The purpose of this research was to study the lived experience of the strategic leader. The research combined qualitative ethnographic methodology of direct observation of critical incidents with visual, auditory, kinaesthetic and linguistic observation tools from Neuro Linguistic Programming processes. The primary objective was to answer the question: What do CEOs do and how do they do it? A further objective was to explore how they think about what they do. The result of the research is the pure leadership spider web model and sixteen propositions for strategic leadership.