will be embraced with open arms. Finding out how candidates respond to pushback—and anything they do to preempt skepticism or resistance—can help you gain a clearer picture of how they operate and work through obstacles on a day-to-day basis.  

10. What qualities do you believe are most important for building and leading a high-performing growth team? 

Leaders set the tone of an organization. Your CGO will likely have multiple departments supporting them, and it’s crucial that you have someone in the role who can motivate, inspire, and hold teams accountable. 

Related: 8 Interview Questions to Ask a Vice President of Sales Candidate 

How Should I Find a Chief Growth Officer? 

Partnering with an executive search firm like TalentRise can help ensure your organization is developing the right job description, promoting it in the right places, and asking the best questions during the interview process—all while delivering an excellent candidate experience.  

If you’re ready to find the right Chief Growth Officer for your organization, contact us today

Related: 11 Traits to Look for in a Nonprofit Executive 

This blog was authored by TalentRise Talent Consultant Sarah Garcia