COO: The Invisible Value

Alexander Lyadov
2 min readFeb 12, 2024
Frank Azine

I always figured the surgeon did the heavy lifting. Surgery transforms the body instantly and radically. Anesthesia, uncertainty, risk — no wonder the patient’s emotions go off the charts.

But turns out, the rehab expert’s role is just as crucial.

I got it when fixing up my Jiu-Jitsu-battered knee. Post-operation, for three months, thrice a week, I hit up group sessions. The rehab expert’s goal was simple:

“The injured leg must become stronger than the healthy one.”

He assigned me ten peculiar exercises. From a thousand squats and wall-sitting for 15 minutes to unicycle balancing and zapping muscles with electric current.

Thanks to the “surgeon + rehab” combo, I forgot all about my knee.

In business, all the attention usually swings to the CEO. Sure, they lay out the path, fire up the team, and steer the ship.

But it’d all crash and burn without the one de facto playing the COO role right by their side. Even if they go by another name, like CFO, Traffic Manager, or a personal assistant. Sometimes, it’s a blend of a few folks.

Either way, the contribution of this COO slides under the radar.

People only catch on when the COO quits or falls sick. Suddenly, customers gripe, employees squabble, and margins plummet.

A savvy founder treasures the “CEO-COO” alliance. Just as a rehab expert saves a surgeon’s rep, a COO rescues the efficiency of the CEO’s decisions.

Sincerely yours,

-Alexander

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Alexander Lyadov

As a business therapist, I help tech founders increase the value of their business by unlocking the potential of their personality.