I think part of the problem is that any C level executive whom is not actually hands on with real responsibilities in their area of control, is going to be disconnected from what is actually happening at the coal face.
If I was starting a company right now, absolutely I would hire a CIO, but he would be a guy actually doing a lot of the work in that area himself, with his other team of experts ... in many ways they would be equals, he just happens to be the first go to guy for finding out what is happening in that area, and for disseminating requests to from other department heads.
Similarly, if I was the CEO I would expect the same of myself ... I do not think there is a point in spending the kind of money it costs for any of these roles if they are not doing hands on work in addition to heading up the company ... the trick is to ensure that each department is well enough resourced that when these people do need to get away for important meetings, they have adequate team mates to take over for them on any job being done ... and of course, the most important assistant they each need, is an EA/PA ... these ladies are the ones who are the real glue in many organisations, and too many people underestimate the importance of a good one.
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