"What are they doing all day?"
When I first took over as VP of Engineering at a startup doing data mining and machine learning research, this was what the other executives wanted to know.
They knew the team was super smart, and they seemed like they were working really hard, but the executives had lots of questions about the work itself. How did they know that the work they were doing was the "right" work? Were there other projects they could be doing instead? And how could we get this research into the hands of our customers faster?