fishkin-reynolds
Rand Fishkin and Wil Reynolds will switch roles this October for five days.

What happens if you switch places with a fellow CEO, manage their employees and live in their house for one week?

We’re about to find out. Seattle-based Moz CEO Rand Fishkin and Wil Reynolds — founder and CEO of Philadelphia-based SEER Interactive — will be doing a tech startup version of the ABC show Wife Swap for five days starting this Monday.

Yep, that’s right: Fishkin will call the shots at SEER, while Reynolds will do the same at Moz.

mozseerswapThe friends are traveling across the country in opposite directions this weekend with their spouses and will soon arrive at each other’s respective houses.

Fishkin and Reynolds have agreed to share almost everything from their respective companies. They will swap calendars, emails and blogs, and even handle customer pitches.

The hope here is to inject new perspective into each other’s startups. Other than firing employees or making long-term strategic decisions, each CEO will be able to provide their expertise and share their thoughts to a brand new workforce.

Just like they do in Wife Swap, Reynolds just wrote up a list of rules for his buddy:

  1. Take out the garbage
  2. Client work first
  3. You will work at the Search Church and the Search Perch.
  4. Talk to clients as often as you can.
  5. Support F Yeah Friday
  6. Find out somewhere someone is volunteering that week and go with them
  7. Have fun

Fishkin compiled a similar list back in June, but more as groundwork for both of the CEOs. As for Fishkin’s specific requests for Reynolds?

“I’m hoping Wil can give a few product/engineering teams at Moz the benefit of his years in the field knowing exactly what kinds of reporting and investigation tools marketers at a scaling agency need,” he wrote.

And there might be one more …

I’m really excited to see how this experiment goes and how it benefits each company (or not). We’ll have more from the swap next week, so check back on GeekWire to hear from each CEO’s experience.

Editor’s note: Moz is an annual sponsor of GeekWire. 

Comments

  • Adam

    If I was an employee, customer, or investor in these companies, I would be concerned that the CEO can just check out for a week, willy nilly – experiment or not. Not great leadership in my eyes, and a sign that the CEO is possibly not crucial to the company with its current offerings, or pace of business.

    • http://www.davidmcohen.com/ David Cohen

      I’m on the SEER team. I also know where this idea came from very well. Looking at this from the outside I can see how you would have concerns.

      Because of one specific role I play at SEER I’m fortunate to be closely connected with a large segment of our team. They have expressed no concerns that you’re likely alluding to.

      All of our clients were informed of this in advance and given an opportunity to voice their concerns. We have clients that span from a Fortune 25 to early-stage companies who are making their first investment in working with an outside marketing team.

      My client is the Fortune 25. I discussed this with all three of my main points of contact within this organization. Each of the three endorsed and applauded this move.

      At SEER we hire people we can trust. I feel like Rand probably does the same thing at Moz. If you’d like to follow up with me after this happens, I will let you exactly what my own personal experience was.

    • Halil Özgür

      “… that the CEO is possibly not crucial to the company” well, this is the idea: http://sivers.org/delegate

  • http://startedinseattle.com/ ChetCrunch

    This is amazing. Rand, you’re my favorite.

    • http://www.clippingpathspecialist.com/photograph-retouching.html Shumicps

      Me too fond of this band!

  • Adrian Nikolov

    Looking forward to see this week’s Blackboard F Yeah Friday…

  • Walter Cruz

    Will Paris ever challenge London or New York City or Silicon Valley for Tech Startups?? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jm3CcaEb3to&list=PLtKkCrLXkEXUlAbfXcIA9P9YMDguRxcmp&index=1

Job Listings on GeekWork

Find more jobs on GeekWork. Employers, post a job here.